Sacramento outperforms other California cities in production of affordable housing

The City of Sacramento has built more affordable housing per capita than other cities in the region and other major cities in California over the past several years, City staff reported Tuesday. 

While construction of market-rate housing citywide dipped in 2022 due to higher interest rates and other market factors, affordable housing production rose as the City invested tens of millions of dollars in housing, much of it from federal COVID-19 stimulus funds.

Sacramento permitted 1,267 units of low-and very-low-income units in 2022, 32 more units than in 2021. When measured against the population, the city’s production between 2019-2021 has topped Oakland, San Jose, San Diego, Fresno, San Francisco, and Long Beach.  

Sacramento’s affordable housing production in 2022 came close to the number assigned to the city by the state as its fair share to meet the statewide need — a rare accomplishment as most jurisdictions usually fall far short. Production of market-rate housing still trails the target by a significant amount, however.  

“The City Council and the City staff has been very deliberate over the last five to seven years to aggressively prioritize affordable housing,” said Mayor Darrell Steinberg. 

In a presentation Tuesday to City Council, staff also reported that the number of building permits issued for accessory dwelling units in Sacramento jumped by another 32 percent in 2022 after soaring 124 percent in 2021. The number of applications submitted to build ADUs rose by nearly 50 percent. 

The city has focused on increasing the construction of ADUs in the past few years and has introduced resources such as free permit-ready building plans. and lower-cost units over time because they are inherently smaller and will have lower rents than traditional single-family homes.  

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