Workers in Many Healthcare Occupations Cannot Afford Housing

The National Housing Conference released its 2017 edition of Paycheck to Paycheck on September 27. This year’s report examines housing affordability for healthcare workers in 203 metropolitan areas. A number of healthcare occupations do not pay sufficient wages for workers to afford their housing. This year’s report focused on housing affordability for home health aides, physical therapy aides, emergency medical technicians, dental assistants, and licensed practical nurses.

The report examines housing affordability for a median-wage worker with two to four years of experience in each of the five occupations. A median-wage home health aide could afford to rent a modest two-bedroom apartment without spending more than 30% of his or her income on housing in only one of the 203 metropolitan areas examined. A median-wage physical therapy aide could afford to rent a modest two-bedroom home in just two metropolitan areas. A median-wage emergency medical technical technician could afford a modest two-bedroom rental home in 41 metropolitan areas; a median-wage dental assistant in 69 metropolitan areas; and a licensed practical nurse in 163 metropolitan areas.

The written report, Paycheck to Paycheck 2017: A Snapshot of Housing Affordability for Healthcare Workers, is available at:

A Paycheck to Paycheck on-line database allows users to compare housing costs to wages for 83 occupations in each of the metropolitan areas. It is available at: