What are Accessory Dwelling Units and How Do they Add Value to Your San Diego Property?

What are Accessory Dwelling Units and How Do they Add Value to Your San Diego Property?

Back in the day, when people would buy plots of land and build their own homes from the ground up, they would often build a small house first, right there on the property so they’d have a place to live while they waited for their real home to be complete. Those are hard to find these days, but accessory dwelling units can exist on properties, and if you have one, you could use it to earn more in rental income.

 What are Accessory Dwelling Units?

 Today, an accessory dwelling unit is any structure on your land that’s either attached to your primary home or separate from it. Examples might include an apartment over your garage, a guest house behind your property, a tiny home that’s mobile and currently installed on your land, or even an in-law suite that’s semi-detached or a completely free-standing dwelling.  In some cases, a basement or attic apartment that’s part of your home could also be considered an accessory dwelling unit, especially if the space comes with its own entrance.

Why Accessory Dwelling Units Increase Your Value

Accessory dwelling units increase the value of your property because these structures provide you with a totally separate living space which can be used to rent out to tenants. Some homeowners choose to rent to temporary tenants through popular websites like Airbnb or Vacation Rental by Owner (VRBO). However, you could also rent these properties out to long term tenants who are well-screened and reliable payers of rent.

 San Diego’s Accessory Dwelling Unit Guidelines

 San Diego has its own set of legal guidelines and regulations that cover accessory dwelling units. You are permitted to add one of these units to your current property if you don’t have one already, even if it’s with the purpose of renting it out. To be considered an accessory dwelling unit, the structure must have its own kitchen, bedroom, living area, and entrance. You’ll need to get a permit before you build one on your property, and you must consider that you’ll need space for at least one additional parking space.

 Vacation and short term rentals are not permitted in your accessory dwelling unit in San Diego. However, you can rent out both the primary property and the accessory dwelling unit. The owner is not required to occupy either of the homes. If your property is within an HOA, you may be prohibited from installing an accessory dwelling unit, so check your rules and regulations.

There are a number of other specifics that you’ll need to pay attention to before you build a new accessory dwelling unit on your current property. But, if you have the space to consider it, or you already have a structure on your property that would be easy to convert, it’s something to consider. The additional rental income would help with your cash flow and your overall ROI.

If you’d like to talk further about accessory dwelling units and what they can do for your investment property, please contact us at Mercer Properties. We’d be happy to tell you more about these homes or anything pertaining to San Diego property management.