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Working hours could be reduced by lowering cost of living. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the average household spends $5,111 each month on housing and other monthly expenses. $1,784 or 35% of that is for housing and $819 or 16% is for transportation. So those 51% of our working year (~6 months) is spent earning money to pay for housing and transportation - and I believe that's way more that it needs to be.

With people moving closer together into cities property prices seem to naturally skyrocket. The more densely populated an area becomes the more people seem to want to move there. So as housing supply in an area decreases the demand for it in the same area increases. Then we end up paying a lot of rent to landlords or paying a lot of money to buy the property from the previous owner - them earning money for doing basically nothing (rent seeking behavior).

Transportation cost can be reduced, hypothetically to near 0 if you work from home and never leave your home. But a more realistic scenario would be improved city planning with more mixed residential and commercial areas where you have a shorter commute to work and errands. Well working public transport is also more efficient and lower cost than driving. People in the US seem to spend a lot of time driving long distances - a big difference I noticed moving here from Europe.