Located on the Central Coast of California, Santa Barbara is a beautiful beachside city with many attractive features. With the ocean on one side, gorgeous Santa Ynez mountains on the other and Mediterranean-style white stucco buildings complete with Spanish red tile roofs lining the homes in between, it is a picturesque California location that many would love to stake their claims in and get their very own Santa Barbara house in the middle of it all. Tourists come from all over to stay in one of their grand hotels and enjoy the beautiful landscape and award-winning wineries, and while they are there, just as many might start thinking about having a permanent residence in the already crowded city.

When a residential hopeful starts considering the realities and logistics of living in Santa Barbara, it might not seem like such a dream come true unfortunately. As it stands, not everyone has the same wealth as celebrities such as Oprah Winfrey, Ellen DeGeneres, Charlize Theron, Angelina Jolie or Brad Pitt, who are just a handful of the celebrities that call Santa Barbara their home. Santa Barbara real estate is famously expensive, and without that kind of money in the bank, people begin to wonder if there is any such thing as affordable housing in Santa Barbara.

This desirable place for living and working is usually always seeking employees, as they tend to have a hard time attracting and then retaining workers that are qualified for the jobs. The high cost of living makes that difficult, as there simply is not enough affordable housing for the average person to be able to live and hold down a job there. After the Santa Barbara Country Grand Jury in 2019-2020 looked into the issue, they found the need to bring in more affordable housing has increased, but they have not actually followed through with bringing affordable Santa Barbara real estate onto the market.

Since the beginning of 2018, those in charge of legislation have been passing it to require various cities to ease up their zoning processes to make housing affordable for people of any income level, and if they don’t, the state can easily overrule their legislations. It has been mandated that Santa Barbara build thousands more affordable homes by the year 2023, declaring not just a housing crisis but also a homeless crisis. The obvious fix in this situation seems to be doing what was told of them and to make each Santa Barbara house one that is actually attainable.

The problem lies in the city needing to build these homes but not having the proper resources to be able to do it, and because it is already so packed full, the city will need to expand upwards instead of outwards. In order to make it so living in Santa Barbara is not just a fairytale indeed, the city has to stop all unproductive patterns when it comes to filling itself out and become more forward-looking in their housing and real estate endeavors.