Notice of Intent to Sell

What Is It?

The Notice of Intent to Sell ordinance reauthorized by Council in 2019, provides the City with information about the intention to sell residential rental property with at least one unit rented at 80% of Area Median Income (AMI) or below. The City, in partnership with the Seattle Housing Authority and community partners, can use the notification information to evaluate properties and deploy a range of property preservation tools, including incentives and acquisition. The notice can also help residents seek tenant protections and relocation resources if necessary. For questions regarding the ordinance, please contact Jessica Gomez at jessica.gomez@seattle.gov.  

To determine whether a unit rent is affordable to a household earning 80% of AMI please refer to the schedule below. Please be sure to account for any utilities the tenant is responsible for:

Responsibilities of Property Owners 

The Notice of Sale ordinance requires owners of multi-family housing to notify the City of their intent to sell their property if it includes 2 or more units and has at least one unit affordable to a household earning 80% or less of AMI.

Notice Requirements and Penalties

No later than 90 days prior to the building being listed for sale, owners must:

  • Submit to OH a declaration affirming that the owner has complied with the notice requirements
  • Prominently post a notice in the building in all common spaces, clearly visible to building tenants, that states the owner's intent to sell the building
  • If an owner receives an offer to purchase a building prior to listing or advertising it for sale, and the owner intends to accept the offer, the owner must provide the notices and declaration listed about within two days of receiving the offer. 

Notifications should be sent by email to IntentToSell@Seattle.gov or by mail to Office of Housing, P.O. Box 94725, Seattle, WA  94725-4725. 

Penalty for Non-Compliance

A property owner who fails to comply with the notice requirements a civil penalty may be assessed of up to $2000.00 per Seattle Municipal Code 22.907.030

Information for Affordable Housing Developers

The list of properties that have provided sale notification is available to affordable housing developers and community members interested in preservation opportunities. To receive the list, please enter your email address in the form at right.

Information for Tenants

What does this mean for the Tenants?

This notification allows for tenants to become aware of the potential sale of their building. From the date the notice is posted.

How can I get help if I need to relocate?

The Tenant Relocation Assistance Ordinance within the Seattle Department of Construction & Inspections as a program that could help with the cost of relocation

Does this mean I have to relocate now?

This notice is NOT a termination of your tenancy. Both tenants who are on a fixed term lease with a future termination date, and tenants who are on a month-to-month lease (including verbal leases) have protections when a building containing 2+ rental units is advertised for sale.

  • Tenants who are on month-to-month leases are protected under Seattle's Just Cause Ordinance to remain in their units when a building with 2+ rental units is for sale.
  • Tenants on fixed term leases with a future termination date are protected until the termination date named on their lease.

Tenant Protection Resources

   City of Seattle    206.615.0808
   Puget Sound Sage    https://www.pugetsoundsage.org
   Washington Community Action Network      https://www.washingtoncan.org/housingjustice  
   Tenants Union

Resources to Help with Purchasing of a Building

   Down Payment Assistance (2-4 unit buildings)  

   Homesight  

   Community Land Trust    Homstead