If you are considering relocating due to cost-of-living or wages, researching what the state’s Department of Labor has to say is important. While many people are pushing for $15 per hour federal minimum wage, it still sits at $7.25 per hour for now. However, many states have different minimum wage laws. So, what is the minimum wage in Delaware? Let’s have a look…
The Federal Minimum Wage
The federal minimum wage sets a bare minimum that employers have to meet for paying employees. However, there are several ways around minimum wage requirements that employers often take advantage of. For instance, in North Carolina, it is legal for restaurant owners to pay their wait staff less than the minimum because the waiters will make tips.
This and other laws may vary from state to state. Because of this, it is important to know what the minimum wage is where you live, especially if you are planning a move. So, what is the minimum wage in Delaware?
What Is The Minimum Wage in Delaware?
The minimum wage in Delaware is higher than in some other states in the U.S. According to the Delaware Department of Labor website, the minimum wage in 2021 is $9.25 per hour. There is also a training wage of $8.75 per hour that is permitted during the first 90 days on the job. That lands the minimum weekly pay for a full-time worker (40 hours) at $370 per week and $19,240 per year. There are some loopholes though.
For instance, individuals who receive tips can be paid as little as $2.23 per hour in Delaware. Regarding tips, employers are not to take any portion of an employee’s tips unless permitted by law. Additionally, tip pooling is allowed but it is to not exceed 15% of what the employee actually received.
There are other exemptions to the minimum wage in Delaware as well. You may be paid under the hourly minimum wage working in certain positions in agriculture and domestic service. Volunteer workers, fishermen, summer camp counselors, and inmates are not guaranteed minimum wage either in the state. Handicapped employees and student workers may also be paid under the minimum wage, provided the employer has proper permission from the state government.
Cost of Living in Delaware
When it comes to cost-of-living in Delaware compared to the rest of the United States, the minimum wage requirements reflect it fairly well. Delaware is about 10% more expensive than the U.S. national average. Generally, most of the goods and services in the state cost slightly more than what the average is listed as. For example, if you want to buy a tube of toothpaste in Delaware it will cost between $2.82 and $3.47. The national average is $2.45. Movie tickets, on average, are about a dollar more expensive each.
Groceries are more expensive too. Ground beef, for instance, is around $3.80 per pound. In Delaware, the price is closer to $4.30 per pound. Potatoes, milk, and other items
When it comes to housing, the median home value in Delaware sits around $237,000. The median rent price is around $1, 350. Additionally, the average price of utilities across the state sits around $422 per month. Given this information, if you had a minimum wage, full-time job in Delaware, you would not be able to rent an apartment (in the median price range), pay utilities, and eat.
Of course, there are some things that can be controlled. You may find a cheaper place to rent or you may be able to be frugal with utilities. However, you should always ensure your housing expenses are never more than 28% of your income as a whole.
Readers, did you do additional research before moving to see what cost-of-living, minimum wage, and other things would be like in your new home?