According to a recent survey, over 1.4 million U.S. residences now have an accessory dwelling unit (ADU). An ADU is a great choice if you want extra living space but don’t want to deal with the disruption of a large remodel.
These one-of-a-kind improvements add a lot of value to a home and have many practical applications. With so many wonderful advantages, it’s easy to see why ADUs are becoming increasingly popular.
Do you have second thoughts about installing an ADU on your property? Keep reading to find out what an ADU is and seven fantastic arguments in favor of constructing one.
What Is an Accessory Dwelling Unit?
A separate structure on a property that functions as an additional living quarter and has its own kitchen, bathroom, entrance, and sleeping area is known as an auxiliary dwelling unit (ADU).
The ADU may be joined to either your primary residence or garage. You might even construct it separately, as a standalone structure in your yard. The energy and water for this building will come from the same sources as your primary residence.
Depending on the size of your lot, you may pick and choose from a number of various ADU layouts. Converting a garage into an ADU is one option, as is building one over a workshop. You also have the option of creating an ADU within your main house.
The ADU cannot be subdivided into smaller units under any circumstances. However, you may utilize it to your advantage by renting it out to others.
Brief History and Evolution of ADUs
A Brief Overview of the Development of Attached Dwelling Units Attached dwelling units have a long and storied history. The first names for these structures were granny flats, in-law suites, and backyard cottages. ADUs have traditionally served as inexpensive accommodation for families or as a place for extended family members to live together. As time has passed, ADUs have been more widely accepted as a viable solution to housing shortages, a driver of sustainable development, and a source of supplementary revenue.
Purpose and Benefits of ADUs
What they are and why they’re popular Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) have become more popular due to the many advantages they provide to property owners, renters, communities, and the natural world. The versatility of ADUs allows homeowners to meet a variety of housing needs, including those of extended family members, tenants, and domestic help. In addition to easing the burden on housing markets, fostering local variety, and boosting community involvement, ADUs can also be used as income properties.
The Rise in ADUs and Their Future Prospects
Many cities and suburbs have been looking to accessory dwelling units (ADUs) as a solution to their housing shortages in recent years. Seeing the potential of ADUs, governments and municipalities have made measures to ease rules and expedite the approval process. ADUs have become increasingly popular as a consequence, with many homeowners seeing them as a way to increase their property’s worth and provide themselves with more financial stability.
This book will offer you with a thorough overview of ADUs, whether you’re interested in the concept of installing one in your backyard, wondering what legal and regulatory concerns surround these units, or just looking at alternative housing possibilities. Let’s explore the potential of ADUs (accessory dwelling units) together.
To learn more about ADUs and the factors that go into their design, building, financing, and legality, stay tuned for the next parts!
What Are the Benefits of Adding an ADU to Your Property?
Adding an accessory dwelling unit is a wise investment that will pay dividends in many ways. The unit’s primary benefits are:
1. Earning Passive Income:
Adding an accessory dwelling unit (ADU) is a fantastic method to generate additional income on a passive basis. Tenants searching for cheap accommodation in your neighborhood would be a good fit for your rental property. Rental ADUs are fully furnished and equipped for self-sufficiency.
Renting out the ADU to tourists is another way to generate short-term income from the structure. You may, for instance, rent it out as a vacation rental if you happen to reside in a popular tourist destination.
2. Increased Value of Property:
The addition of an ADU can increase the market value of your home. There is evidence to suggest that installing one of these can add 25% to 34% to the value of your property. The ADU’s value growth will be determined by its layout and building quality.
An accessory dwelling unit (ADU) can increase your home’s resale value by providing additional living space. The result may be a boost in your home’s market value.
It may also facilitate the process of finding and keeping renters.
3. There’s More Room for Your Visitors:
If you have a tiny house, an ADU can be a lifesaver. When guests come to visit, you may put them up in the apartment. This manner, they may stay at your place without invading your privacy or taking over your primary living quarters.
Having an ADU on your property provides you and your young children with more seclusion and safety. Guests won’t need to know that you’re concentrating on child care since you won’t be.
4. Households Containing Multiple Generations:
ADUs are especially convenient for families with many generations living under one roof. An accessory dwelling unit (ADU) is a great way to give your elderly parents or grown children some space of their own while yet keeping them close to the family.
Each of these apartments is totally self-contained. Because of these qualities, an ADU is an excellent choice for those who wish to maintain close ties with their families while also providing them with individual quarters.
With an accessory dwelling unit (ADU), you may have enough space for everyone without compromising on the safety of your family.
5. A Devoted Office Area:
A secondary dwelling unit (SDU) can serve as an ideal workplace for a telecommuter. You may get your work done in peace and quiet in your very own ADU. If you operate a small business or are self-employed, you can utilize the unit to do business as well.
The accessory dwelling unit is ideal for fitness-related activities like hosting yoga lessons. The ADU is suitable for therapeutic sessions and may house your clients.
Your customers will appreciate the peace and quiet that the unit’s isolation affords them.
Sixth, ADUs offer a greener alternative to single-family dwellings. They are more efficient in their use of resources and in their disposal of trash. This is because accessory dwelling units are often more compact than conventional houses.
Because of the small footprint of an ADU, valuable real estate may be preserved. Consult with a design and build firm to create a floor plan for your ADU that makes efficient use of space yet still includes all the amenities you need.
Use of eco-friendly materials and methods of construction should be a top priority while constructing an ADU. Your electricity bills and environmental impact will go down thanks to these additions.
7. Affordable Housing:
Adding an accessory dwelling unit (ADU) to your property is a fantastic method of providing low-cost housing and responding to local need.
Adding ADUs can provide people with more housing alternatives and make it easier for them to buy their own houses in areas where the demand is strong.
Your adult children will have a low-cost housing alternative in the ADUs. As they get ready to move out on their own or attend university, the youngsters can use the ADU as a temporary home.
The ADU will serve as a stepping stone toward financial independence and self-sufficiency as they prepare for life on their own.
WHAT ARE THE PERMITS REQUIRED FOR BUILDING AN ADU?
There is a wide variety of ADU types, sizes, and levels of regulation among regions. You may always consult the city’s planning office for advice if you’re feeling overwhelmed. The minimum distance between an accessory housing unit and the primary residence mandated by some municipalities is four feet.
The minimum required setback in the state of California is 3 feet. However, if you already own a garage and want to convert it into your ADU, you can apply for a dwelling permit to do so.
Getting an accessory dwelling unit (ADU) permit is the first step in building an ADU on your property. The license will specify the maximum allowed height, permitted features, and other limitations of the accessory dwelling unit. You should be aware of these limits before commencing the project so that it doesn’t get rejected. Learning the laws in your area is the first step in getting started on your project.
For All Other Licenses
The location and purpose of your accessory dwelling unit (ADU) or senior flat will determine which permits you’ll require. Curious about the steps involved in obtaining an accessory dwelling unit license? Here are some things to think about:
Obtaining a site permit is the next stage in building an accessory dwelling unit. These licenses are necessary in many communities and states before beginning construction. Before building anything in an unfamiliar region, it is essential to familiarize oneself with these guidelines. Get in touch with the city’s building department for further details before you get started. Every home construction job should get a zoning permission before beginning construction.c
2. Site-specific situations:
If you’ve ever considered adding an accessory dwelling unit to your home, there are a few details you should be aware of. You should start by thinking about what makes your area special. If it is inclined, for instance, it must be supported or leveled below. Installing an ADU for an elderly person might be a difficulty if they have mobility issues and you need to consider how they will access the room.
3. Non-conforming ADUs:
In California, an accessory dwelling unit (ADU) cannot be built without first obtaining a building permission. If you’re thinking of adding an accessory dwelling unit to your home, you should be aware of the rules that govern such projects, such as obtaining the necessary permissions to build a small, detached housing with a maximum floor area of 800 square feet and a maximum height of 16 feet. Building permits cannot be rejected for accessory dwelling units that do not exceed 750 square feet in size and are no taller than 16 feet. An ADU can be as tall as the existing home or garage if it is built within it.
4. Applications for address allocation:
Building an accessory dwelling unit also needs approval. The restrictions, including those on the ADU’s height and amenities, will be spelled out in the permit. If you don’t follow the rules set forth by your local government, you risk having your building permit revoked. In addition, you’ll need a home equity loan or preapproval for a loan from your lender before you can begin construction.
Leverage the Benefits of Accessory Dwelling Units
Some of the advantages of ADUs include the following. An ADU is a fantastic choice if you want to add a second dwelling to your property for either financial or practical reasons.
Now that you are aware of the advantages of ADUs, you can begin planning for the construction of one on your property. Dreamprint Home Remodeling offers a wide variety of ADU plans to guarantee that you choose one that fits your needs.
Frequently Asked Questions
Permit fees for accessory dwelling units are determined by your local government (city or county), within the bounds of statewide regulations. The cost of obtaining the necessary licenses in your location may be estimated by the ADU designer.
Talking to general contractors is a good idea when your designer first submits designs to the city because the permitting process might take a long time. They will then provide you with a set of blueprints to show to potential GCs. Without the blueprints, the GCs can’t provide a fair bid. You should be able to get started as soon as you have your permits if you have a good concept of which general contractor you want to work with.
Remember that GCs are in high demand at the moment, so many of the desirable ones may already be reserved. That’s why you need to book time with them immediately.
The most effective strategy is to ask around for recommendations of local GCs who have worked on ADU projects before.
The typical time frame from first consulting with a designer to moving into your finished ADU is between 12 and 18 months. The time schedule will vary based on the accessibility of local tradesmen and the efficiency of the material supply chain.
Putting up a foundation, running electrical wires, and installing cabinetry all require the expertise of different people. Because each stage must pass a city inspection, they have a strict order in which to do their tasks. The construction schedule will thus rely heavily on these employees.
The laws in your jurisdiction will determine this. Cities in Oregon can’t mandate garages for ADUs. Parking spaces are optional for ADUs in California if they are located within half a mile of a bus stop or train station. The parking rules in other states may be different depending on the population density of the city.
Solar accessory dwelling unit (ADU) laws differ by state. Unless the ADU is a garage conversion or the site is too shady for solar panels, all newly constructed ADUs in California must contain solar panels.