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821 State Street

The property located at 821 State Street was purchased in April 2021 by an LLC whose primary investor is a local resident.  The investor was motivated to demonstrate that workforce housing can be created in downtown Santa Barbara through the adaptive re-use of existing commercial buildings. 

Since their acquisition of the property, 821 State LLC demolished the prior interior tenant improvements and worked with local architectural firm The Cearnal Collective to create a plan to turn the back half of the ground floor into four studio units and the upstairs commercial space into 10 studio units and a resident community room.  The front commercial space, which has a prime storefront on State Street, will remain a commercial use 

The approved architectural plans utilize the Santa Barbara Average Unit Density (AUD) ordinance and state bonus density program allowing conversion of the existing building into a new configuration that includes 3,000 square feet of commercial space on the front of the ground level and 7,725 square feet (14 units) of residential space on the back of the ground level and all of the second floor level.  All of the residential apartments are studio units with an average size of approximately 385 square feet.  The second floor has a community space of approximately 600 square feet that is located on the front of the building with windows looking out over State Street. 

Due to the fact that the building is a zerolot line urban building, the apartments do not have windows to the outside; rather, the apartment entry doors and windows open into a common interior atrium area which allows ample light, in addition to a number of skylights.  

821 State LLC transferred ownership of the property to the Authority’s affiliate non-profit, 2nd Story Associates, in December 2022. 2nd Story Associates sourced a construction/permanent loan in order to perform the redevelopment of the building. The property is managed by the Housing Authority. 

Construction was expected to be completed at the end of 2023, and new residents moved in in February 2024.

Click here to read about the 821 State Street Grand Opening in the local news.


3 Low-Income units at $965 per month
1 Moderate Income unit at $1,610 per month
9 Moderate-Middle Income at $1,850 per month

Income Qualifications:
Applicants must demonstrate a rent-to-income ratio of no more than 50%. Applicants must have income below 160% Area Medium Income.
160% AMI Income limit for 1 person: $165,760 2 persons: $189,440
120% AMI Income limit for 1 person: $90,132 2 persons: $103,008
80% AMI Income limit for 1 person: $ 82,950 2 persons: $94,800

More Information:
-Security Deposit will be one month’s rent
-Landlord pays all utilities
-Minimum 1 person/Maximum 2
-NO smoking allowed
-One pet considered with additional pet deposit
-Applications will be ranked according to date and time received


  • On-site management
  • Air conditioning
  • Community area overlooking State St.
  • Downtown location