A Garage Conversion Demonstrates How to Create Flexible Accessory Dwelling Units

accessory dwelling unit, garage apartment
California recently introduced legislation related to accessory dwelling units, or ADUs, that allows the construction of up to two ADUs (a total of 2,400 additional square feet) on a single-family lot, as well as remodeling of garages and basements for rental use.

According to California’s Housing Emergency Update, the state will need 1.4 million more affordable rental houses to meet current need. In response, California recently introduced legislation related to accessory dwelling units, or ADUs, that allows the construction of up to two ADUs (a total of 2,400 additional square feet) on a single-family lot, as well as remodeling of garages and basements for rental use. A significant reduction in construction taxes will foster homeowners to build ADUs.

The project meets the dynamic needs of different moments, using operable panels to divide the bedroom into two spaces, a bed integrated into a bookcase to convert the living room into a guest bedroom.

Modern Granny Flat, the ADU arm of Losada Garcia Architects, was hired by a San Diego homeowner who had purchased a house for his parents and another relative to live in. He wanted to remodel the existing 1,100-square-foot garage into an ADU for himself.

The architectural solution took the shape of a box, which houses the plumbing for the kitchen, storage areas and bathroom with three skylights in the center of the floor plan for better flexibility.

A mobile island allows for different configurations of the kitchen; a sliding shoe cabinet saves space; and a folding table deploys a workstation.

The project meets the dynamic needs of different moments, using operable panels to divide the bedroom into two spaces, a bed integrated into a bookcase to convert the living room into a guest bedroom, a mobile island to allow for different configurations of the kitchen, a sliding shoe cabinet to save space and a folding table to deploy a workstation.

“Because most of the detached garages in California aren’t used for cars, making a change from a garage to rentable space is relatively easy and quick, so it’s expected to be the first step toward a higher-density city in California,” explains Ramiro Losada-Amor, architect for the project.

PHOTOS: Modern Granny Flat

Retrofit Team

DESIGN ARCHITECT: Modern Granny Flat with Losada Garcia Architects

The architectural solution took the shape of a box, which houses the plumbing for the kitchen, storage areas and bathroom with three skylights in the center of the floor plan for better flexibility.

GENERAL CONTRACTOR: Treadlight Construction Inc.

GARAGE DOOR: Coastal Garage Doors

Materials

THREE-PLY BIRCH: Th&h Hardwoods

WINDOWS: Dixieline Lumber & Home Centers

REFRIGERATOR: Haier

RANGE: KitchenAid

TILES: Arizona Tile

SINK: Toto

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