My 95 year old mother in-law lives in a Granny Flat, she came west from cold Ohio to live behind her sons home in warm San Luis Obispo 15 years ago. Evelyn climbs the exterior staircase to her one bedroom 400 sq ft apartment above a garage. I was inspired to build my own studio following my Granny’s pioneering idea. Mother in-law apartments or Granny Flats have been around for years, but no longer just for Granny’s, ADUs ( Accessory Dwelling Units) offer rental income, work studios, and promote community Multi-generational living and increase your homes property value.
Granny Evelyn with son Damian
Today the modern term is Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs).
In the fall of 2012 I went to a day long summit the International Living Future Institute held in Portland Oregon. Build Small LIVE LARGE brought together architects, developers, builders, remodelers, urban designers, policy makers and real estate professionals to discuss, inspire and share ideas to craft strategies for this growing housing market. Go here to see videos from the summit. This was the first ever summit on space-efficient housing!
Currently the planning bureau and Portland City Council have waived Systems Development Charges on ADUs and they have increased the ADU size limit from 33% to 75% of the primary dwelling or 800 sq ft, whatever is smaller.
Go to this website for a one stop source of information about ADU’s, granny flats, in-law units, backyard cottages.
Let me share with you my 380 sq ft Sellwood Studio ADU that I build last year!
First Permits and paperwork- Upfront work but well worth it.
Now the fun part tearing down the old garage that just was a storage place for junk not a car.
The size 16 x 24 was similar footprint to the garage but was vaulted and has a private patio
BEFORE rear of existing garage
AFTER rear of Sellwood Studio
Emily Refi was the architect that I worked with she now works for Waterleaf Architects.
I like how the Studio is similar in scale to the red cottage in front and that it sits in the middle of my urban garden.
Red Cottage in front is 900 sq ft
Since the garage was demolished a small garden shed as built with nod to the old garage- the original green door was used.
View from Studio set in middle of garden
Thanks Granny Evelyn for inspiring me to build a modern flat! Next time we meet I will take you inside!