SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) — The city-by-city patchwork of often-maddening rules that govern whether you can have a legal in-law apartment are about to change with a new statewide law that’s designed to create more affordable rental housing.
Governor Jerry Brown signed SB-1069 into law in part of the state’s response to the affordable housing crisis.READ MORE: San Jose Stoners Find Ways To Celebrate 4/20, Pandemic-Style
The law allows homeowners to remodel to accessory dwelling units, commonly known as in-law or granny units, without all the costs that many cities impose now.
Authored by State Sen. Bob Wieckowski (D-Fremont), the law speeds up the approval process for in-law unit construction, removes secondary utility hook up fees already paid for by the main unit owners, and eliminates parking requirements if the in-law unit is near public transit.READ MORE: Hope, Skepticism: Oaklanders Share Of Feelings About Guilty Verdict In George Floyd Murder Trial
Leslie Smith works in San Francisco, but was priced out of the city’s rising rents, so she decided to renovate a home in Oakland and add a second unit.
“I am ecstatic that it’s all going through. Without the second unit, I wouldn’t have been able to afford here,” Smith told KCBS.
It’s estimated that if just 10 percent of homeowners added a second unit of some type, it could add 150,000 units to the Bay Area.MORE NEWS: Plan To Let CA Politicians See Names On Recall Petitions Won't Move Forward
“Now I get to be the homeowner, and have someone else pay my mortgage,” Smith said.