What is multi-family residential housing?
The term “multi-family” differentiates housing with multiple living units as opposed to single-family detached homes. Multi-family can be further broken into various categories such as an apartment, townhouse, or duplex. Apartments are individual dwelling units for rent within a portion of a building. Townhouse and condominiums are individually owned dwelling units, typically with shared ownership of common areas, and may be owner occupied or rented.
Another important term is “density” or the number of housing units per acre of land. Single-family houses on large lots are low density, whereas high density can accommodate more housing units within the same land area.
Existing multi-family housing in Sedona
There are a total of 885 units of multi-family housing in the city. For comparison, there are 5,326 single-family detached housing units in the city. The total number of built housing units in the city, including mobile homes, is 6,516. To provide yet another comparison, there are more lodging units in the city than there are multi-family units (2,527 lodging to 885 multi-family units).
Among the city’s various types of housing, multi-family housing makes up approximately 14% of all housing units (see Existing Housing Types chart). In comparison, the national average is 32% multi-family (U.S. Census Bureau). The chart “Types of Multi-family Housing” breaks down the city’s existing multi-family into 3 different categories with the number of units for each type.
Zoning: current multi-family residential zones
There are 4,513 acres of land in the city zoned for residential housing. Of that, 60 acres are within one of three multi-family zoning districts (RM-1, RM-2, and RM-3). Of the 60 acres, 18 acres are now vacant. Considering the allowable density of the vacant land, a maximum of 220 new multi-family units could be built. However some of the 18 acres may be unbuildable due to topography or other constraints. The RM-3 zoning district allows for a maximum of 20 units per acre. 18 acres of land in the city is currently zoned RM-3 and only 2 acres of that is vacant, which would allow for a maximum of 40 new units on land zoned RM-3.
|Multi-family Zoning Districts and Acreage|
|RM-1 Medium Density Multi-family Residential
|RM-2 High Density Multi-family Residential
|RM-3 High Density Multi-family Residential||20 units/acre||18|
|All other residentially zoned property
(e.g. single family residential and planned residential developments):
Challenges to the availability of multi-family housing in Sedona
There are many challenges to providing diverse and affordable housing options such as multi-family housing, such as:
• A diminishing supply of vacant land
• Zoning limitations (as described above)
• The cost of land
• The historic trend in Sedona for single-family homes
• Short-term vacation rentals
For more information on these challenges, review the pdf: Challenges to the availability of multi-family housing in Sedona