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California  + Orange County  + Apartments  | 
File photo; example of Workforce Housing via

Irvine: Trading Tax for Tenants with Workforce Housing

Irvine is moving forward with a plan to reduce the monthly rents of 1,083 apartment units – across two buildings – in favor of adding inventory to “workforce housing.”  

According to the Urban Land Institute (ULI), “workforce housing” is “housing affordable to households earning between 60 and 120 percent of area median income (AMI).” This type of housing targets middle-income workers (teachers, firefighters, retail clerks, etc). 

Nearby Anaheim, Calif., was the first municipality to adopt this “workforce” approach. 

The newly priced apartments would be geared toward individuals or families making 80% to 120% of the area’s median income (AMI), which is between $75,300 and $89,650 for a single person, or $107,550 and $128,050 for a family of four.

The new monthly rates will occur with the organic attrition of existing tenants. Nobody will be bounced for this joint-authority program.

As for foregoing the tax revenue, some school districts impacted would be eligible for backpay from the state, because they are guaranteed a level of funding per student, per the legal wording of 2020’s Proposition 98.


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Urban Land Institute

About Jason Middleton

  • ◦Development
  • ◦Policy/Gov't