One of the biggest things that people complain about in Duluth is the lack of affordable housing. New developments open up apartments and sometimes market them as affordable housing. This has become a hot topic for many people struggling with the cost of housing.

What Is Considered A Living Wage In Duluth?

I looked up some stats from the Living Wage Calculator for Duluth, Minnesota. For a single person without children, they say the living wage needs to be at least $19.38 an hour for a full-time worker. With a child, that number jumps to $35.62 an hour. It varies depending on how many children you have.

Your rent should be no more than 30% of your gross income.

Experts say for budgeting you should plan on about 30% of your income for rent. More than that puts stress on the rest of your expenses.

Photo by Towfiqu barbhuiya on Unsplash
Photo by Towfiqu barbhuiya on Unsplash

What should a single person making a living wage in Duluth pay for 'affordable' housing?

Let's make this simple. If a single person makes $19.38 an hour working full-time, they should be paying no more than 30% of their income to rent.  Their gross monthly income would be $3,359.20. That would put rent for a single person at $1,007.76. 

What can you rent for $1,000 per month in Duluth?

For around a thousand bucks a month, you can afford a studio apartment. Perhaps you can afford a small 1 bedroom apartment depending on location.

How much should a 2 person household pay for rent in Duluth?

Once again, let's look at this by the numbers. If two adults are both working full-time in Duluth and sharing an apartment, they need to make $13.93 an hour each. That puts their gross monthly income at 4,829.06. 30% of that comes out to $1,448.72.

What can you rent for $1,500 per month in Duluth?

Judging by listings on, $1,500 should be enough to get you into a one-bedroom apartment. In some locations, you could maybe afford a 2 bedroom for around that price. But most 2-bedroom apartments are closer to $2,000 in Duluth.

Photo by Alexander Grey on Unsplash
Photo by Alexander Grey on Unsplash

What's the actual median income for Duluth residents?

The United States Census Bureau's statistics say the individual median income in Duluth is $26,630 for an individual. The median household income is $54,084.

30% of the median household income in Duluth isn't enough for affordable rent.

Using the rule of thumb that 30% of your gross income should go to rent would add up to $1352.1 per household. As you can see above, that makes things pretty tight.

So what do you think? Can you afford rent with your current wages in Duluth?


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Gallery Credit: Aubrey Jane McClaine