Why You Should Build Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) [Guide]

November 4, 2021 | Andray Shcherban

Multigenerational living arrangements have become more prevalent in recent years. Increasingly, people want to live in close proximity to their families, so it’s no surprise that homeowners and potential buyers want homes with floor plans that include extra space for their adult children, aging parents, and other loved ones.

Building an accessory dwelling unit (ADU) is the ideal way to add a separate living space to your property. It maximizes privacy, convenience, and flexibility. In this article, we’ll explore why building an ADU is such a great investment in your family and home and answer all your most pressing ADU-related questions!

What is an ADU?

An ADU, which stands for accessory dwelling unit, is a separate, apartment-like living space attached to a single-family home. They’re also often referred to as mother-in-law suites, multigenerational units, secondary suites, in-law units, and granny flats. 

Some ADUs are attached to the primary home while others are built separately as detached cottages or tiny houses in the backyard or elsewhere on the property. Either way, ADUs are almost always single-story spaces built to accommodate the daily needs of one-to-two people. They generally include a bedroom, bathroom, kitchen or kitchenette, and sometimes a small living room.

Why are ADUs so Popular?

The rise of multigenerational living is a major contributor to the ADU’s rise in popularity over the last couple of decades. But ADU additions are desirable because they carry a whole plethora of benefits, including the following:

What are the Types of ADUs & their Advantages?

There are a variety of different types of ADU additions, and each type comes with its own set of benefits. The right addition for you depends on your home’s current layout, the size of your lot, your family situation, and your design preferences. Here are a few of the most popular types of ADUs:

Basement ADUs

Depending on the size and shape of your basement, it may be an ideal place to build your new ADU. This can be an affordable and convenient option, especially if your basement already has plumbing.

Above-Garage ADUs

Garage apartments are another great location for ADUs. Like basement ADUs, garage remodels don’t require you to build out, but this option allows for additional privacy and separation. It’s also usually simple and straightforward to build a separate entrance for the ADU with stairs leading up from your driveway.

Detached Cottage ADUs

Detached ADU plans provide the most privacy, noise control, and separation in terms of living arrangements. Since they’re built at ground-level, they’re ideal for aging parents or relatives. They also offer the most flexibility in terms of design. Since they’re built as separate structures, they don’t necessarily have to match your primary home’s exterior.

Aging-in-Place ADUs

Although ADUs can be built in any style to accommodate loved ones of any age, many homeowners choose to build these separate living spaces on their property for their aging parents, hence the name “mother-in-law suite.” With an ADU addition, you can easily incorporate aging-in-place features like adjustable toilets and sinks, walk-in showers, and grab bars to accommodate your family member’s current and future needs.

Is it Expensive to Build an ADU?

Any major home remodeling project comes at a cost, and ADUs are no exception. However, building an ADU for multigenerational living is often a more affordable long-term solution for you and your family than paying for completely separate living spaces. For example, if your parent requires assistance with their daily tasks, providing an aging-in-place ADU for them is often less expensive than paying for the cost of long-term care.

In addition, more and more municipalities are changing their zoning ordinances to encourage the building of ADUs to make affordable housing for multigenerational families more accessible. At Kamanski Construction, we’re committed to working with local community organizations and families to ensure comfortable and affordable housing options are available for all in the Greenville, South Carolina area.

Let us Help you Create the Perfect ADU on your Property!

At Kamanski Construction, we believe every home should be built with care and consideration for the needs of its occupants. You and your family deserve a home that works for you. We specialize in building beautiful, functional custom spaces for homeowners and their loved ones. Our team of experienced designers and contractors will work directly with you to transform your home and property into the space you’ve always wanted.

Ready to get started? Have questions about ADUs or our process? Browse our portfolio, give us a call at (864) 800-9912, or contact us online to learn more about how we work and what we do. We can’t wait to hear about your project!