The Self-Sufficiency Standard Questions
- Why does a preschool child add $20,000 to the costs of a single parent
in some parts of California, and far less in many other places?
- Why are rents so high in California and New York City? Are the apartments
much fancier at the 40th percentile?
- Why are rents so low in Philadelphia?
- Why are rents higher in places where population density is high?
- Does the song "New York, New York" talk about life in a high rent area?
("If you can make it here, you'll make it anywhere.")
- Who gets the rent money?
- Why do renters at the just-getting-by level pay such high taxes? They
aren't paying property taxes themselves; those are embedded in their rent.
of it is payroll taxes?
- Only in the least expensive counties are people getting much in the
way of tax credit money.
- How many of us lack sufficient income to meet our most simply defined needs?
- What does the rising price of gas do?
- What will happen to rents in the low-cost counties when retiring baby boomers
with little home equity to live on move in? Who will benefit from this? Who
will be negatively affected?
- Why are women willing to have a baby, even though their cost of living
rises by $10,000, but reluctant to marry, even though their cost of living
only rises it by about $7,000, and a husband is likely to bring income of
more than that? (Maybe it is easier to manage on a tight budget with only
one adult, rather than negotiating out the vicissitudes of tight-budget living
with another adult.)
- Might the large share of people whose incomes are below or near the Self-Sufficiency
Standard — the just-getting-by level — have some bearing on divorce
rates and the number of single parent families?
Some answers and links — and probably some more questions — will
be added as time goes on.