Well, yes, this is The Guardian but still. On wages:
This year, prices in the private rental market dropped for the first time in six years, with the UK average rent falling to £921 a month. ONS data puts the average UK wage at around £27,000. This figure is skewed upwards by the small number of people who earn disproportionately more than the average,
She links here to show us those wages:
In April 2015 median gross weekly earnings for full-time employees were £528,
Just in case any Guardian writers should stumble upon this the median is where 50% of the population (here, the population being defined as full time employees) get less and 50% more. This number is not subject to distortion by those who earn disproportionately more than the average. That form of average would be the mean, which can indeed suffer from such distortion.
Our Cambridge graduate in politics and sociology doesn’t understand this. To the point that when she tries to explain it she gets it the wrong way around. Note further that the Guardian’s subs and editors are equally clueless for allowing this to go to print.
but if even you are lucky enough to earn that, you’re still spending around 50% of your wages on rent every month.
That’s a slightly different little statistical trick. The average rent is, at least I think it is (altho it doesn’t in fact matter that much for this point, it still stands if it’s the median) the mean rent across the country. And it’s the mean rent for all types of households. Four bed houses in Chelsea, bedsits in Hull.
And how many one earner households (which are in a minority note) are occupying the average amount of dwelling space for the country?
I don’t actually know, this is a guess, but I would suspect that the average (mean or median) British dwelling is a 2 or even 3 bed house. We should be comparing the rent of that against a single wage earner why?
There’s also this:
I currently live in a three-bedroom house with four other people (luckily, I live with couples) in order to bring my rent down. Far from being fancy, it was one of the cheapest places I could get – on the top floor of a council estate. Even so, I need to work at four jobs in order to afford the rent and still eat each month.
Umm, yeah. Average rent in London is higher, yes, £1,200 perhaps. Note again that’s per dwelling, not person. That rent would be split 3 ways perhaps, normal enough to split by bedroom not number of people, so £400 a month? Hell, let’s call it £600 a month for Poppy alone.
Four jobs? Umm:
Currently a Policy Officer in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. Soon to be a Frontline Social Worker (July 2015 Cohort). Previously managed the QA Review for Challenge Partners. Co-founder of the Letsspeakclearly blog. Contributions to The Guardian Newspaper, Channel 4 News, The Evening Standard the ‘Yet We Still Rise’ UpRising Blog and the MyPersonality Wiki. Features in The Mirror and Varsity. London Board Member for UpRising. Pro-bono tutor for The Access Project, occassional runner for the GoodGym and an alumni of the Future First Network. Founding member and ex Vice-Captain of Trinity College Women’s Football Team and the Trinity College Politics Society. Ex-Access Officer for Trinity College.
OK, maybe she’s not updated Linked In.
Poppy Noor is a London-based freelance journalist. She writes about class, politics, inequality and education, and has provided social commentary for Channel 4 News and Newsnight.
Err, what’s her definition of a job? Freelance? Or is she counting doing a piece or two for The G as a job, doing bits for Newsnight as a job, Channel 4 another? She does get the concept of freelance, does she? By her seeming definition I’ve got 7 jobs as regular gigs……
We’re used to numeracy not being a requirement at The G but surely they still demand at least a tad of logic?