In the state of Rhode Island, the minimum wage is now at $10.50 an hour. This is 40 cents up from the $10.10 is was for the past year. Even with this slight raise, it is still not enough, as Rhode Island is a very expensive place to live.

The cheapest rent in this state is around $800 to $900, if you’re lucky to get that as they fill up fast. One duplex unit in Hopkinton, near Westerly, hovered $1,000, and it was already run down and falling apart. And if you want an apartment, even if just a one bedroom, expect to shell out at least $1,300 every month for it.  

Providence is the largest city in the state, and no matter which part of it you live in, you can pay a hefty penny. Studios in Fox Point, a more upscale area near Wickenden Street, is at $1,100 or more. An apartment with two or more bedrooms is usually over $1,400. The area of the Lower south side, which is more crime-ridden and has a rough reputation, is still expensive, with the average rent being around $1,200.

If you want to buy a house, expect a small ranch to be up around $200,000 plus. The bigger house, though, the more money, so you could spend up to half a million for a large four bedroom, two bathroom home. Most people can look in awe when they score on Trulia to find their dream home. They be better buying a house in Florida.  

Not only is housing expensive, but utilities are too. One person can pay up into the high hundreds just to have hot water and electricity. If that is not paid right away, the company will shut you off. They seem to not care, they just want their money. This is a basic necessity too, especially to cook and shower with. Without heat or water, you’re screwed!

Food prices are astronomical. Stop & Shop, Shaws and even some Walmarts are pricey. A gallon of milk at Stop & Shop is nearly $4, and a pound of hamburger is $10! I guess feeding a family of six would be out of the question, unless you have a six figure a year salary, which most people here sadly do not.

This kind of living is a real hardship. With high rents, high taxes, high rates for food and even car maintenance, it can be nearly impossible. Many people have moved out of the state and relocated to places to not only where the weather was better, but where they could breathe better too. They are able to live more comfortably without having to worry as much about their budget.

In Rhode Island, having only $10.50 an hour isn’t sustainable for a minimum wage job. The only way it could be is the cost of living in this state were lowered, even if just a little bit. Even the compromise of raising the wage slightly along with lowering the cost of living will be beneficial too.

This is just one person’s opinion though. Everyone can just check it out and see for themselves.