Accessory Dwelling Units to the rescue

When it comes to navigating the different chapters of life, most of us have taken on home projects for lifestyle, financial or environmental reasons.

The return of ADUs in 2020

Remember the before and after transformations? Interior remodeling, building a garage, extending a patio, adding a second floor or storage shed, just to name a few. 

Given the surge in home office and schooling arrangements during the COVID pandemic, Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) have made a comeback. An ADU is a second dwelling on the same property as the regular single-family house. They have been around for decades and among other names, were fondly referred to as granny flats or in-law units. Yes!…remember those? 

Credit: Studio Patron

ADUs provide an alternative that can help with space, functionality, and privacy challenges. They can be attached to the house (such as a garage or basement) or be freestanding (for instance a backyard cottage or studio).

Benefits and Uses

The most obvious benefit of an ADU is a financial one. An additional dwelling can bring in rental income and having a rental property in the backyard makes management and maintenance a lot easier. Another benefit is that they raise the resale value of the house because the ADU belongs to the same property as the primary home.

ADUs can serve as alternative housing for boomerang children or aging family members. The units can provide the safety, accessibility, and the privacy necessary in these situations. Luckily, to serve our changing lifestyles and choices, ADUs come in many sizes, price points and designs.

Accessory Dwelling Unit

If you have looked into ADUs, no doubt you have come across the many reasons why people have opted for them – such as a home office, studio for hobbies, workshop for the kids or a guest house. Ever wanted that ‘she shed’ or home gym? Well this could be an option for you! Additionally, you get to add your personal touch with the interior décor, colors, exterior lighting and landscaping to make it a gem on your property.

Do your research

To make the design and selection process more streamlined, there many companies that showcase prefabricated ADUs. Do your research, take the time to speak to the professionals and read the reviews to understand what may or may not work for your needs and priorities. On a creative note, you will come across many designs that are quite unique and exquisite! 

Accessory Dwelling Unit
Credit: Studio Padron

However, a word of advice. It is vital to contact the local authorities before any work on the ADU begins. For instance, look into local government regulations, HOA requirements, zoning criteria and building permits. Be thorough in your research and planning, so you don’t encounter any significant setbacks on this journey.

So, if you are looking into a real estate investment or a new family home, and you have the space for it – consider an ADU for your future needs. It can be customized to meet your specific taste and purpose. Done right, it can positively impact the resale value of your property and attract a wider range of potential buyers. It is certainly an exciting solution to keep in mind as your family, home and lifestyle changes pave the way forward.