Oregon

Report: Oregon unaffordable for average renter

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- A new report says the average Oregon renter can no longer afford a one-bedroom apartment.

The National Low Income Housing Coalition's "Out of Reach" report shows a renter would have to earn $36,161 a year to comfortably afford a typical one-bedroom rental in Oregon. The average renter household in the state makes $36,096.

The report also shows a minimum wage worker needs to work 79 hours per week to afford a modest 2-bedroom rental. In Washington, it's even higher -- 93 hours of minimum wage work are necessary to afford the same space.

The Oregonian/OregonLive reports the study uses fair-market rents, which are determined by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to set local values for housing vouchers. It considers housing to be affordable when it consumes less than 30 percent of a household's income.

Though rising rents in Portland have garnered a lot of attention in recent years, the study shows there are only a few rural counties where the average one-bedroom apartment is affordable to a renter who works full-time earning the minimum wage.

Salem resident Marie Barham told KOIN 6 News high prices make it impossible for people with low-incomes to save the money necessary to move.

"People will have to move out with their deposit before the next rent is due and find a place," Barham said. "That will be even harder, we've looked. I don't have $40 for an application fee. I don't have $35 for an application fee."

KOIN 6 News Reporter Gabrielle Karol contributed to this report


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