ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — A “living wage” is calculated as the hourly rate that a person must earn to support themselves.
How much does someone need to earn to support themselves in Illinois?
Assuming the person is working full time, according to MIT’s living wage calculator, a single adult with no children must earn $18.10 an hour. With one child, that increases to $36.29 an hour; with two children, $46.81.
That’s the Illinois average. But in Winnebago County, a single person would have to earn $15.51 an hour, or $33.15 with one child, and $42.80 with two children.
The Illinois average living wage for two adults who both are working is $14.23 an hour per person, with that increasing to $20.17 an hour per person to support one child, and $25.61 an hour for two children.
Conversely, in Winnebago County, those costs are slightly lower, with each adult needed to earn a minimum of $12.91 an hour with no children, or $18.60 to support one child, and $23.73 an hour for two children.
The minimum wage in Illinois is $13.00 an hour, but that is set to increase incrementally to $15 an hour by 2025.
There are some exceptions to the $13 an hour increase. People under 18-years-old that work less than 650 hours a year, as well as tipped workers, will not see that raise.
The cost of living in Illinois is 12% lower than the national average. Hawaii is the most expensive, at 81.8% higher than the national average.
Mississippi is the cheapest state to live in, according to Insure.