An Additional Dwelling Unit (ADU) can provide needed support for loved ones and significant value to the property. Whether as a space for retired relatives, a comfortable sanctuary for a loved one with special needs, or just a way to conserve land while adding a self-sufficient living area, an ADU offers many advantages. It can be overwhelming to handle all the different aspects involved in adding an ADU to your home, though, considering that you not only have to meet the specifications for the building but take into account other factors that will make your new structure compliant with local standards.
Is an ADU right for you?
You need to consider first whether you have enough room on your property for a self-contained living space. An ADU, or granny flat, may be simply a housing unit attached to your home, an apartment over the garage, or a standalone cottage on your property. While an ADU is generally much smaller than a regular home, there needs to be enough room so all the tenants’ needs can be met. You may need to make accommodations to ensure there is full use of local utilities. Parking is a major consideration, and you may need to make major modifications for everyone to have a parking space.
State and local standards are becoming more favorable to ADUs, and recent legislation signed by Governor Newsom attempts to allow more people to take advantage of this kind of construction. There is a myriad of rules governing building and population density, and the new rules are meant to deal with California’s housing shortage by limiting the local jurisdiction’s ability to block new building projects that increase the number of people in a smaller area.
How an ADU specialist can help
When handling a major home improvement project, home renovation contractors are performing a kind of balancing act. They need to choose the best materials and skilled workers, and in the case of a granny flat, they need to find the best way to make use of the existing space so they can create an entirely new living space that everyone will be able to enjoy. This requires an extra level of skill and expertise, and at the same time, your home renovation team will need to work out easements and handle utilities and permits.
Even if the conditions were fine for a single home, there might be other factors that your ADU contractors will need to consider regarding the conditions on your property, such as drainage and privacy issues. There are additional rules to follow, such as the California Green Buildings Standard Code and Title 24 for energy. Overall, it would be difficult to learn all at once.
Choosing an ADU expert
When choosing among San Diego Home Remodelers, you should choose someone who is familiar with the area and who has experience with this kind of construction. Ask to see a portfolio, so you know what kind of work the company has already done. Look at their customer reviews, and if you can, find out if people are satisfied with the projects they have already completed. This is a serious investment, and you won’t know right away how well it is going to work out.
When you are checking out the references of potential builders, make sure to note whether they are responsive to their customers. Building an Additional Dwelling Unit is a lot like building a house, and it will need to meet all the legal specifications while also providing comfort and relaxation to the tenants. There are going to be issues that come up during construction, even if you just want to see how things are going, and you don’t want someone who is not interested in your input.
Being able to take direction is the most important quality for your builder to have. This is your home remodel project, your dream, and they are helping you to realize it. Before you get started, make sure their license and insurance are current, as this will take a major source of stress out of the project. Most importantly, find someone who you feel comfortable with to build your new granny flat.