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City of Portland offering Big Incentives to Build ADUs

ADUs are small, standalone houses, sometimes converted from old garages, and sometimes built as new construction, are called Accessory Dwelling Units, or “ADUs”. Building an ADU on a property is neither cheap nor simple, but if you’re a homeowner with an inclination to have an ADU on your property, NOW is a great time to think about building one. Not only does Portland’s zoning code allow ADUs to be developed on most residential lots, but in an attempt to promote more ADUs within city limits, Portland has temporarily waived System Development Charges (which typically cost $7-12K) through June, 2013. Given that we’re now starting our way in 2012, many homeowners are thinking more seriously about building an ADU on their property.

If you are a homeowner in the area, maybe you’d like some flexible living space for a family member, or maybe you’d like to have some additional rental income, or maybe like me, you actually want to live in a smaller space that you built yourself and rent out the larger house. It’s also notable that building an ADU is one of the most ‘green’ decisions you can make for your city. Last month, Energy Trust of Oregon recently added ADUs to their list of residential structures eligible to receive a monetary incentive for energy efficient design (for qualifying structures, this incentive can be ~$2K).

In the course of building, and now living in, my ADU in NE Portland, I became so passionate about seeing more of them built that I have begun to offer classes to help other homeowners who want to build one. The one-day class is an on-ramp to the elaborate process of designing and building an ADU. The class will cover the spectrum of information that homeowners need to know to design and build an ADU on their property and is intended to help homeowner’s understand the ADU design, permit, management, and building process.

If you’re interested in learning more about building an ADU, visit http://pdxadu.blogspot.com/p/adu-class.html or http://accessorydwellings.org/

Class: Building an Accessory Dwelling Unit on Your Property in Portland, Oregon
Saturday, January 21st. 9am-5pm.  Register here: http://pdxadu3.eventbrite.com/

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