Rural Communities Housing Development Corporation (RCHDC) was officially incorporated as a charitable non-profit corporation in November 1975. The corporation was initially developed and staffed by North Coast Opportunities (NCO) the local community action agency. NCO recognized the need for housing for low-income persons, as well as the need for a single purpose housing development corporation to address the problem.

In January 1983, RCHDC became financially and administratively independent of NCO.  Initially, RCHDC was involved in developing housing projects involving low-income families, and low income elderly.  It has since expanded into operating a self-help housing program serving Lake, Mendocino, and Humboldt Counties.