Often referred to, in the building industry, as a detached living areas within a residential property, additional dwelling units (ADU), as better known as granny flats. These structures earned their name from the fact that it is a popular way for families to accommodate aging parents. Also called casitas, in-law apartment or ohana (in Hawaii), granny flats are self-contained units where its occupant can live comfortably, independent of the main house. It includes the same amenities such as a kitchen and a bathroom. In most cases, the design of granny flats falls into the tiny house category to maximize space and for easier maintenance.
If your property has enough area to accommodate an ADU, you may want to consider building a granny flat. Having an extra living space on your grounds will give you the following benefits.
1. Additional Living Space
The most obvious benefit of building a granny flat on your property is that it gives you an extra living space. Apart from being able to live close and care for aging members of your family, the ADU can also accommodate a young adult member of the family. The young adult may benefit from the privacy the living space as it will allow focus on his or her studies. ADUs afford their occupants privacy while giving you the assurance and comfort in the knowledge that your loved ones are just close by. The granny flat can also accommodate in-house nannies, caregivers or extended relatives.
2. Extra Income
You can rent out the granny flat to generate additional revenue. You can use the extra cash to help you pay your mortgage or take care of the utility bills. Renting out the flat will help you spread out your income risk with another source of revenue. This is of course, dependent on municipal statutes, zoning laws, neighborhood requisites and other regulations. In most cases, however, there are ways to circumvent all these regulations. You can consult a licensed building contractor who will likely be well versed in such matters.
3. Boost Your Property’s Value
Building a granny flat on your property will no doubt increase its market value. Such will be an advantage for large families who may view the extra living space as a means to train their teenagers to live independently. Other may also see it as a means to generate additional income by renting it out. In this regard, real estate agents will be able to tell you how much value the ADU can add to your property.
It should be noted that ADUs may not necessarily be a detached structure on your grounds. Apart from a detached unit, the ADU may come in the form of the following:
- In-home granny flat: This will be the simplest construction approach to a granny flat as the alterations are done within the existing home. The only change would likely be the entrance to the granny flat and perhaps the addition of a kitchen and a bathroom.
- Home extension ADU: Another cost-effective way to add a granny flat is to construct an extension room to the house. Like the previous type of ADU, the home extension option may help you circumvent any building and construction regulations.