Notice of Intent to Sell

What Is It?

The Notice of Sale ordinance, approved by Council in 2015, provides the City with information about the sale of properties with rents affordable to low-income tenants in order to support preservation of these properties. 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. For questions regarding the ordinance, please contact Prithy Korathu at  

To determine whether a unit rent is affordable to a household earning 80% of the area median income please do the following:

1.) Find the maximum rent for the unit for a household earning 80% of the area median income

2.) If your tenant pays any portion of basic utilities, use the Seattle Housing Authority utility allowance schedule, to deduct the tenant paid utilities from the 80% maximum rent.

3.) If the resulting amount is equal to or less than the current rent being paid for the unit at your property, the rent is affordable to a household earing 80% of the area median income.

For example, for a one-bedroom unit with all utilities paid by the tenant, the maximum rent that could be charged for a household earning 80% of the area median income is $1,400 ($1,505/maximum rent less $105 utility allowance - $1,400/month).

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 five or more units, and has at least one unit affordable to a household earning 80% or less of area median income.

To meet the requirements of the ordinance, owners must provide written notice to the Office of Housing at least 60 days prior to advertising the property for sale or listing it with a listing service. 

Notifications should include the following information:

  • Property owner's name
  • Property owner's phone number
  • Address of the property being listed for sale
  • Number of units

Notifications should be sent by email to 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 notify the Office of Housing of their intent to sell may be assessed a penalty of up to $500.00 per SMC 22.907.100.

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.