Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) Program


About Small Homes, Big Impact

Small Homes, Big Impact is a new pilot program from Housing Trust offering free educational workshops and financial assistance to homeowners seeking to build an accessory dwelling unit (ADU).

ADUs are secondary dwelling units to the primary home and can be built as attached units, detached or convert an existing bedroom or accessory dwelling unit like a garage, depending on what is allowed by the city you live in.

ADUs are a great way to create rental income or provide housing to family such as aging parents and adult children.

The workshops intend to answer the following five questions:

  1. Can I build an ADU on my site? We’ll discuss development standards so you can determine what and where you can build on your site.
  2. How do I get a permit to build an ADU? We’ll discuss the design and entitlement process.
  3. How do I hire a builder and manage construction? We’ll discuss bidding and contracting.
  4. How do I pay for an ADU? We’ll discuss financing options so you can determine what’s best for you.
  5. I’m a landlord, now what? We’ll discuss property management and state and local laws and regulations.

The workshops are once per quarter and are led by local ADU Practitioners (land use consultants, builders, designers, architects, lenders etc.) during a full day course, typically on a Saturday.

Click here to watch highlights of a recent Housing Trust ADU Workshop 

The financial assistance program is currently being developed, it will consist of a planning report grant and a construction loan. We hope to roll out these products in early 2019.

If you would like to receive the Small Homes, Big Impact newsletter and other program updates, please register on our ADU interest list below.

Small Homes, Big Impact newsletter:

Volume 1, Issue 1 (February 2019)

Volume 1, Issue 2 (June 2019)

On May 15, 2019, San Jose’s Mayor Sam Liccardo proposed measures to incentivize homeowners to build ADUs and make them available at rents affordable to low-moderate income renters. The proposal, which includes a forgivable loan program to cover fees, is scheduled to go to council in June. Housing Trust is thrilled to have been identified as the City’s program partner. After City Council moves the plan to approval, we will begin program design and implementation. We will keep you posted with additional details and timing as they become available—please complete the interest list below to receive program announcements.

Sign up here for Small Homes, Big Impact updates

Contact Information

* Elected, appointed or Director level.
* Industry Professional is a builder, designer, architect, real estate professional, etc.
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Equal Housing Opportunity