(Hat tip: Diana) There's a very interesting article on The Simple Dollar which discusses the differences in costs now versus the past, and why it's actually much more difficult for a young person or couple to "get ahead" now than it has been in the past. Adjusting for inflation, et al, people are taking home less pay, homes are more expensive, education is more expensive, and minimum requirements and essentials for getting and keeping a job have grown.
This led me to wonder if this was true as well of young couples in the Orthodox Jewish world: Do we face more "start-up" costs as compared to generations past? I wish I had information to back this up, but a quick guess would be that Jewish inflation has far outpaced actual inflation and wage growth. I also believe that societal standards in the Orthodox community, even the base standards, are substantially higher than in the past. Anyone have any actual data, input, or even guesses?