What is affordable housing?

Housing is affordable when it costs no more than 30% of a household’s monthly gross income. The San Diego region is one of the least affordable in the country. Many San Diego residents, whose work we rely on every day – to harvest our food, care for and educate our children, maintain our homes and yards, and safeguard our communities, do not make enough to pay for rent and utilities by working one full time job. To learn how many jobs it takes to afford the fair market rent in San Diego, click here.

children's play area in front of affordable apartment building
employee in uniform looking at computer

Our region needs more affordable housing

In order to meet the needs of current residents and future growth, each municipality in the region – 18 Cities and the County – must identify its needs and adopt and implement a plan, called a Housing Element, to meet those needs. The plan must be updated every 8 years, and monitored annually to chart the municipality’s progress. To learn more about the affordable housing needs of your city, the region, and state click here. To compare San Diego’s population changes between the 2 most recent Censuses click here.

Our economy depends on affordable housing

“The high cost of housing poses a threat to the state’s economic future and widens inequality. Not surprisingly, Californians identify housing affordability and homelessness as among the most important issues facing the state. PPIC  examines current and emerging housing needs and highlights the role of public policies in addressing the state’s housing crisis.” To learn more, visit PPIC.

To find affordable housing in the San Diego Region, click here. If you live in affordable housing and have questions about your rights or need help enforcing affordable housing requirements, you may apply for legal help.

apartment buildings exterior

You can help solve our affordable housing crisis

  • Contact your City or County to learn how to support local affordable housing. Click here
  • Learn about your jurisdiction’s and the region’s housing needs, plans and performance. Click here
  • Support affordable housing development in the region. Click here 
  • Let your state representatives know you support affordable housing. Click here
  • Join the National Low Income Housing Coalition’s Housed Campaign. Click here
  • Contact your federal representatives to ask them to commit to universal, stable and affordable housing. Click here
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