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If you own a single-family home, and you don’t want to move, an accessory
dwelling unit (ADU) may help you keep your independence. An ADU (sometimes called
an in-law apartment, an accessory apartment, or a second unit) is a second
living space within your home or on your lot. It has a separate living and
sleeping area, a place to cook, and a bathroom. Spaces such as an upstairs,
basement, attic, or area over the garage can be turned into ADUs.
Creating an ADU at your home may bring you additional income,
companionship, and help with house and yard maintenance. Having someone
there to help with your personal needs, or getting your mail, or joining you
for dinner can help you maintain your independence.
Family members might be interested in living in an ADU in your home, or
you may want to build a separate living space at your family member’s home.
Only you and your family can decide what choice is best for you. Either
choice can help you maintain your independence.
If you decide to create an ADU at your home, check with your local zoning
office to be sure ADUs are allowed in your area. Most communities have rules
The cost for an ADU can vary widely depending on how big it is, and how
much it costs for building materials and workers. Some people do part of the
construction work themselves to lower the cost.
To get more information about supportive housing and home modification,
look at the National Resource Center on Supportive Housing and Home Modification website.