Housing Action Plan

The City of Renton received a grant from the Washington State Department of Commerce to create a Housing Action Plan in 2021. The Renton City Council adopted the Final Housing Action Plan in October. The Housing Action Plan answers these important questions:

  • How much additional housing will be necessary to meet the diverse needs of Renton’s current and future households?
  • How effective are the city’s current policies at ensuring adequate housing options?
  • How can the city, residents, and businesses work together to improve Renton’s housing options?
  • What are Renton residents’ preferred strategies for increasing affordable housing?
  • How can Renton work with its neighboring communities to meet the need for housing?
  • How do we prevent our current residents from being displaced by future development?

The Housing Action Plan is action-oriented and focuses on near-term solutions to increase housing availability and affordability. Recommendations will guide the City's future actions over the next five years.

The Final Housing Action Plan is now available. 
You can find more detail below or by watching Housing Action Plan video series: 

Project Timeline

The Renton Housing Action Plan received a timeline extension from the Department of Commerce and adopted the Final Housing Action Plan in October 2021.

Housing Action Plan Advisory Committee

The HAP Advisory Committee provided guidance on the project process and analysis, as well as the contents of the final Housing Action Plan. The advisory committee was comprised of community and housing stakeholders, representing the for- and non-profit housing sectors. 

Details of the HAP Advisory Committee meetings can be found below.

Advisory Committee Meeting #1

Held June 22, 4:00 - 5:30 PM

Advisory Committee Meeting #2

Advisory Committee Meeting #3

Scheduled for October 7, 1:30-3:00

Advisory Committee Meeting #4

Scheduled for January 13, 2:00-4:00

Advisory Committee Meeting #4b

Scheduled for February 24th, 2:00-4:00

The Housing Action Plan

The Housing Action Plan was guided by policy principles and goals developed from community engagement conducted from March 2020 to March 2021. Outreach and engagement activities were conducted in accordance with the State’s public health guidelines in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. A summary of engagement activities and themes can be found in the Appendix B: What We Heard.

The HAP puts forward six Strategic Recommendations aligned to the Principles to achieve the Goals. These represent a broad set of actions that the City can pursue over the next five years. Under Implementation, detailed matrix is included to help guide and measure the City's progress.

Housing Needs Assessment

The Housing Action Plan drew on an assessment of housing needs that was looked at two ways - first, by looking at all of South King County; then by looking at Renton, specifically. 

South King County Sub-Regional Framework

Prepared by ECONorthwest, the Sub-Regional Framework was a coordination effort between Auburn, Burien, Federal Way, Kent, Renton, and Tukwila to develop a sub-regional housing framework to help guide individual Housing Action Plans. 

Renton Housing Needs Assessment

Prepared by BERK, Consulting Inc., the Housing Needs Assessment draws on the work of the Sub-Regional Framework with the intent of providing a data-derived context for policy choices and recommendations going forward. 

The full Housing Needs Assessment provides context on the Renton housing market by evaluating a range of housing-related topics, including:

  • Population and household characteristics of Renton residents
  • Local workforce
  • Current Renton housing inventory and historical rates of housing production
  • Local housing market characteristics
  • Cost burden and existing housing gaps
For a shorter read, the Housing Needs Summary identify broad findings from the larger report. The summary document is available in English, Spanish, or Vietnamese below:

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Housing Action Plan?

Renton’s Housing Action Plan will provide the city ‘how to’ guidance for encouraging the development of additional housing options in Renton. The planning process will bring together demographic, housing, and economic expertise, along with community feedback and input, to determine the best strategies and actions for the city to take. The plan will be completed and adopted by City Council by April 2021 and guide the city for the next 5 years.

Will the Housing Action Plan address the cost of housing?

Since 2010, Renton has added more than 5,481 households but only 3,940 new housing units. With increased competition for housing, housing prices have gone up significantly for all income groups. The Housing Action Plan will address the need for housing, including how to ensure there is housing available for all income groups.

Who is paying for the Housing Action Plan?

The City of Renton received a grant from the Washington State Department of Commerce to develop a housing action plan. Governor Jay Inslee and the state legislature are concerned about the growing housing crisis in Washington State. In 2019, a bill to encourage increased housing options in Washington (E2SHB 1923) was passed into law. The bill emphasizes community choice in deciding how to increase housing density and made funds available to support local governments’ efforts to increase housing supply. As part of this effort, Renton received a planning assistance grant through the Washington State Department of Commerce to conduct a public process and develop a housing action plan.

Doesn’t Renton already have an affordable housing plan?

The City of Renton works to improve housing options through community development, planning, and working with Renton Housing Authority and other partners to develop affordable housing. For the past several years, the City has been focused on understanding and addressing emerging affordability needs, both in Renton and in King County generally. This includes participating in regional efforts such as the King County Regional Affordable Housing Task Force (RAHTF) and the South King Housing and Homelessness Partners (SKHHP). Based on a preliminary analysis of housing needs, City staff have created an immediate workplan for supporting affordable housing in Renton. The Washington State Department of Commerce grant enables Renton to conduct a more comprehensive needs assessment and conduct a broader community conversation of housing needs, preferences, and policy options.

What is affordable housing?

Affordable housing enables households to be secure in their home while having enough resources left to meet their daily needs. In general, “affordable housing” means housing that costs less than 30% of a household’s income. Renton has housing affordable to households across the income spectrum, but not enough for households with income less than the county median. Even with affordable housing options, households with very low incomes generally cannot find affordable housing in the private market. Some households with very low incomes receive public subsidies to help cover the cost of housing, however subsidy programs are only able to assist a small portion of the households that qualify.

Will this plan help decrease my rent or help me find a home?

The planning process and Housing Action Plan will not impact individuals’ housing costs, but it will help address affordability needs in the community over the next 5 years. The plan will guide how the City regulates land use within its boundaries and housing and development policy updates. It is important that the Housing Action Plan reflects the experience and needs of all residents, particularly those currently struggling to meet their housing needs in Renton. If you are currently at risk of losing your home, you can find the services most relevant to you by calling 211 or visiting 211.org.

Get Involved

Get involved by sharing the About the Project flyer or video and tagging #HousedInRenton.

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