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Regional Housing Needs Assessment 6th Housing Element Cycle 2021-2029

In December 2018, the Board of Directors formed the Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA) Subcommittee to provide input and guidance to the Board regarding the RHNA Plan. The draft RHNA methodology was developed with input from staff at the cities, county, and SANDAG, as well as elected officials at the public meetings of the RHNA Subcommittee, Regional Planning Technical Working Group (TWG), Regional Planning Committee (RPC), and the Board.

On July 26, 2019, the Board released for public comment the draft RHNA methodology, which included a discussion of how the methodology was developed, how the proposed methodology furthers the RHNA objectives in state law, and how the RHNA factors in state law were incorporated. SANDAG provided a 42-day public comment period and held a public hearing on September 6, 2019. During the public comment period, SANDAG compiled supplemental information requested from Board members, prepared a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), and developed a response to comments.

On September 6, 2019, the Board approved the draft methodology and directed staff to submit the draft methodology to the State Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) for review.

Based on their review, HCD found that the draft methodology furthers the five statutory objectives.

View the draft RHNA methodology.

View requested supplemental information

View FAQs

View public comments

View response to public comments

View HCD Letter (November 1, 2019)

The Board will be asked to approve the final methodology and release the draft housing unit allocation at the meeting on November 8, 2019.

About RHNA

The Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA), mandated by state law, quantifies the need for housing and informs land use planning in addressing identified existing and future housing needs resulting from population, employment, and household growth.

As the council of governments, SANDAG is responsible for overseeing the RHNA process for the San Diego region.

SANDAG is currently overseeing the 6th cycle RHNA, which covers the planning period from 2021-2029.

Learn more information on the 5th Cycle RHNA for the planning period of 2010-2020.

The RHNA process has four main phases, discussed below. 

  1. RHNA Determination – The California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) in consultation with SANDAG calculates a regionwide housing need determination. This phase ended with the Final RHNA Determination in July 2018. Links are provided below to the public meetings in which the RHNA Determination was discussed.

Final Regional Housing Needs Assessment Determination
SANDAG RHNA Consultation Letter to HCD

Board of Directors
June 8, 2018 | May 11, 2018 | March 9, 2018

May 4, 2018 | April 6, 2018

April 12, 2018 | March 26, 2018

  1. Methodology Phase of RHNA Plan – SANDAG and its member agencies prepare a regional housing plan including a draft methodology that will later be used for allocating a share of the RHNA Determination to each jurisdiction. The draft methodology is sent to the California Department of Housing and Community Development for a 60 day review period. Links to the public meetings during which the draft methodology has been discussed are provided below.

Board of Directors
September 6, 2019 | July 26, 2019 | May 10, 2019 | December 21, 2018 | November 16, 2018 | September 14, 2018

RHNA Subcommittee
June 14, 2019 | May 24, 2019 | April 26, 2019 | March 22, 2019 | February 22, 2019 | February 8, 2019

February 1, 2019 | October 5, 2018

June 27, 2019 | June 13, 2019 | June 6, 2019 | May 9, 2019 | April 3, 2019 | March 14, 2019 | February 14, 2019 | January 10, 2019 | December 13, 2018 | October 11, 2018 | August 9, 2018

  1. Allocation Phase of RHNA Plan – After the review period by the Department of Housing and Community Development, SANDAG will adopt the final methodology. Using the adopted methodology, SANDAG will allocate a share of the RHNA Determination to each jurisdiction in four income categories.
  2. Housing Element Update – Each jurisdiction must update the housing element in its general plan to accommodate the RHNA Plan housing allocation.

Jurisdictions have until April 2021 to update their general plan housing element.

Project Manager

Seth Litchney, Senior Regional Planner
Phone: (619) 699-1943, Email:

For media inquiries, please contact the SANDAG Public Information Office at (619) 699-1950 or