What is an Accessory Dwelling Unit?

Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) are known by many names: granny flats, in-law units, backyard  cottages, secondary units and more. No matter what you call them, ADUs are an innovative, affordable, effective option for adding much-needed housing in California.

What are the benefits of ADUs?
  • ADUs are an affordable type of home to construct in California because they do not require paying for land, major new infrastructure, structured parking, or elevators.
  • ADUs can provide a source of income for homeowners.
  • ADUs are built with cost-effective wood frame construction, which is significantly less costly than homes in new multifamily infill buildings.
  • ADUs allow extended families to be near one another while maintaining privacy.
  • ADUs can provide as much living space as many newly-built apartments and condominiums, and they’re suited well for couples, small families, friends, young people, and seniors.
  • ADUs give homeowners the flexibility to share independent living areas with family members and others, allowing seniors to age in place as they require more care.

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