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Welcoming the new minimum wage

Does making $15/hour make Seattle affordable?


For people making minimum wage, any increase is appreciated. New minimum wages are already in effect, as of New Year’s Day. While the target wage many mention is $15 per hour, the reality is lower depending on location, occupation, and age. Seattle’s is the highest, but the rest of the state is catching up. Company size, whether health care is paid for, and whether tips are included change the numbers. Workers younger than sixteen years get 85 percent of the minimum wage, which means a raise on their birthday, unless their employer lets them go.

According to Zillow, the minimum wage in Seattle should be enough to afford $825 monthly rent, which reveals a disturbingly low selection of only three places to rent. They’re probably in demand.

For the official story, check out Seattle’s Office of Labor Standards and Washington State’s Department of Labor & Industry’s page for outside the city.