Potential Uses for Accessory Dwelling Units

Homeowners who build accessory dwelling units often do so in order to accommodate family members, visitors, or renters at a reasonable cost. 

However, there are plenty of other uses for a detached or attached accessory dwelling unit on your property. To try to help you decide whether or not an accessory dwelling unit is right for you, here are some of the most common uses for them. 

If you’re thinking about building an accessory dwelling unit, take a look at what they are typically used for.

Housing grandparents and older parents 

For a lot of families, accessory dwelling units are an affordable and easy way to invite grandparents or older parents to come and live with them. Assisted living communities can easily cost upwards of $7,000 a month! 

In comparison, a detached accessory dwelling unit costs from $750 to $1,000 per month. Not only does it save you money, it allows your grandparents or parents to be close by so that they can be with you and your children. 

Long-term and short-term rental income 

If you live in an area that is heavily trafficked with tourists, you may be missing out on loads of money via rental income. Whether you are looking to rent out space to long-term rentals, or want to sign up to be a host on AirBnb, Vrbo, or a similar service, installing an accessory dwelling unit is a fantastic way to build out your portfolio of passive income. 

Bonus space for an at-home office or studio 

Whether you’re self-employed, a writer, a musician or an artist, having an accessory dwelling unit so that you can have your own private space to do your work can dramatically improve your work and your life-work balance. 

By using an accessory dwelling unit as your at-home office, it allows you to be close by while also establishing a clear separation between home and work. On top of that, with a small kitchen, bathroom, and other housing necessities, you can work all day without having to go back and forth between your home and your ADU. 

Low-cost housing for adult children 

In high-cost areas, accessory dwelling units can serve as safety nets for your adult children who are still looking to get on their feet. They are also useful for children who are capable of productive work but have chronic health or developmental issues that prevent them from fully living independently. 

Private accommodations for guests 

If you have a big family that loves to visit and stay with you, having an accessory dwelling unit can be a great way for you to both play the welcoming host, and maintain your own sense of privacy during their visit as well. 

Specialized space 

Your property is obviously quite unique. Depending on what your home is like, your accessory dwelling unit could be used to either improve and accentuate an existing function of your home or create an entirely new addition. 

For example, if you have a pool in your backyard, your accessory dwelling unit could be used as a comfortable pool house. It could also be used as a storage area, a gym, or as a party overflow if you are keen on hosting parties throughout the year. 

Another common use is to turn an ADU into a man cave for Saturday or Sunday’s slate of football games!