accessory dwelling units

Accessory dwelling units (ADUs) in the United States are growing in popularity. As housing becomes more scarce and expensive, people are looking for alternatives to get more value from their current homes, earn extra income, and find a place to live.

In addition, many local areas are now making it easier to build these units. Zoning restrictions are getting more lax, allowing homeowners to build smaller detached units on their property without regulatory problems.

If you’re asking yourself what exactly an ADU is and how it can benefit you, this guide will help. Keep reading to learn all you need to know about ADUs.

What Is an Accessory Dwelling Unit?

An accessory dwelling unit is a secondary unit attached to a primary residence. They are accessory units because they don’t fit the mold of traditional housing units. They are often smaller, have different form factors, and have different designs.

ADU additions can come in many forms:

  • Garage conversion
  • Detached unit
  • Basement conversion
  • Attic conversion
  • New home addition

Despite being smaller, these units normally have almost everything for someone to live. Property owners use them as in-law suites, guest homes, and short-term rental units.

Why Building an ADU Is Worth It

Now that you know what an ADU is, the question becomes, will it be worth building? Let’s look at why you should consider making the investment.

Increased Property Value

One of the best ways to add value to a home is to make an addition to it. That’s true whether you’re making a small home improvement or adding an entire section to your home.

The same applies to an accessory dwelling unit. The added square footage will be included in your home value during a home assessment. Many property owners add far more value to your home than they spent on an ADU and consider it well worth the money.

In addition, these units add value in a way other home additions can’t. They offer a unique space not offered in regular homes that the new owner can use for an office, guest home, and whatever other purpose. Buyers may be willing to offer more for your home because of this.

Private Accommodations

Many homeowners may not enjoy having guests over to visit because of the lack of space. It isn’t that you don’t like hosting your friends and family, but that you need private space during that time. Everyone shares the same living space, meaning it can get cramped after so long.

An ADU solves that problem. This space is usually isolated from the main living space, whether entirely detached from the primary residence or a separate space in the basement or attic. As a result, you and your guests can have your privacy when they are over, and everyone can still enjoy each other’s company.

On top of that, guests aren’t cramped in a small bedroom during their stay. They get an entire living suite that has everything they need.

Extra Income

With the increase in travelers using Airbnb and other short-term rental services, more opportunities have opened for homeowners who want to make extra income. It can start with renting an extra room in your home. However, you may want to make more money, improve your privacy, and charge more for short-term rentals.

An ADU is a great way to do this. You can leave your unit off the market if you have friends or family over to visit. But if your ADU isn’t in use, renting it on short-term rental websites is a great way to earn extra income.

This way, you won’t only make extra money because of increased property value. You’ll also bring in steady yearly income on top of your property’s appreciation.

Build a Workspace

You don’t have to stick to a living space for your ADU. With the increase in work-from-home jobs, many homeowners find themselves working in less-than-ideal conditions inside their homes. A home addition can offer the space a remote worker needs for a private area to concentrate.

You can build an ADU on your property strictly as a home office. A private space will allow you to avoid distractions in the main residence if other people are home and give you a private space to take meetings.

The great thing is that you don’t need to dedicate it solely to work activities. If you or someone in your family has hobbies and other interests, you can dedicate space in your ADU for those activities. You won’t have extra items cluttering your home and can still work on your passions.

Generational Living

Many people want to stay close to their family. Whether it’s older children staying in touch with their parents or small kids needing a bit of extra space as they get older, it’s becoming more common for multiple generations to live together.

But this can create a crowded living space. You lack privacy and may see a conflict between the people living together.

An ADU allows for easier generational living. For instance, if you have in-laws who are getting older that you need to care for, you can use your extra space to provide a living area. Doing this gives everyone privacy and still allows you to be close to care for them when necessary.

Invest in Accessory Dwelling Units

Accessory dwelling units are one of the best home improvement projects for your home if you have the space and money to invest in the project. They not only give your family a great location to stay away from the main home but also allow you to use it as extra income if you don’t mind renting to travelers. Look more into accessory dwelling unit ideas to determine if they are a good choice for your home.

If you do think an ADU is right for you, you’ll need to find a reliable ADU contractor to help you plan and build your new addition. From ADU designs to construction, our experts at Cliff’s Construction can help you through the entire process. Contact us to speak to a professional who can help.