Local Community Housing Programs

The Mountain Housing Council (MHC) has researched and consolidated the latest information on housing programs in Placer County, Nevada County, and the Town of Truckee area.

Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) Programs

An ADU is an attached or detached residential dwelling unit that provides independent living facilities in connection with a property’s primary residence. Also referred to as a second unit, in-law unit, granny flat, residential unit, and/or guest suite, these units have the ability to provide additional housing capacity without necessarily increasing sprawl. Junior Accessory Dwelling Unit (JADU) is a conversion of existing space that is contained entirely within an existing single-family residence.

Recent ADU laws passed by the State of California have helped to reduce barriers and streamline the process to ADU creation. Property owners may now build both a junior ADU and either a converted ADU or a detached ADU on the same lot, and a multi-family property may have up to two detached ADUs. Short-term rental of a new secondary dwelling unit is prohibited. Visit each jurisdiction’s website for specific information.

For additional information, check out MHC’s ADU White Paper.

Program in Place: Yes- Learn More

Applicability & Zoning:

Recent amendments by the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA) now allow ADUs on parcels zoned for residential use in the Placer County portion of the Tahoe Basin and are subject to additional regulations.

In the Tahoe Basin, a Secondary Residential Units shall only be located on lots that are greater than one acre or on any parcel zoned single-family, if the parcel is deed restricted to prohibit the secondary residence to be converted to a tourist use or utilized as a vacation rental, and is deed restricted for affordable, moderate, or achievable incomes consistent with TRPA Code Section 21.3.2.B.3.

Fee Offsets & Waivers: No impact fees will be assessed for units less than 750 square feet. For a unit that is 750 square feet or more, the impact fees are proportional to the primary unit.

Website for more Information: https://www.placer.ca.gov/accessoryhomes

FREE Plans available: Select from free plans provided here.

Program in Place: No. Contact the Planning or Building Department at 530-265-1222 for more information.

Applicability & Zoning:  Additional standards, including maximum allowable sizes, can be found in Sec. L-II 3.19.1 and  Sec. L-11 3.19.2.

Fee Offsets & Waivers: Impact fees are proportional to the ADU square-footage.

Website for More Information: https://www.mynevadacounty.com/3228/Accessory-Dwelling-Units-ADUs

FREE Plans available: N/A

Program in Place: Yes- Learn More

Applicability & Zoning: ADUs are allowed in all zoning districts that allow single-family and multifamily dwelling residential uses subject to compliance with the development standards of the underlying zoning district for the primary dwelling and the requirements of this Section 18.58.025.

Fee Offsets & Waivers: Impact fees are proportional to the ADU square-footage.

Website for more Information: https://www.townoftruckee.com/government/housing/accessory-dwelling-units

FREE Plans Available: No

ADU Loans and Mini Grants: Yes

Down Payment Assistance Programs

Specialized loan programs for local homebuyers are available across our region. These programs provide down payment assistance in a variety of forms. Please contact each program directly for more information.

Workforce Housing Preservation Program

The Workforce Housing Preservation Program can help homebuyers with down payments or to complete renovations in exchange for deed restriction. The program pays homebuyers up to 16%, or up to $150,000, of purchase price towards a down payment (based on available funding).  The financial assistance does not need to be paid back.  Additional financing assistance may potentially be used in conjunction with the Workforce Housing Preservation Program.

First Time Homebuyer Assistance Program

This program provides flexible second mortgages to help families purchase their first home in the unincorporated areas of Placer County.

Minimum Requirements

  • Meet the definition of a first time homebuyer.
  • Be pre-approved for a first mortgage loan.
  • Make less than 80% of Placer County’s Median Income for your household size.
  • Have 3% of the total purchase price avialable at the time of application.

The HOME First Time Homebuyer Downpayment Assistance Program

The program provides “gap” financial assistance in the form of a low simple interest loan to be used for down payment and/or closing costs within certain limits.

Minimum Requirements

  • Pre-qualification letter from the Nevada County office. Submitting an offer on a property prior to receiving the Pre-Qualification letter will result in program ineligibility.
  • Meet the low to moderate income levles set by Nevada County.
  • The purchase price/value of the house cannot exceed $ $404,000.


The Town of Truckee currently offers loan products for qualified applicants – the CalHome and BEGIN Loan Product for First-Time Home Buyers.

First-Time Homebuyer Program CalHome Reuse Funds

As existing loans funded with the CalHome Program are repaid the funds become available for loan through the Town’s CalHome Reuse Fund Program. Applications for these funds are processed as available on a first-come-first served basis.

Minimum Requirements

  • Meet the definition of a first-time homebuyer.
  • Make at or less than 80% of the Median Income for your household

First-Time Homebuyer Program Begin Reuse Funds

As existing loans funded with the BEGIN Program are repaid the funds become available for loan through the Town’s BEGIN Reuse Fund Program.

Minimum Requirements

  • Meet the definition of a first-time homebuyer.
  • The applicant’s household income, from all sources, for all members of the household over 18 years of age, must be at or below 120% of the median (current maximum incomes listed below).

Martis Fund Homebuyer Assistance Program

In partnership with the Martis Fund, Sierra Business Council administers the Martis Fund Homebuyer Assistance Program, which provides down payment assistance to help income-qualified working families in Placer County east of Donner Summit or in the Town of Truckee purchase homes.

The Martis Fund’s DPAP program is providing loans up to $100,000 for qualified applicants. To reduce the day-to-day costs of homeownership, all principal and interest payments on the down payment assistance loans are deferred until the time a home is sold. A borrower may choose between paying deferred interest at either 3 percent compounded annually or based on a share of the home’s appreciation at the time of sale.

Minimum Requirements

  • The buyer’s household income may not be more than 180 percent of the Placer County median income.
  • Participants cannot currently own a home or have been on title to real property or on title to a manufactured home unit within the last 12 months. At least 51% of household income must come from employment within the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District Boundaries.

Deed-Restricted Homeownership Programs

Deed-restricted homeownership is a mechanism for preserving the long-term affordability of housing through legal requirements that run with the property for the term of the restriction. Restriction terms vary and requirements can include income requirements, appreciation caps, or fulltime residency requirements.

Workforce Housing Preservation Program

The program pays homebuyers up to 16% of purchase price, or up to $150,000, towards a down payment (based on available funding) in exchange for deed restricting their home so that it can only be occupied by local workers. The funding can help homebuyers with down payments or complete renovations. The financial assistance does not need to be paid back.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Must have at least one household member who is currently employed 30 or more hours per week at an employment site within the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District geographical boundary that is less than or equal to 20 driving miles from the property (a 20% variance may be granted by the Program Administrator)
  • Homebuyers must have a minimum of 4% of the sale price available as a down payment.

Home eligibility:

  • The house must be in eastern Placer County.
  • Property may be rented on a short-term basis for no more than 30 days each calendar year.
  • Property may be rented to a qualified occupant who meets local employment criteria.

Future Home Sales:

  • If the house is sold in the future, it must be sold to a household that has at least one household member who meets the local worker criteria which may impact future sales price
  • Homeowner may rent house to a household that has at least one household member who meets the local worker criteria.

Hopkins Village
Is a deed-restricted housing development located in Martis Valley.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Household income below 180% of Area Median Income 
  • Work an average of at least 30 hours per week
  • Employment site is located within the Tahoe-Truckee Unified School District boundary

    Deed Restriction

    • During the first five years of ownership, the home can only be sold to another qualified owner who meets the employment and household income requirements.
    • After the first five years of ownership, the home can only be sold to another qualified owner who meets the employment requirements.

    No program in place.


    Town of Truckee’s Truckee Home Access Program (THAP) pays buyers, sellers, businesses, and developers to reserve homes for income qualified local workers using a fifty-five-year deed restriction.

    Buyers can apply for compensation up to $150,000 for a maximum $937,500 home purchase price. Payment can be used for down payment assistance, renovations, or other expenses.

    Sellers can sell at a reduced price and apply for compensation to make up the difference between the reduced price and the appraised value.

    Local Businesses can apply for compensation to rent or sell homes to local workers, including their own.

    Developers can apply for compensation to build homes for sale or rent to local workers.

    Download the Program Guidelines here
    Truckee Home Access Program FAQs
    Download THAP Flyer: Englishespañol


    Workforce Rental Programs

    Programs that aim to unlock existing housing stock for the local workforce.

    Placer County launched the Lease to Locals Program August 1, 2022. The program includes a set of incentive grants ranging from $2,000 to $18,000 for qualified homeowners to rent to locally employed tenants for 5- to 12-month-plus lease arrangements.  Click here to learn how the program works.


    No program in place.


    The Town of Truckee Lease to Locals Program aims to unlock existing housing stock for the local workforce. The program includes a set of incentives ($2,000-$18,000) for homeowners that shift from renting their home short-term — or not renting at all — to 5 to 12 month-plus lease arrangements with locally employed tenants. Click here to learn how the program works.

    Homeless Services and Supportive Housing

    North Tahoe-Truckee Homeless Services, AMI Housing Inc. provides a number of services to our community members in need, including the Emergency Warming Center, Day Respite Center, street outreach, case management, and housing support.

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