In San Luis Obispo County, finding affordable housing is a long-standing challenge faced by those with low, moderate and even above-moderate income levels. Abounding with tourism, a top-notch university, and a healthy, vibrant culture, the county is a desirable location for all, but not all can afford to both work and live here. San Luis Obispo County defines “workforce housing” as households earning less than 160% of the county median income. To paint a picture of the challenge, the median income in the county as of 2015 was $59,454; the median home price was $500,000, compared to a state average price of $489,310. For industry leaders, recruiting and retaining employees is a challenge due to the disparity between income levels and housing prices, causing some companies to have a shortage of highly-skilled employees.
Led by industry leaders of all six business clusters, the Workforce Housing Initiative is designed to foster collaboration between the public and private sector to drive housing solutions in our county.
As part of the initiative, the EVC and its partners have conducted a Workforce Housing Survey, held at an Annual Workforce Housing Summit, and continue to engage with local government on pertinent policies, such as San Luis Obispo County’s Workforce Housing Ordinance.