You’ve probably heard about Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) by now if you’re a property owner in Oregon. They’ve been talked about ad nauseam in the news and online to demystify the newest solution to our affordable housing crisis. Perhaps your neighbor, family, or friend built one over the last decade, and you’ve talked to them about it. All of that considered, ADUs are still a relatively new concept. Homeowners are unaware of how building an ADU can provide value to their lives, both in the short-term and the long-term.
With the passage of HB 2001 and the continual rise in housing costs, we expect more and more families to explore the idea of building an ADU. With that in mind, we have outlined 3 scenarios in which building an ADU may be the perfect solution to your situation.
1. YOU’RE LOOKING TO DOWNSIZE:
You’ve decided that your current home simply has more space than you need. Perhaps you’re an empty nester and you no longer utilize those extra two bedrooms and bathrooms your kids used to occupy. Maybe you’re tired of spending so much time cleaning and maintaining the house day-to-day. You could simply want to start saving money. There are many reasons you may want to downsize. It’s important to realize that moving to a smaller home is not your only option.
Moving to a new home can be a huge deterrent for many homeowners. It’s time-consuming, It’s costly, and it’s stressful. Plus, many people love their neighborhood and don’t want to leave that behind. By building an ADU on your property, you avoid the major pitfalls of moving while still crafting a new living space that’s perfect for your needs.
2. You’re Looking For The Best Way To Age In Place:
Traditional housing poses many challenges for families looking to comfortably age-in-place. Simply put, older homes will likely not feature the amenities you’ll need as you age. Features such as no barrier entrances, wider doors, and zero threshold bathrooms can make a huge difference in your day-to-day. On top of that, your ADU can be built using zero energy building techniques. You’ll save money and reduce your carbon footprint; that’s a win-win!
As mentioned above, ADUs allow families to create the perfect living space for their needs while also allowing you to stay at your current property and near your current support system (i.e. friends and family).
Maybe your kids moved out years ago and have started their own families. Like scenario one, you realize that you have too much space and it wasn’t built with aging-in-place in mind. If this is the case, you could remodel your current home to align with your aging-in-place needs, but that doesn’t solve the space dilemma. You could also sell your current home and move into a smaller location, but finding a home already equipped with aging-in-place amenities can be challenging.
Why not experience the best of both worlds? You can stay at your current property, build a new, custom living space that accommodates your aging-in-place needs, all while avoiding the headaches of moving.
3. You’re Looking For Another Source Of Income
This is one of the main reasons people come to us with ADU interest. While many are skeptical after hearing the upfront cost, their sticker shock subdues when the long-term benefits are explained. Many people we have engaged with are interested in building an ADU to obtain another source of income to meet a particular goal or solve a problem.
Some of the reasons we’ve heard include:
- Generating an additional source of income to improve work/life balance and spend more time on what they love to do (be with family, travel, hobbies, etc).
- Generating an additional source of income so the mortgage on their property can be paid off sooner.
- A way to afford living in a part of town (or Portland in general!) that might be otherwise challenging.
There are numerous other ways to benefit from additional income. ADUs are a great way to assist you in creating the life you want to live.
We hope this blog post was helpful in determining whether an ADU is right for your situation. We’d also like to include that there are plenty of other scenarios in which building an ADU may be beneficial. The scenarios listed above are just a few.