cropped photo two men in front of of a building and store front

ONE SIZE DOES NOT FIT ALL.

Economic diversity across America needs to meet each community.

In this section we have determined the Universal Living Wage for over fifty cities from around the country. By applying the Universal Living Wage formula, we have identified their Fair Market Rents (FMRs) and determined the least wage necessary to afford both an efficiency apartment or a one bedroom apartment by plugging the FMRs into the Universal Living Wage Formula.
What is important to note is the wide range of wages required to meet basic housing cost from city to city. In some cities, such as Chicago, Illinois the cost of housing has now inflated so that a minimum wage of $15.33/hour is required for a one bedroom apartment. On the other hand, by using the same formula and incorporating the same standard (that no one should spend more than 30% of their income on housing), we see that the amount needed to get the same one bedroom apartment in Clay, West Virginia only requires a minimum wage of $6.42/hour. Clearly one size does not fit all.

For example, any attempt to meet the minimum wage needs in Santa Cruz, California by paying a wage rate of $5.15/hour is impossible. This is why even fully employed minimum wage workers are not affording housing across this nation.
At the same time, to apply the current federal "cookie cutter" response of "one size fits all" and force the required minimum wage in Santa Cruz, California of $24.88/hour on the small businesses of Asheville, North Carolina would be tantamount to forcing them all into bankruptcy! This means that we must customize the wage accordingly.
The national hue and cry has been to return power to local government. This formula allows us to do just that and to respect the economic individuality of not just every state but nearly every municipality and country region throughout the United States. Finally, the formula establishes a "continuum of flexibility" from which each individual community can designate 

We have determined the Universal Living Wage for over fifty cities from around the country. By applying the Universal Living Wage formula, we have determined the least wage necessary to afford a one bedroom apartment by plugging the HUD Fair Market Rents into the Universal Living Wage Formula. Take a look at the Interactive Map to see a global overview.

What is important to note is the wide range of wages required to meet basic housing cost from city to city.  Bottom Line...we are a nation of 1,000+ economies, and one size does not fit all!  Fully employed minimum wage workers are not affording housing across this nation. The national hue and cry has been to return power to local government.

This formula allows us to do just that and to respect the economic individuality of not just every state but nearly every municipality and country region throughout the United States.

Finally, the formula establishes a "continuum of flexibility" from which each individual community can designate whether it wishes to pay a wage that gets its minimum wage workers off the streets and into housing (efficiency apartment). Or, if it chooses, each community can make a decision to pay a wage that will ensure a single woman with a child can afford a one bedroom apartment. Each community can either start at the efficiency level or at the one bedroom level, using the same national formula, which embraces the same national guidelines and is related to the local cost of housing. 

The ULW formula allows us to meet the needs of each community and those of minimum wage workers who are the basic cornerstone of our economic viability as a nation. This formula allows us to recognize states' rights and their economic diversity all across America. It allows us to meet the needs of each community and those of our minimum wage workers.

 Interactive Map