Study finds region’s housing need is 9,500 units

The Truckee Town Council on Tuesday received an update from the Mountain Housing Council on preliminary findings regarding housing shortages in the North Tahoe-Truckee region.

Based on findings from the study, the region’s unmet housing need is roughly 9,500 units — a number Council member David Polivy called “alarming,” and one that marks a 1,000-unit increase since the prior 2016 analysis.

“It’s not necessarily the number of housing units that need to be built, though that is definitely a key component of addressing this issue,” said Jake Cranor, senior associate of Economic & Planning Systems, Inc., the town’s consultant on its regional housing implantation plan. “This really refers to households, who are experiencing either overcrowded housing units, they are overburdened in terms of housing costs, which means they pay more than 30% of their gross wages … Thirdly, they are under housed, meaning they don’t have adequate facilities like plumbing or kitchens or things of that nature.”

The study showed that much of the additional unmet demand since the 2016 analysis was due to an increase in local workforce need for housing, which jumped in demand by more than 600 units. The study, which used data from 2019, also showed Truckee has nearly 14,000 housing units, of which 6,050 are primary residences. The town also has a demand for 4,742 housing units.

Of those facing housing problems, the study found 84.19% of those earning less than 30% of the area median family income face overburdened, overcrowded, or under housing situations. For those making between 30% and 60% of the area median family income, 72.47% face housing problems. The study also showed that one- to two-bedroom units are in greatest demand in the region.

The Mountain Housing Council is scheduled to next meet Friday, July 23.


Two businesses were recognized during Tuesday’s Town Council meeting, as part of Truckee’s Small Business, Big Applause program.

With two locations in Truckee, Coffeebar was selected for an award, which recognizes businesses that have persevered throughout the pandemic while following local and state guidelines and restrictions.

Cedar House Sport Hotel was also recognized with a Small Business, Big Applause award. The hotel on Brockway Road has been in Truckee for 15 years, and was able to make it through a year in which the lodging industry went through several tiers of restrictions.

“It has been a challenging year, but it’s also been a good year,” said Owner Patty Baird. “I accept this for our entire team. They’re truly my inspiration to continue to be creative and productive for another 15 years.”

Justin Scacco is a reporter for the Sierra Sun. Contact him at or 530-550-2643

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