What you need to know about Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs)

By 33 on February 11, 2021

Do you know that you may be able to add units to your property and create additional income? 

What is an ADU? 

An Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) is an additional housing unit added onto a existing primary unit. Different types of ADU’s include; carriage houses, coach houses and granny flats. Conversion units, built-out space in the basement of a multi-unit or a space above a garage can all be ADUs.  

The city of Chicago deemed ADUs illegal in the 1950’s based on fears of overcrowding caused by population growth.  The city tore down many of the existing ADUs in favor of larger single family residences. This made way for larger single-family homes and rear additions. 

On December 15, 2020 the joint committee on Housing and Zoning heard a revised ADU ordinance. The City Council passed the ordinance and adopted it on Wednesday, December 16, 2020. 

ADUs are now legal in Chicago, does your property qualify? 

What should you do today? Now is the time to look into the process and determine if it is right for your property. And more importantly if an ADU could generate additional income. The city will not issue permits until May 2021.

The current ordinance is in play for specified pilot zones. It does not apply to all areas or building types in the city. Even with a zoning variance, ADUs may not be approved in areas outside of the pilot zones.  

New ADUs cannot be listed on short-term listing sites. Based on the number of units created, there might be affordable housing requirements. 

What’s next? 

We realize there are a lot of questions and we want to help you navigate the process. Do you know if an ADU is an option for your property? Are you in an approved zone? Can you apply for a variance? Please contact kevin@cubedconstruction.com or 773-219-0084 to evaluate your eligibility. 

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