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Is It Worth Adding an ADU to Your Custom Home?

July 22, 2020

When you’re building your custom home, you’re quite literally bringing a dream to life. The benefit of custom homebuilding is that you get to choose every single element of your home, from the architectural style down to the most unique design details.

One critical thing to keep in mind as you build your new custom home is how it will grow with you and your family — and that’s where accessory dwelling units (ADUs) like garage apartments enter the picture. In recent years, ADUs have surged in popularity, both across the US and right here in Austin, as an important feature of new custom homes. 

But what exactly are ADUs, and why should you want one? Read on to learn everything you need to know about this booming architectural trend, and how an accessory dwelling unit in your Austin custom home is one of the best decisions you can make as a homebuyer.

What Are ADUs, and What Makes Them So Desirable?

An ADU is the regulatory term for a secondary house or apartment that exists on the same lot as a larger, primary house. They are sometimes referred to as mother-in-law flats or guesthouses. Desire for ADUs has surged across the country, especially in the Austin metropolitan area, where our population is projected to climb to 4.5 million in the next 30 years. 

The City of Austin is encouraging urban development, and granting homebuyers the ability to add ADUs to their homes will greatly benefit our rapidly growing city. But ADUs are also incredibly beneficial for homebuyers on a personal level, too, offering advantages such as:

  • Allows you to reap passive income. It should come as no surprise that Austin is the most expensive city in Texas. But owning an ADU in Austin allows you to rent out your space as a short-term rental site to tourists and travelers, which can go a long way toward helping cover your mortgage.
  • Keeps visitors close by but with privacy. Why make visiting family and friends rent a hotel or Airbnb when they can stay in your own backyard? 
  • Creates a space for family who need it. Whether it’s aging parents, in-laws, or adult children who move back temporarily for financial help, an ADU is a perfect way to stay close to family and help them out during trying times. 
  • Increases your home’s value. Should you ever decide to sell your home, an Austin accessory dwelling unit can add to your home’s resale value — studies show an increase of up to 34%.
  • Gives you a separate space for focus and/or privacy. Regardless of the square footage of our homes, we sometimes need a place to get away from it all. Whether you’re an entrepreneur, artist, musician, or yoga enthusiast — or just need a place of your own for some peace and quiet — an ADU is the perfect way to create your own studio, personal office, or meditation space. 

Factors That Affect the Cost of an ADU

Just as with building your custom home, the cost of adding an ADU to your custom home all depends on how you want your space to look and function. However, here are some of the factors you can expect to influence the price:

  • Construction costs. What type of structure you need will depend on what purpose you want it to serve. Are you looking for a simple space to function solely as sleeping quarters? If you want your ADU to function as a liveable space, it will require a full bathroom and kitchen and may require a separate driveway and/or garage — which will play a big role in the cost of your ADU. 
  • Design costs. This is the fun part, and it’s also where you have the most control over your budget. How decked out do you want your space to be?
  • Utility connection costs. Depending on how you want to use your ADU, you may need to upgrade your utilities so that they’re not sharing with the main house — particularly if you treat your ADU as a rental property. 

Let Paradisa Homes Add an ADU to Your New Custom Home

At Paradisa Homes, we believe that your custom home should reflect your unique personal style, right down to every last detail. We’re experts in a classic, modern style — think open-floor plans and lots of natural light — that never goes out of fashion. For your ADU, our architects and designers will help you achieve a look that’s contemporary and timeless yet also cohesive with the look of your home itself, no matter what your design style. 

Want to learn more about our ADUs and custom homes? Contact us today to learn how our full-service team can help you design and build the custom home of your dreams.