What is an ADU?
The City of Los Angeles describes an ADU as:
An Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) is a residential unit that can be added to a lot with an existing single family home. ADUs can be detached (a separate building in a backyard), attached to or part of the primary residence, or a garage conversion. ADUs are independent rental units that have their own kitchens, bathrooms, living areas, and entrances.
Why build an ADU?
ADUs can provide additional space for caregivers, grown children, elderly parents, or renters. Because ADUs are rental units, they produce additional household income. “Empty nesters” can stay in their neighborhoods by moving into a smaller ADU and renting their larger existing home to pay the mortgage. An ADU can be built to house a relative or caregiver. There are many reasons for building an ADU on your lot.
New State Law:
The new state law (AB 2299, effective January 2017) applies to LA and makes it easier to build an ADU on a single family lot. The state law encourages the construction of accessory units because the City needs more housing.
As with any project, strict building codes apply to the construction of ADU's within Los Angeles and the surrounding cities. Every city can adopt their own variations of the code that will apply to ADU's in their neighborhoods, but since it is a State law, all California cities are required to allow ADU's if the property meets the basic requirements to conform with zoning regulations.
Additional information about ADU's will be addressed in a follow-up post. If you would like more information about adding an ADU to your property please contact S K Architects.