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Frequently asked questions

Isn’t the Pearl District too expensive for average people?

  • Not at the Sitka. Many people are surprised at how much affordable housing there is in the Pearl District. The city of Portland has helped finance more than 1,000 apartments with income and rent restrictions in the Pearl to make sure that a wide range of Portlanders can afford to live here.

Can anyone live at the Sitka?

  • For 6 of the apartments, there are no rent and income restrictions.
  • For the other 203 apartments at the Sitka, there are two restrictions:
  • Income Restrictions
  • 131 apartments are available only to households who earn no more than 60% of the median family income (MFI) for households of their size in the Portland metropolitan area.
  • 72 are available only to households earning no more than 50% of MFI for households of their size in the Portland metropolitan area.
  • Student Status
    • Households consisting entirely of full-time students are generally not eligible to rent the income-restricted apartments. (There are some exceptions to the full-time student rule.)

How do I know I won’t get a big rent increase after I move in?

  • We have committed to keep 203 of the apartments at the Sitka affordable until at least 2065. Rents on those apartments will increase as our expenses increase, but the increases will be limited and are monitored by city and state agencies.

Is it complicated to apply?

  • There are extra forms for you to fill out and extra information for you to provide when you first apply. Our staff will need to verify your financial information so they will be doing most of the extra work.

What else is different about living here?

  • After you move in, the staff will need to re-certify your household’s income and verify your household’s student status once a year.
  • There are more inspections than in most buildings. The public agencies and the private investors who provided the financing that allow the rents to be affordable want to make sure that we're being good stewards of those resources. They come to review our records each year, to look at the building, and to inspect some percentage of the apartments.