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The Planning Services division seeks to improve the quality of life of all citizens, including lower-income individuals and families living in Salisbury’s most distressed neighborhoods. We facilitate the stabilization and revitalization of these areas by increasing the supply and condition of affordable housing, developing long-range economic development and reinvestment strategies targeted to these areas, encouraging new infrastructure construction, and supporting public service providers like Rowan Helping Ministries, the Family Crisis Council, and the Salisbury Community Development Corporation.

The City of Salisbury receives funding from two federal programs administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD): the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program and the HOME Investment Partnerships (HOME) Program. Through a transparent public outreach process in which citizens are encouraged to comment on the use of these funds, Planning Services is able to achieve community development objectives and promote Salisbury's common well-being.


CDBG & COVID-19 | Action Plans | Five-Year Plans | Performance Reports


Fair Housing | Resources | Tenants | Landlords

2020-2024 Consolidated Plan

The City of Salisbury is in the process of developing a FY 2020 – 2024 Consolidated Plan. Policies and priorities outlined in this plan will shape nearly $2 million in federal investment over the next four years.

What is the Consolidated Plan?

The consolidated planning process is a federal requirement for states and jurisdictions that receive entitlement resources through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). It is intended to be used as a tool to assess affordable housing and community development needs through public input and market analysis. The Consolidated Plan is updated every five years and submitted to HUD. All projects and initiatives funded over the planning period must tie back to the policies and priorities outlined in this plan. For more information about the consolidated planning process, please visit HUD Exchange.

In addition to the Plan, Salisbury is required to complete an Annual Action Plan, which specifies project and program information about how the funds are intended to be used to meet the priority needs in a given year. At the end of each year, the City is required to submit a Consolidated Annual Performance and Evaluation Report (CAPER) which details how the City spent its federal funds and whether or not the City met the goals set forth in the Consolidated Plan and Annual Action Plan during that year. Past plans and reports can be accessed below.

Federal Resources Included in the Plan

The Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program is a flexible funding resource that can be used for both housing and community development activities, including those that revitalize neighborhoods, promote economic development, and improve community facilities, infrastructure and services in low-moderate income communities. The City partners with the Salisbury Community Development Corporation to administer this program and anticipates receiving $320,000 each year.

The HOME Investment Partnerships (HOME) program supports building, buying, and/or rehabilitating affordable housing for rent, homeownership, or provides direct rental assistance to low-income residents. The City partners with the Salisbury Community Development Corporation to administer this program and anticipates receiving $130,000 each year.

2015-2019 Consolidated Plan

The 2015-2019 Consolidated Plan identified a major and ongoing problem in Salisbury: the cost of housing, including rental units, continues to exceed the ability of low-wage households to pay without experiencing a significant cost burden. The consolidated plan elaborates upon the need to increase the supply of high-quality, affordable housing in Salisbury.

2015-19 Consolidated Five Year Plan (PDF)

Review and Comment on the Draft Plan

Community Planning Services is receiving comments on the draft plan until June 12th. Written comments can be submitted via email to or via mail to:
Attn: Hannah Jacobson
132 North Main Street
Salisbury, NC 28144

City Council will receive a presentation on the Draft on May 19th and consider approval on June 16th. More details will be posted at a later date.

Review Draft Plan (PDF)

Consolidated Plan Contact

Hannah Jacobson, Planning Director
(704) 638-5230

Review Draft Plan (PDF)
Watch Video Presentation


On April 2, 2020, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced an initial allocation of $168,950.00 in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding to Salisbury to prevent, prepare for, and respond to the coronavirus (CDBG-CV) through the CARES Act. HUD requires that the City receive public comment, prepare an Action Plan Amendment that documents the proposed use of funds, and publish it for additional public input. Proposals must be consistent with the objectives and requirements of the funding program. For the CDBG Program, the primary objective of the program is the development of viable communities by the provision of decent housing, a suitable living environment, and expanded economic opportunities, principally for persons of low- and moderate-income. More information on the CDBG Program is available here.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Who are eligible sub-recipients of the funding?

Public service agencies, not for profits, for profits, and businesses that are American owned and operated within the Salisbury City limits who help assist in developing the City of Salisbury by providing decent housing, a suitable living environment, and expanding economic opportunities, principally for persons of low- and moderate-income persons within our community.

What are some examples of eligible activities that can be funded?

Eligible activities must assist the City in meeting the goals of the FY2015-19 current Consolidated Plan as well as the CDBG Program National Objectives. The goals and objectives are outlined below:
  • Owner occupied units
    The objective is to create a suitable, decent living environment that is safe, affordable and sustainable for low to moderate income residents of the City of Salisbury.
  • Emergency Rehabilitation
    The goal of emergency rehabilitation is to meet the emergency need of residents to provide decent housing
  • Acquisition/Rehab/Resale
    Purchase of vacant/abandoned property, rehabilitating and reselling to low- moderate income families.
  • Public Improvements & Infrastructure
    Providing improvements and updates to aging infrastructure.
  • Public Services
    Partnering with Public Service agencies that provide, assist, and meet specific needs of City of Salisbury residents.
  • Down Payment Assistance
    Assistance for low to moderate first-time buyers with down payment.

The authorizing statute of the CDBG program requires that each activity funded except for program administration and planning activities must meet one of the three national objectives. The three national objectives are:

  • Benefit low- to moderate- income (LMI) persons
  • Aid in the prevention or elimination of slums or blight and;
  • Meeting a need having a particular urgency (referred to as urgent need)

What is the process and timeline for dispersing the funds?

Project proposals will be accepted through May 8, 2020 at 5:00 pm. This is a competitive application process for limited funding. Applicants that meet the minimum criteria are not guaranteed an award and those that are successful may be funded for less than the amount requested. A selection committee will review all applications to ensure that project proposals are beneficial to meeting the goals outlined in the City’s Consolidated and Action Plans (see rating criteria below). After review, funding recommendations will be made to City Council. No contracts can be executed until project/program approval has been received and approved by the Mayor and City Council.

Below is the anticipated timeline for getting initial CDBG-CV funds allocated from the CARES Act into the community.

Tuesday, May 5, 2020 Conduct Public Hearing – City Council Meeting
Friday, May 22, 2020 Deadline for Sub-Recipient Applications
Thursday, May 14, 2020 Draft Amendment Published; beginning 5-day public comment
Tuesday, June 2, 2020 City Council Meeting. Presentation of Draft Plan Amendment with a request that Council consider approval.
Wednesday, June 3, 2020 Submission of Plan Amendment to HUD
June/July 2020 Finalize Contracts with approved Sub-Recipients

How will applications be evaluated?

A selection committee will review applications according to the rubric outlined below to inform a recommendation. Final decisions will be rendered by the City Council.

Rating Factors Maximum Points
Project overview, soundness of approach and quality of proposed program/project in relation to the identified need 20
Strategy to assist the community in addressing an identified need and meeting objectives 20
Capacity of the applicant, relevant organizational experience, and past performance 20
Cost effectiveness, leveraging funding, and sustainability 25
Other – Overall impression and completion of all materials required 15
Total 100

Contact Us

Planning Director

(704) 638-5230

Action Plans

Planning Services Division staff conduct at least two neighborhood meetings annually to receive comments and proposals from citizens and public service organizations regarding the use of CDBG & HOME funds. A draft budget is then developed based on both the public input received at these meetings as well as other identified needs. The budget is typically considered by City Council in early April and then made available for additional public comment for 30 days and finally is submitted to HUD before the federal deadline. You can use the following links to view current and previous community development budgets adopted by City Council. 

Performance Reports

The City of Salisbury Housing & Neighborhood Revitalization Program aims to increase the supply of quality housing affordable for low-wealth families and to improve the livability and sustainability of distressed urban neighborhoods. To help accomplish this, the City receives Community Development Block Grant CDBG and HOME Investment Partnership dollars from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Working in collaboration with its housing non-profit partner, Salisbury Community Development Corporation, Inc. (CDC), the City is able to leverage other resources, such as low-interest loans from local banks for eligible applicants and grants from local and state agencies, and then strategically invest these resources to help achieve the goals of the program.

The Consolidated Annual Performance and Evaluation Report (CAPER) is prepared annually for HUD on the success of the program and how the CDBG and HOME Investment Partnership dollars were spent in Salisbury.

Fair Housing

You Are Protected from Housing Discrimination

The Fair Housing Act protects you from discrimination when you are renting, buying, or securing financing for any housing. You may not be denied housing because of your race, color, religion, national origin, gender, familial status (families with children), and/or disability. These are protected classes. If any of the following has happened to you, you may have been illegally denied your right to Fair Housing because of your class membership:

  • You are told a house or apartment is not available when it really is.
  • You are denied the right to rent or buy a house or apartment because you have children, or you are told your family is too large.
  • A landlord refuses to rent to you because you are physically disabled or refuses to make reasonable changes in the lease to enable you to use and enjoy your home comfortably, such as install a wheelchair ramp or widen doorways.
  • Because of your skin color, a bank or other lending institution refuses to lend you money to buy real estate, or the institution changes the requirements for lending you money.
Anyone who has control over residential property must follow the law. This includes rental managers, property owners, real estate agents, landlords, banks, developers, builders, and individual homeowners who are selling or renting their property.

What is Prohibited?

  • False denial of availability: advising someone because of their class membership that there are no available units when, in fact, there are;
  • Refusal to deal: refusing to rent, sell – or even negotiate – with a person because of class membership;
  • Discriminatory terms and conditions and provision of services or facilities: giving less favorite terms in sales or rental agreements because of class membership;
  • Discriminatory advertising: indicating any preference, limitation or discrimination because of class membership;
  • Financial discrimination: denying any type of home loan for discriminatory reasons by lenders, including banks, savings and loan associations, insurance companies, and others, or giving less favorite loan terms because of class membership;
  • Refusal to permit a reasonable modification to the unit at the expense of the person with a disability, in order that the person may not have full enjoyment of the unit;
  • Denial of a reasonable accommodation to the rules and regulations of rental in order that the person with a disability may have equal opportunity to use and fully enjoy their unit.

Disability Rights

People with disabilities have the right to use and enjoy their homes comfortably. The Fair Housing Act and the North Carolina Fair Housing Act both prohibit discrimination against individuals who are disabled or who are associated with people with disabilities. If you or someone associated with you has a physical or mental disability, your landlord may not:

  • Refuse your request to make reasonable modifications to your home, at your expense, that allow you to fully utilize and enjoy your home. Examples of reasonable modifications include:
    • Installing a wheelchair ramp;
    • Installing grab bars in the bathroom;
    • Widening doorways.
  • Refuse your request to make reasonable accommodations in rules, policies, practices or services that allow you to live in a property on an equal basis with people without disabilities. Examples of reasonable accommodations include:
    • Allowing a service or therapy animal, despite a no-pet policy;
    • Allowing a tenant to have a live-in aide who is not on the lease to assist with daily care.

Have You Experienced Housing Discrimination?

If you believe you may have experienced housing discrimination, there are resources available to you. The North Carolina Human Relations Commission investigates fair housing complaints in the State, and Legal Aid of NC offers confidential assistance to victims of housing discrimination.

North Carolina Human Relations Commission
N.C. Department of Administration

Write to:
1318 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, NC 27699-1318

Visit in person:
116 W. Jones Street
Raleigh, NC 27603

(919) 807-4420, or (866) 324-7474

Report discrimination online at

Legal Aid of North Carolina
Fair Housing Project

Write to:
P.O. Box 26087
Raleigh, NC 27611


Analysis of Impediments to Fair Housing Choice

Read The Updated Report & Action Plan Adopted by City Council

On July 16, 2019, Salisbury City Council adopted the 2019 Analysis of Impediments (AI) Report, following a previous report in 2014. The Analysis of Impediments (AI) to Fair Housing Choice is a process that recipients of grant funds from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), such as states, local governments, and public housing agencies, undertake as part of their obligation to affirmatively further fair housing (AFFH) under the Fair Housing Act. The report provides recommended goals and activities for the City to consider implementing over the next five years to reduce barriers to housing access and opportunity. Salisbury will continue to be a welcoming community where housing is available regardless of race, color, religion, sex, familiar status, national origin, or disability. Read the report in full below:

Full Report Executive Summary Fair Housing Action Plan

Housing and Urban Development

The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is a government agency that oversees home mortgage lending practices and is committed to creating equality in housing by enforcing the Fair Housing Act.

Learn More

Salisbury CDC

The Salisbury Community Development Commission (CDC) empowers individuals and families to become self-sufficient through partnerships with other organizations that share common goals and to develop quality, affordable housing in Salisbury.

Learn More

Salisbury Housing Authority

Housing Authority of the City of Salisbury is a Section 8 and Public Housing public housing agency in Salisbury, North Carolina.

(704) 636-1410


What to Know Before You Rent

Renting a home is a legal agreement with certain rights and responsibilities defined by law. The information below is designed to provide renters with general guidelines, it is not intended to provide legal advice.

What can I afford?

  • A general rule of thumb used by many property owners and managers is for the tenant’s monthly rent not to exceed 25-35% of his or her monthly income.
  • Consider the cost of utilities–gas, electricity, water and sewage.
  • If you are married and both you and your spouse work, the income of both husband and wife can be counted toward total income.
  • If you live with someone other than a spouse, each person may have to qualify separately.
  • Income may include wages and regular payments such as alimony, child support, social security, etc.
  • Proof of identification and income will be required, so be prepared to provide records showing your total income.
  • Your employment, credit, rental, and criminal record may be checked.

How do I find rental properties?

  • Ask for referrals from friends and co-workers. Drive through different neighbor-hoods and get to know the area (link to map).
  • Note any “For Rent” signs that are of interest.
  • Checking the classified ads is most effective after you have narrowed your search to specific areas.
  • Look in the Salisbury Post for the Real Estate Section on Saturdays.
  • Talk to real estate agencies.
  • Check in books that are usually available for free.
  • Visit apartment rental offices.
  • Search the Internet for local property managers.

How do I qualify?

  • There is no single standard used to qualify for renting. Procedures used to qualify applicants and lease property may differ.
  • Be sure to find out the specific standards and procedures followed by the owner or manager from whom you seek to rent.
  • Always remember to check with your landlord!

Inspection Checklist

  • Refrigerator
  • Stove/Oven
  • Microwave
  • Washer/Dryer Connections
  • Toilets
  • Faucets
  • Showers
  • Smoke and Carbon Monoxide detectors
  • Heating (Gas or Electric?)
  • Air Conditioning
  • Fireplace/Chimney flue
  • Doors and windows open and close
  • Working locks on all doors and windows
  • Look for broken glass in the windows
  • Look for leaks or signs of water damage
  • Look for signs of pests
  • Look for other damage to the walls, ceiling, rugs, floor (and furniture, if the apartment is furnished)

What else should I ask a prospective landlord?

  • Are appliances included?
  • Who takes care of the yard?
  • Who pays for water/trash/sewage?
  • What if something breaks?
  • Can I paint the walls or put up wallpaper?
  • What kind of parking is available?

Frequently Asked Questions

What information do I need to give to a landlord to be able to rent?
You must provide three things: proof of income, a government ID and your previous landlord information. Proof of income means a payment stub. Government ID means a driver’s license or ID card.
What do I need to consider when searching for a home?
You should consider the location, including access to public transportation, what is the area’s school district, are there nearby parks or shopping areas? Also consider if there is a neighborhood association and the levels of traffic in the area.
What about special needs?
You should check if the home allows for pets, children, wheelchairs and/or handicap access.

Download Brochure: What to Know Before You Rent

Tenants' Rights

As the tenant, you are entitled to certain rights and are also responsible for your rent. But please note that if repair work is needed, you must allow the owner to enter the property in order to have items fixed. The landlord should give notice prior to entering the property.

What if something breaks?

  • Emergency items include:
    • Gas leaks
    • Major water leaks
    • Electrical issues
    • Doors and windows that won’t lock
  • If not an emergency, notify landlord as soon as possible by phone and in writing.
    • If landlord does not respond, contact Salisbury’s Code Enforcement Division.
  • You must still pay your rent in order to avoid eviction.
    • The law does not allow a tenant to withhold rent payment while waiting for repairs to be made.
  • Talk to your landlord first if you foresee yourself not being able to make the monthly rent payment.
    • Be aware of additional costs. There may be a late fee. The fee cannot be more than 5% of your rent or the rent amount divided by 20.

What is the eviction process?

  • If you are delinquent in your rent payments or have damaged the property in some way, you may be at risk of being evicted.
  • The first step of the eviction process allows the landlord to give notice to the tenant to vacate the property.
    • If you choose not to vacate, the landlord must then file for Summary Ejectment (eviction) at the Rowan County Court House.
    • The tenant will then be summoned to Small Claims Court.
    • If the ruling of the judge or magistrate is in the landlord’s favor, the tenant will have ten days to appeal the decision.
    • After that, the landlord will obtain a Writ of Possession. This allows a sheriff’s deputy to come to the home after seven days to remove the tenant from the property.

Who is a tenant? Who is a landlord?

  • A tenant is someone who occupies a rental space and agrees to pay rent for a living space.
  • A landlord is a person who owns and rents a living space to a tenant OR is someone who manages the property for the owner.
  • These two people form a business relationship.

A sample letter to a landlord ...

Dear [Landlord’s Name(s)],

As tenant of the property located at [property address], I request that the following repairs be made to the property:

  • [Repair item #1]
  • [Repair item #2]
  • [Etc.]

  • Please bring the above mentioned items into compliance with the minimum housing standards of the City of Salisbury, North Carolina.

    I further request that you reply, in writing, to this letter within seven days of receiving it in the mail.

    Thank you for your assistance in this (these) matters. Please contact the City of Salisbury Code Enforcement Division at (704) 216-7559 for questions related to the minimum standards.

    Sincerely, [The Tenant’s Name]

What should I expect as a tenant?

  • A safe living environment with:
    • Smoke detectors (required by law)
    • Properly working systems (electrical, plumbing, gas.)
    • Carbon monoxide detectors (required by law if natural gas is used.)
    • No mold or mildew.
    • No pests (roaches, mice, termites, etc.)
  • Routine maintenance (unless specified otherwise in the lease)
    • Yard upkeep
    • A clean living space
    • Trash removed promptly and regularly
  • Good communication with the landlord
    • Get an emergency repair plan from the landlord.
    • Contact the landlord when your contact information changes.
    • You need the landlord’s mailing address.

Download Brochure: Tenants' Rights

Being a Good Tenant

Best practices for being a good tenant include treating the property as your own. Also, pay your rent first. Pay other bills later.

Good maintenance practices:

  • If something breaks, contact your landlord as soon as possible.
  • Give special attention to reporting water leaks.
  • Know the schedule for trash, recycling and yard debris.
  • Do not leave open food containers around the home which would attract pests or rodents.
  • Do not park on your front lawn.
  • Keep grass cut and bushes trimmed.
  • Do not store indoor furniture and appliances outside the home.
  • Keep sidewalks clear.
  • Replace smoke detector batteries and air filters as needed.
  • Trash cans not in front yard.

Rental insurance:

It is a good idea to have rental insurance. This will cover personal items that are lost or damaged in a fire or other event.

Community involvement:

  • Get involved with your Neighborhood Watch program.
  • Know your neighbors.
  • Be considerate of your neighbors.
  • Report any crime or suspicious activity promptly.

Having pets:

  • Have permission from landlord to have pets.
  • Clean up animal waste.
  • Treat your pets for fleas.
  • Manage your pet’s noise.
  • Do not let your pet run loose.

Characteristics of a good tenant:

  • Communicate well with your landlord.
  • Pay rent on time.
  • Be considerate of your neighbors.
  • Keep up your property.
  • Follow City ordinances that promote quality of life.
  • Consider safety a top priority.

Download Brochure: Being a Good Tenant   


The Role of a Landlord

Renting out a home is a legal agreement with certain rights and responsibilities defined by law. The information below is designed to provide landlords with general guidelines, it is not intended to provide legal advice. The relationship between a tenant and landlord should be one of good communication.

What makes a good landlord?

  • Provides a safe and clean place for renters.
  • Establishes good communication with the tenant.
  • Knows the minimum standards of living that are part of the City’s ordinances.
  • Keeps a healthy balance of regular property inspections and respects the privacy of tenant(s).
  • Reports any illegal activity to the police.
  • The landlord should give notice prior to entering the property in order to respect the privacy of the tenant(s).

Maintaining your property:

In order to ensure that your property does not fall below the minimum standards of living and also doesn’t become a money pit for repairs, it is important to do regular inspections of your property. This should be done, however, while respecting the privacy of the tenant(s).

You should give the tenant enough time prior to doing an inspection to allow them the opportunity to be present. The inspections should be at reasonable times of the day and week.

Money issues:

  • Always give receipts to your tenants and keep a record for yourself.
  • Have a reserve fund in place for emergency repairs or other unexpected occurrences.
  • Keep tenant’s deposit in a separate account.

Things to do in between tenants:

  • Check property for items that need to be repaired.
  • Ask yourself, “Does this property meet the minimum standards of living as established by the city’s ordinances?”
  • Inspect property for pest issues and consider extermination before moving a new renter into the dwelling.
  • Check all mechanical and electrical equipment to make sure it is in good working condition.
  • Call the utility companies to make sure there are no unpaid bills that may cause issues for a new tenant to have them put in their name.

Landlord safety tips:

  • Do not carry a lot of cash with you.
  • Do not go to the property by yourself.
  • Meet with prospective tenants in a mutual location such as your office.
  • Screen prospective tenants using background checks and credit checks.
  • Get references from past landlords for prospective tenants.

Download Brochure: The Role of a Landlord

Rental Property Registration

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