Housing Happenings


TODAY, Join us for Happy Housers in Mountain View. SV@Home along with our co-hosts: Silicon Valley PRIDE and the County of Santa Clara Office of LGBTQ Affairs invite you to celebrate Pride Month and be in community with passionate housing advocates and supporters. All are welcome!


Housers win big!- San Jose Council votes to preserve Measure E funding for affordable housing

For months San Jose residents, community-based organizations, racial justice organizations, labor leaders, local non-profits, affordable housing developers, housing advocates, and hundreds of community leaders have organized, rallied, written letters, made calls, met with city council members, and showed up to give public testimony. The message was consistent, Save Measure E for affordable housing – we can invest in permanent homes people can afford, and support the expansion of emergency interim shelters.  We won! On Tuesday, the city council unanimously adopted our “yes, and” solution. When we come together, we are stronger.


This all began when the Mayor’s March Budget message proposed reallocating all accruing Measure E funds from prior years and all affordable housing funds from the upcoming fiscal year 2023-24 into Emergency Interim Shelters and services. This would have shifted city priorities from the comprehensive approach adopted over the last two years to one focused entirely on temporary solutions and services, effectively freezing all new permanent affordable housing development. 


Our collective actions changed the discussion. We appreciate the leadership of Councilmembers Davis, Ortiz, Torres, Cohen, and Jimenez, who authored the proposals supporting our position that determined the final vote. Interim shelters are important, potentially life-saving interventions, but shelter is not housing. And, temporary solutions alone will not solve our housing and homelessness crisis. The council action ensures roughly $75 million for new affordable housing investment in 2023-24 while maintaining resources needed to support planned investments in interim housing, homelessness prevention, and services.


The council’s action took critical additional steps.  The proposal also acknowledges the challenge of the future costs of interim shelter operations by developing a path for creating a long-term plan for sustainability. Sustaining our commitment through Measure E to permanent supportive and affordable housing will be threatened every year until we identify other sources for ongoing interim shelter costs. 


For additional information and to read our letters see below:


#MembershipMatters – Become a Member Today!


2023 Silicon Valley Pain Index Released

At SV@Home, we use data and research to influence affordable housing policy, recognizing that the displacement pressures experienced by many in Silicon Valley stem from systemic oppression and the legacy of racist policies and practices.  However, no compilation of data so clearly and succinctly illustrates the existing inequities in this region like the Silicon Valley Pain Index (SVPI) produced by the San Jose State University Human Rights Institute, published annually since 2020. 


The primary goal of the SVPI is to provide an efficient, easily digestible, statistical overview of structural inequalities to inform policy and practice in Silicon Valley. This data collection is a critical reminder that the unequal distribution of wealth and power in our region directly causes the pain and devastation experienced by our neighbors living on our streets.  As a result, the only way to end this crisis is through justice and liberatory frameworks that shift how we address the systemic injustice in housing and land ownership. We must approach this work through healing and restoration. 


Below, please see some of the statistics gathered by the SVPI and explore the full report.


1 – Ranking of San José in youth homelessness in the nation, with 85 unhoused young adults (age 18-24) for every 100,000 residents.


14 – Percent of Black and Latino households who can afford a median-priced home. Further, only 27% of all Silicon Valley residents can afford a median-priced home.


34 – Number of community members that responded to Milpitas Union Schools Districts’ request to open up a “room or a small space” for teachers in their district due to the high cost of rent.


50 – Percent of renters who are burdened by housing costs, which means they are spending more than 30% of their income on housing. This figure jumps to 58% for renters above 65.


295 – Number of eviction filings of multi-family properties in November 2022 (116 in December), which is a significant increase from 22 notices in April 2022, the first month landlords could file evictions after the suspension of state protections against evictions.


600 – Number of families that become homeless each year in Santa Clara County.

4,176 – Median monthly rent in dollars in San José, which is over a 6% increase from the previous year.


6,340 – Number of houseless people in San José on a single night in January 2023, a 5% drop from the year before.


9,903 – Number of houseless people in Santa Clara County on a single night in January 2023, a 1% drop from the year before; with about two-thirds living in encampments or other places not designed for habitation.


1.53 Million – Median sales price in dollars of an existing home in Silicon Valley in 2022, up 7% from the previous year; 76% of homes sold were above $1 million.


382 Billion – Amount in dollars of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Santa Clara County, an increase of 19% from 2019; if the county were a nation, it would be ranked as the 38th largest world economy.


Building Blocks of Victory for Tenants in Palo Alto

At the council meeting on June 5, we added another building block to the suite of proposed tenant protections in Palo Alto! 

The Palo Alto city council voted 6-1 to adopt a local and permanent “just cause” ordinance and a security deposit limit.  This action guarantees that Palo Alto renters will continue to be protected from eviction without cause even if the state protections of The Tenant Protection Act of 2019 (AB 1482) expire without a replacement law. This ordinance also has the immediate effect of extending state “just cause” protections to renters living in recently built buildings – state law only covers renters in buildings that are at least 15 years old. The council also passed an ordinance limiting landlords from charging security deposits of more than 1.5x the monthly rent. 


Since 2018, the City of Palo Alto has been exploring the adoption of a package of tenant protection policies. SV@Home worked in partnership with the City of Palo Alto from 2019 – 2021 as a community partner in a city-initiated grant from the Partnership for the Bay’s Future (PBF). This grant from the San Francisco Foundation allowed the city to gain funding and resources to study the issue. City staff demonstrated that lower-income renters are particularly vulnerable to displacement, which is true throughout the region but particularly in cities like Palo Alto where rents are extremely high. We applaud the city council in their approach to tenant protections and look forward to the next policy the council will take on – the rent registry in the Fall.   


Strengthening Sunnyvale’s Moffett Park Plan before Adopting at July Council Meeting

After five years of planning, the Moffett Park Specific Plan (MPSP or the Plan) is headed to Sunnyvale City Council for adoption Tuesday, July 11th.


SV@Home has been actively involved in this multi-year planning process, has frequently provided updates in this space, and recently hosted a virtual discussion as part of our Policy In Action Series. The plan envisions up to 20,000 new homes with 3,000 – 4,000 of them affordable. We are pleased to see a timeline pushing for adoption in July.


We are still advocating around a few minor adjustments to the plan to strengthen the likelihood of realizing the affordability goals and achieving true accessibility for people of all incomes. These requested improvements include: more clarity about how affordable housing will be prioritized in the community benefits structure; targeting a portion of the Housing Mitigation Fees collected in the MPSP area to support deeply affordable housing within the area; and satisfying inclusionary requirements for market rate housing in the plan area through affordable housing built within the plan area.  Click here to read SV@Home’s letter and both here and here for joint coalition letters, we sent with our partner organizations to the City.


We are going to need everyone’s help as we get closer to the council action on July 12.  Stay tuned for future actions you can take to support the recommendations in our letters. You can find more information on the City of Sunnyvale’s Moffett Park Specific Plan Website:


More Housing Elements certified by HCD!

On May 17, 2023, the City of Milpitas became the first jurisdiction in Santa Clara County to earn Housing Element Certification from HCD (HCD’s letter)! Milpitas was the 18th of the Bay Area’s 109 jurisdictions to have adopted a Housing Element that HCD has deemed compliant with state law, despite the January 31, 2023 deadline to do so. As of June 13th, just 27 of the Bay Area’s 109 jurisdictions have adopted a certified Element.

Mountain View, Campbell, and Los Altos Hills were also certified compliant before the end of May when a new deadline was applied to non-compliant cities. Bay Area jurisdictions that failed to adopt an HCD-certified compliant housing element by May 31, 2023, must now complete all their rezoning in just 1 year instead of 3. Read SV@Home’s recent blog post about what else can happen when cities fail to adopt a compliant Housing Element by the deadline.

What about the cities that don’t have HCD-certified Housing Elements yet?

The majority of the cities in Santa Clara County do not have Housing Elements that are certified compliant with State Law. Because the deadline has passed, these cities lose significant land use control and access to a variety of state housing and infrastructure grants. Read SV@Home’s recent blog post about what else can happen when cities fail to adopt a compliant Housing Element by the deadline.


What is the Housing Element? 

Housing Elements are a critically important 8-year plan each California city must create to meet the housing needs of all their residents, at all income levels. Learn more in SV@Home’s Housing Element Toolkit!


Save the Date! June 2023 PIA: Tenant Right to Counsel

The City of San Jose will be exploring a Tenant Right to Legal Counsel program to prevent evictions and displacement. Speakers will be announced soon!


African American Community Service Agency Presents: 42nd Annual Juneteenth (Saturday, June 17th)- The annual event celebrates Santa Clara County’s Black community and its arts, culture, and heritage, displaying the richness of African American history and culture. Themed “Juneteenth Homecoming: Our Culture, Our Freedom,” the festival is based on AACSA’s mission – to preserve the dignity and culture of a diverse African American Community and to provide services that promote the full participation of Santa Clara County and the general society – and will be located on South 1st Street in Downtown San Jose.

Latina Coalition of Silicon Valley Presents: Futura Fest (June 25th) SV@Home is excited to join this amazing talent event as an employer! At Futura Fest, the Latina Coalition is bringing together dozens of employers, mentors, and sponsors who are ready to help you take your career and life to the next level. This is not just a typical career fair—it is a dynamic and immersive experience designed to empower you with the skills, tools, and inspiration you need to unlock the future you desire. Children’s activities will be made available during the event.

Opportunity Lab Presents: 2023 Place-Based Policy Convening (July 11th)- Through O-Lab’s 2023 Convening on Regional Inequality and Place-Based Policy, co-sponsored by the W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, we will explore this shift in the research and policy landscape with a focus on what we can learn from recent legislation and pilot programs in this field and what kinds of new experimentation and evidence are still needed.  Join us for a series of panels, research presentations, and discussions from practitioners, researchers, policymakers, and advocates.

For a full list of upcoming events, visit our Events Calendar.

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