Lease to Locals Wood River Valley
Homeowner Intake Packet
Updated 9/22/2023

Below is a detailed guide outlining the steps you will have to follow to receive an incentive through the Lease to Locals program. Full program guidelines can be found here.
1) Property Owner Requirements:
  • The property must be located within the North Wood River Valley defined as the city limits of Ketchum, Sun Valley, and Ketchum’s Area of City Impact. There are some exclusions including: Ketchum Light Industrial District and (from November 15th to April 15th) any avalanche zone.
  • The property must not already be a long-term rental. This is defined as having had full-time tenants in the past 12 months, even if they were on a month-to-month lease.
  • There is a rent cap (based on unit size) and the property can not be rented to immediate family members.
  • Leases can be either seasonally (5+ months) or long-term (12+ months) and are subject to all contingencies listed below
2) Incentive Amounts:
The program provides one-time incentives based on the number of Qualified Tenants placed in the property. Incentive amounts for seasonal leases will be $2,000 per Qualified Tenant, while incentives for long-term leases will be $4,500 per Qualified Tenant. The maximum grant amount is $18,000.
3) Securing Qualified Tenants:
You are responsible for securing your own tenants or you can hire a property manager to help you with sourcing and screening tenants. If you’d like, you can post your property for free on (just ask us for instructions). We have a database of local employees seeking housing and by posting on our site we automatically alert folks in our database that match your property criteria.
You may also want to post your listing on the Idaho Mountain Express, or one of the local Facebook Groups (Wood River Buy Sell Trade, Wood River Rentals). Here is some language you can use on your listing:
This property is part of the Wood River Valley Lease to Locals program, aimed at unlocking existing new rentals for local employees. To qualify for this property there are income and local employment requirements.
4) Rent Cap:
To control for affordability, there is a rental cap that the Property Owner can charger per Housing Unit as follows:
Studio or 1 bedroom $1,500/month
2 bedrooms $2,400/month
3 bedrooms $3,000/month
4 bedrooms $4,000/month
5) Tenant and Household Eligibility:
Once you have found tenants you are ready to move forward with, make sure your tenants are a Qualified Household. Your incentive is based on the number of Qualifying Tenants.
Qualified Household: A Qualified Household is any group of individuals living together in one home as their primary residence, where at least half of the adults are Qualified Tenants. A Qualified Household’s income is based on the average gross annual income for the household, which cannot exceed $86,098. Children count cumulatively as one additional household member for income purposes.
  • Example 1: Two adults with two children earning $170,000 gross annual income = qualified household ($170,000 / 3 household members = $56.6k average gross annual income)
  • Example 2: One adult earning $90,000 gross annual income = not qualified household (over income cap)
Qualified Tenant: A Qualified Tenant is an adult who is not of blood relation to the Property Owner and who meets at least one of the following criteria:
  • Gross annual income cannot exceed $86,098 AND employed at least 30 hours per week (1,500 hours per year) at an employment site within Blaine County. Children count cumulatively as one additional Qualified Tenant.
  • Meet one of the following exemptions:
    • Exception to the 1,500 hours per year requirements can be made for education providers.
    • A person unable to work or who does not have a work history due to qualifying for disability as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
    • A full-time, single parent or guardian of a child under the age of 4
    • A full-time, informal caregiver of a child or an adult with a disability if either caregiver or care-recipient lived in Blaine County for at least the five previous continuous years. A caregiver is defined as a person who resides with a person(s) with disabilities who is: essential to the care and well being of the person(s); not obligated to support the person(s) with the disabilities; and would not be living in the unit except to provide the necessary supportive services.
6) Tenant Application:
Before you sign a lease with your tenants, we will verify their employment to ensure they are a Qualified Household and verify the number of Qualified Tenants. We do this by having all adult members of the household fill out the Lease to Locals Tenant Application. We will review each Tenant Application and get back to them with any missing documentation. To have us complete his step, send each adult tenant’s contact information (name, email, phone). Note this step can take 1-2 business days, depending on how responsive your tenants are.
7) Lease
Once you’ve signed a lease with a Qualified Household, the next step will be for us to send you a Property Owner & Lease Summary Form where you can upload a copy of your signed lease (make sure it is signed and dated by both you and the tenants).
8) Homeowner Application:
Once Placemate has reviewed your lease, we will send you a Property Owner Application requesting the following:
  • Verification of Terms & Conditions (you initial)
  • Property Details & Grant Amount (you review and sign)
  • Invoice (we fill this out)
  • W9 Form (you fill out – please make sure you enter your SSN or EIN)
7) Move-in Confirmation:
After we have received your completed Property Owner Application, our final step is to verify that your tenants have moved in (via text, phone, or email). If the lease has not yet started, we will contact tenants on the first day of the lease.
8) Application Submission:
Once we have received confirmation that your tenants have moved in, we will submit your application packet to The City of Ketchum for review and approval.
  1. The City will issue the first half of the grant payment to the Property Owner within thirty (30) days of receiving a completed application packet.
  2. The City will issue the second half of the grant payment to the Property Owner within thirty (30) days of the end of the lease.
  3. Payments shall be issued to the Property Owner, as their legal name(s) appear on recorded property ownership documents.
8) Mid-Point Checkin (for long-term leases only):
For 12 month+ leases only, at the mid-term point of the lease, Placemate will check in with both the tenants and Property Owner to ensure tenants are still in place. Review contingencies below for explanation of when the second payment may be withheld.
9) Year-End Checkin:
At the end of the lease, Placemate will check in with both the tenants and owner and submit a request for the second half of the incentive payment. Review contingencies below for explanation of when the second payment may be withheld.
10) Contingencies:
a) Owner Must Rent the Home for use as Primary Residence. The Qualified Tenant may use the Home only for residential purposes and any activities related to residential use that are permitted by local zoning law, except for short-term rental. Additional criteria are in Program Policies. 
b) Change of Ownership: If the Housing Unit is sold during the lease period, the lease remains intact, and the new owner receives the second half of the incentive if they remain qualified. An executed agreement between the buyer and seller must describe new Property Owner’s obligations under this program, plus the following:
  • Abide by the lease terms, or
  • If the new owner desires to pursue breaking the lease, they must provide 30-day notice to the Qualified Household and Placemate and pay the Qualified Household the amount equal to monthly rent times the number of remaining months, rounded up. In this case, Placemate would work to place the tenants into another property.
b) Failure to Comply with Lease: If the Property Owner plans to evict a tenant, Property Owner must notify Placemate and Tenant 30 days in advance and work with Tenant to see if an alternative agreement can be reached. Placemate may require owner to promptly and adequately respond to mediation services. This applies unless a member of the Qualified Household
  • is found by Owner or staff to be producing a controlled substance on the property (must provide at least a three (3) day eviction notice);
  • is convicted of assaulting or threatening the Owner, their family, employees, or other tenants (must provide at least a three (3) day eviction notice). If domestic violence is suspected, the Owner must respect the victim’s requests and refer them to the Advocates (24/7 Helpline 208.788.4191).
If the Property Owner does not meet lease agreements at the six-month mark because of an eviction or move-out, Placemate will work with Property Owners to rectify the situation. If an agreement cannot be reached, the Property Owner will be disqualified from receiving the second installment of the grant disbursements but will not be required to pay back the first installment of the grant.
c) Property Condition: If the Housing Unit is deemed in violation of Idaho law or regulations the grant payment(s) may be withheld.
d) The term “Capital Improvements” means any improvements that 
(i) exceed more than a single eight-hour day; 
(ii) requires packing, moving, or storing belongings; 
(iii) continued occupancy constitutes a danger to the Qualified Tenant’s health or safety and/or the nature of the improvement creates an undue burden or unnecessary hardship; or 
(iv) the Qualified Tenant does not have access to functional kitchen or bathroom facilities.
In addition, Capital Improvements include any improvements that change the footprint, square-footage, or height of the house. No improvements may be made to the Home that would affect its bedroom configuration. The Owner will not make any Capital Improvements to the Home without the prior written consent of the City, which consent may be withheld in the City’s sole and absolute discretion or may include notice and relocation assistance requirements.  
The Owner may make other improvements to the Home without the consent of the City as long as such improvements (i) do not meet the criteria, (ii) are constructed in a professional manner, (iii) reasonable efforts are made to comply with Qualified Tenant’s scheduling requirements, and (iv) comply with all applicable laws and regulations.  This does not apply in the event the Home is damaged or destroyed following a fire or other casualty.
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