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New California ADU Laws Explained 

New California ADU Laws Explained 


January 12, 2024

CALIFORNIA ADU LAWS 2024 – Are you a homeowner in California looking to maximize your property’s potential or considering a valuable investment opportunity? The year 2024 brings exciting news for you as California’s Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) laws have undergone significant changes, and we, as your trusted California general contracting company, are here to guide you through the possibilities and opportunities these new laws offer. 

Why ADUs Matter in California

Accessory Dwelling Units, commonly referred to as ADUs, have gained immense popularity in California for several compelling reasons:

1. Value Addition: ADUs add substantial value to your property, making it a lucrative investment.

2. Affordable Construction: Especially for garage conversions, ADUs offer a cost-effective way to expand your living space.

3. Rental Income: As rental prices continue to rise, ADUs provide homeowners with an additional source of rental income.

4. Extended Family Housing: ADUs offer affordable housing solutions for extended family members while allowing everyone to maintain their privacy.

5. Aging in Place: These units provide the flexibility of shared living spaces, enabling seniors to age comfortably in their homes.

2024 California ADU Laws Highlights

CBS8 reports “one new law, AB 1033, gives cities the option to allow homeowners to sell their ADUs separately from the main house”. 

The year 2024 marks a pivotal moment for California’s ADU landscape. New legislation has been enacted, opening doors to even more opportunities for homeowners. Here are some key highlights:

AB 1033 – Separate Sale of ADUs: This law allows homeowners to sell one or more ADUs separately from their primary residence. It also authorizes local agencies to permit ADUs to be sold as condominiums with approval from the California Department of Real Estate. Homeowners may even consider creating a Homeowners Association (HOA) to manage common property.

AB 976 – Owner-Occupancy Prohibition: Assembly Bill 976 extends the prohibition on local agencies imposing “owner-occupancy” conditions on ADUs indefinitely. This means local agencies cannot impose such requirements for new ADU projects permitted after January 1, 2025 (except for Junior ADUs).

AB 434 – Pre-Approved ADU Plans: Assembly Bill 434 mandates that all California cities and municipalities have pre-approved ADU plan schemes in place by January 1, 2025. This simplifies the process for applicants by allowing access to pre-approved designs while ensuring that cities can charge fees for access and modifications.

Additional Advancements and Benefits

Apart from the above laws, there are more exciting changes worth mentioning:

Reduced Response Time: Assembly Bill 2221 requires all agencies involved in reviewing ADU plans to respond within 60 days of submission, streamlining the application process.

Height Restrictions Revised: ADU height restrictions have been amended to allow for more flexibility, making it easier to construct ADUs, especially near public transit.

Redefined Setbacks: Setback requirements have been modified, making it easier to build ADUs even if your property has front setback limitations.

Elimination of Unpermitted Conditions: Senate Bill 897 removes restrictions related to non-conforming zoning conditions, building code violations, or unpermitted structures, unless they pose health or safety concerns.

Fire Sprinkler Requirement: SB 897 eliminates the need for fire sprinklers in the main dwelling when permitting an ADU.

The Role of BNO Builders General Contractors

As a California-based general contracting company, we are committed to helping homeowners make the most of these new opportunities. Whether you’re interested in constructing a new ADU, converting an existing space, or exploring the potential of your property, our experienced team is here to guide you through every step of the process.

California’s 2024 ADU laws are paving the way for homeowners to invest wisely, create additional income streams, and enhance the functionality of their properties. With the right guidance and expertise from a trusted general contracting company like ours, you can turn these legislative changes into a pathway to financial security and improved living conditions. It’s time to unlock the full potential of your California property under the new ADU laws. Contact us today to start your ADU journey!

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