Accessory Dwelling Units

What is an Accessory Dwelling Unit?

An accessory dwelling unit or ADU is also known as a secondary dwelling, laneway house, in-law suite or a casita. Although many terms can be used, ADU is the most commonly-used across the United States for this type of housing. ADUs are self-contained living spaces that are either attached or detached to the primary residence and located on the same property.

Can I Build an ADU on my Property?

Many new laws and regulations have been passed across the United States that create more housing opportunities and significantly reduce restrictions on building an ADU on your property. To find out if you are able to build an ADU on your property, you will need to check with your local jurisdiction. There are many areas where the regulations can be different from city to city, so it is important to do your research before you begin. If you’re interested in building an ADU with G.J. Gardner, this is something we can handle for you.

What are the Benefits of an ADU?

  • Provides a long-term investment
  • Take advantage of unused backyard space
  • Multiple finance options available
  • Added tax benefits
  • Increase your property value
  • Diversifies your income risk
  • Added liveable space

Are Tiny Houses and ADUs the same thing?

Not always, but they are really good friends. ADUs can be tiny houses, but tiny houses are not always ADUs.
Here are the major differences between the two:

Tiny House


ADU/Granny Flat

“Tiny” 100-400 sf  SIZE “Small” 300-1,200 sf
Permanent or Mobile  MOBILITY Permanent
Essentially anywhere  LOCATION Existing home property
Cool toy like RV/Boat  DESCRIPTION Real Estate, Lifestyle
None required  UTILITIES All required

What are The Types of ADUs?

Detached New Home

Attached Addition

Basement Apartment

Attic Apartment

Over-Garage Apartment

Garage Conversion

Our ADU Process

From our initial consultation to handing over your keys, we will be with you through it all. Our 7 step ADU Process and Five-Star Performance Checklist, ensure a smooth construction process and a qualify finished product, every time.

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Step 1 - Consultation

The first step in the G.J. Gardner ADU process is to sit down with one of our friendly consultants and discuss your ADU proposed location, feasibility and purpose.

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Step 2 - Preliminary Design

After meeting you, we then get to know everything about your lot/backyard- dimensions, topography, location of utilities, landscaping, etc. We then select an efficient ADU design that fits perfectly into your backyard with required setbacks.

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Step 3 - Plan Approval

At this stage, we request a deposit and present you with a contract. We then will complete your plan and present it to you for final review. Your ADU proposal is then submitted to local municipality and fast tracked for approval.

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Step 4 - Site Preparation

We now start the construction process of your new ADU. During this stage, we connect all existing utilities and prepare the site for foundation.

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Step 5 - Exterior Finish

Your ADU’s exterior color selections and materials will look similar to your current home. Our Five-Star Performance Checklist guarantees that the exterior materials come together to create a beautiful new ADU every time.

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Step 6 - Interior Finish

During this step, your selected inclusions are carefully installed with our highest quality craftsmanship. We also welcome you to inspect our work before we complete the finishing touches.

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Step 7 - Handover

When building is completed, we’ll be issued a Certificate of Occupancy, then request final payment and schedule your walk-though. After we complete the home orientation and received payment, we’ll hand over the keys to your new ADU!


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Why Build With G.J. Gardner Homes?

G.J. Gardner Homes, has been building and renovating homes and ADUs for over 30 years. We bring together a dedicated and talented team of designers, architects, licensed builders, skilled contractors and project managers- with one primary objective- to build quality and affordable homes in your backyard. A member of our qualified team is there beside you from your initial on-site evaluation, through the design process, approval, on-site construction, all the way through handing over the keys to your new ADU. Our ADUs are built to meet all California building standards using only quality building products and materials sourced from well-known suppliers and manufacturers. Click here to view G.J. Gardner ADU Designs.

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