Idaho State Counties
Boundary: Housing affordability

Many rental households, which make up one-third of all households in the nation, face ever-increasing rental costs that make it more and more difficult to afford decent housing.  Housing is considered affordable if a household spends no more than 30% of household income on housing costs. 

Each year, the federal government sets a Fair Market Rent (FMR) for each county.  The FMR is a measure of gross rent, which includes shelter rent plus the cost of all tenant-paid utilities, except telephones, cable or satellite television service, and Internet service.  It refers to the amount of money a rental would command if it were available for rent.

The Housing Wage refers to the hourly wage a household must earn at a single full-time job to afford the FMR for a two-bedroom unit at 30% of household income.

In Boundary, for the years 2017-2021. . .

  • an average of 23 percent of all households were rental households.

In Boundary in 2022. . .

  • The Fair Market Rent for a two-bedroom rental was $781 per month.
  • Those with a household income of at least $31,240 per year could afford a two-bedroom rental at the Fair Market Rent.
  • The housing wage for a two-bedroom unit was $15.02 per hour, which is the same as 82.9 work hours at a minimum-wage job.

To get the most out of this indicator . . .


Ask questions:


·         What income is required to afford the local Fair Market Rent?

·         How does the local Fair Market Rent compare to the state average?


Look at other indicators:


·         “Employment: Wage per job” – Does the average local wage per job provide enough income to afford local rental rates?

·         “County types: County policy type codes” – Is your county classified as a “housing stress” county?


Dig deeper:


·         Look at the county rankings for your state and/or view maps to see how your county compares to others.

·         Take a Big Picture view of your county.

·         If you have specific questions, send us an e-mail.

Note: National data are not available. Minimum wage levels in 2022/2021/2020/2019/2018/2017/2016/2015/2014/2013/2012/2011/2010/2009/2008/2006 were: Idaho ($7.25/$7.25/$7.25/$7.25/$7.25/$7.25/$7.25/$7.25/$7.25/$7.25/$7.25/$7.25/$7.25/$6.55/$5.85/$5.15). The ACS data are estimates based on a five-year average, meaning that data gathered from 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021 are averaged together to come up with the results shown here. For an explanation of fair market rent calculations see, ( There is no problem with comparing these data to census data from 2000. For a technical discussion of the "margins of error" associated with ACS estimates, please see: (

Source: 2006-2022: National Low Income Housing Coalition, Out of Reach, (; DATE LAST UPDATED: March 30, 2023.

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