Accessory Dwelling Units, known as ADUs, are California’s answer to affordable housing. These tiny, self-contained living units have revolutionized living situations in desirable areas.

Building an ADU offers the homeowner a wide variety of options, as they can choose to rent both the ADU and main residence, rent only one property, or keep both properties for personal use. Either way, having an ADU is an investment that your greater Los Angeles area home will benefit from enormously.

Related: LA ADU Accelerator Program

About ADUs

ADUs present a versatile and unique form of housing that is often used to reap additional income. ADUs are reduced-sized housing units constructed on single-family residential lots. One ADU is allowed per lot, with each ADU regulated and fully equipped with necessary kitchen, bathroom, and living space. Legislation in the last several years has made it easier than ever for Californians to meet ADU requirements, which a professional contractor can help you navigate for a successful and streamlined ADU project.

adu studio

Though each ADU presents a smaller living space than the main residence, there are several different types of ADU structures. ADUs can be attached to the main residence but must contain a separate entrance. They can also be converted out of the attic, basement, or garage space.

ADUs can additionally be entirely stand-alone structures, either converted from existing infrastructure or constructed from the ground up. Because ADUs can be rented independently from the main property, they offer a variety of opportunities for the homeowner.

Related: What Is An ADU

Meeting Demands

ADUs answer the need for affordable housing amid significant housing shortages in California. They also offer an affordable solution for escalating rent. ADUs fulfill the dual advantage of serving as an additional income source for homeowners and low-cost housing opportunities for renters in need. ADUs are particularly advantageous for new families looking to start their careers in areas where they cannot currently afford the rent for a full-sized home. ADU rentals also appeal to retired couples who no longer need full-sized living spaces but wish to reside in their neighborhoods.

ADUs offer affordable living without overcrowding areas, creating manageable density in place of newly constructed apartment space. They also can offer rent control eligibility if homeowners move into their ADU and rent out their main residence. Many cities allow for ADUs to be listed on room and home renting websites, such as Airbnb, to offer easy short-term renting access. Overall, ADU rentals offer a unique and advantageous solution to the affordable housing crisis that affects many California residents.

Reasons to Rent

Though ADUs cannot be sold independently from the main property, they can be rented. Therefore, the homeowner can either rent the ADU and live in the main property, live in the ADU and rent the main property, or rent both the ADU and main property separately. ADU rentals create flexible solutions that can adapt to the homeowner’s changing needs, as well as additional income opportunities.

Potential renter income and increased housing flexibility are among the top reasons why homeowners wish to undertake an ADU venture. Having two livable units on the property creates many possibilities for additional income. The homeowner can also decide to use the ADU for short-term rentals and keep the space available during specific times for guests, or use the ADU for long-term renting opportunities. ADU rentals are fortunately adaptable based on changing homeowner needs.

Related: How Can ADU Benefit Your Property?

adu flat

Using Your ADU

While many wish to rent their ADUs, the unit can also be used for personal enjoyment. Some homeowners prefer to keep the additional living space available for guest lodgings to house family and friends.

At the moment, ADUs offer invaluable space for quarantine lodging and adjacent yet separate living. The great thing about ADUs is that they can meet shifting needs, as once an ADU is constructed, it can be used for a multitude of purposes.

Many use their ADU space to meet the needs of the homeowner. At-home offices are popular ADU options, as are media or family rooms. The ADU space can be used for an art studio, a yoga studio, a photography room, a home gym, or a children’s playroom. The ADU space can also be used as a rental unit until the cost of the project is paid off, and then converted into any living space that the homeowner desires.

ADU Possibilities

Deciding whether or not to rent the ADU out or use it as personal space is entirely up to the homeowner. Some wish to be on-site landlords living in the ADU while renting out the main house, while others choose to live in the ADU if they travel frequently and don’t need the space of the main property. Renting out ADUs long-term creates stable and affordable living opportunities for renters, while short-term rentals offer flexibility for the homeowner. Factors that contribute to navigating your options include financial needs and desired living accommodations.

ADUs are excellent options for flexible living, as the homeowner can alternate their living between the ADU and main residence depending on renting opportunities and financial needs, as well as changing lifestyles. ADUs add significant value to the property, raising property value as well as additional income opportunities. If you’re interested in exploring an ADU project, be sure to team up with a professional contractor so that you can meet all legal requirements and regulations.

Why Choose Us?

At California Foundation Works, it’s our mission to keep Southern California homeowners safe one house at a time.

We search for innovative and affordable ways to help you, the homeowner, get the most out of your property. ADUs offer a revolutionary way to expand your living space while opening up a world of opportunities. From the initial consultation to obtaining necessary permits to putting on the final touches, we’ll guide you through the entirety of your ADU project and help you cut costs along the way. Ready to get started?

Related: Side Income ADU

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