STATEWIDE UPDATE: New California ADU Bills SB13, AB68, AB881, AB670 have passed. These laws will create more options for building an ADU in Sacramento in 2020. To prepare for the upcoming changes use our ADU Services to learn how these laws will effect your property!
Schedule ADU Consultation (916) 249-1279 ext: 074

Sacramento ADUs

Everything about building Accessory Dwelling Units in Sacramento, CA

Research local zoning codes for ADU design
Calculate returns and costs to get financing
Estimate your project costs and timeline

Check your property to get zoning info & price quotes for ADU feasibility & design services:

I'm interested in


Sacramento ADU Guidelines Last Updated 11/13/19

codes

The city government of Sacramento has updated its local zoning codes to comply with the State ADU mandate.
The California Building Code (CBC) 2016 is adopted with the following amendment(s): 2017-0005, 2016-0052
Relevant state bill updates for SB13, AB68, AB881, AB670 are shown in green below.


hintsights

City Hint: The city permitted a total of 32 ADU project(s) in the past year of 2018, which is below the average compared to other cities in California.


Zoning

Number of ADUs allowed:

Only one ADU unit is permitted on any one lot.

AB68 & AB881 Update: Properties which convert existing space to create ADUs may be eligible for one ADU -AND- one JADU.

Types of ADUs allowed:

Attached, Detached or junior ADU. Conversion of existing space or new construction permitted.

Lot size:

No minimum lot size is required to develop an ADU, other than any required by the underlying zoning district.

AB68 & AB881 Update: Properties will not be subject to minimum lot standards by ordinance or of the applicable zoning district.

ADU size:

The floor area of a detached ADU unit shall not exceed 1,200 square feet. The calculation of the floor area of the detached ADU unit includes all of the floor area within the building envelope of the entire detached structure, excluding garage space and exterior stairs. The floor area of an attached ADU unit shall not exceed 50% of the existing living area, with a maximum increase in floor area of 1,200 square feet. If a garage is provided for the attached ADU unit, the calculation of the floor area of the ADU unit does not include the floor area of the garage.

AB68 & AB881 Update: Properties will be allowed up to 850 square feet for a one bedroom or up to 1,000 square feet for a two bedroom ADU.

Setbacks:

The height, lot coverage, and setback requirements applicable to the lot on which the ADU unit is located apply to the ADU, except for the following: No setback is required for an existing legal-constructed accessory structure that is converted to an ADU unit; and An ADU unit constructed above an accessory structure shall have a minimum rear-yard setback of five feet; and a minimum side-yard setback equal to the side-yard setback required by the zoning designation for the primary dwelling unit or five feet, whichever is less. For secondary dwelling units that do not meet the zoning designation’s setback requirements for the primary dwelling unit, no portion of any window that faces the lot line where the setback requirement for the primary dwelling unit is not met may extend above 10 feet from the ground. The minimum distance between the primary single-unit dwelling and a detached secondary dwelling unit is six feet.

AB68 & AB881 Update: The maximum required setback for a detached new construction ADU shall be no more than 4 feet from the rear or side property lines.

Parking:

One space per dwelling unit, except on lots equal to or less than 3,200 square feet in the Central City, where there is no minimum requirement.

Additional parking may be required at one parking space per bedroom so that that a justification could be made that the additional parking requirements are directly related to the use of the ADU and are consistent with existing neighborhood standards applicable to existing dwellings.

Vehicle parking spaces to function independently. Each parking space in an off-street vehicle parking facilities shall function independently of any other parking space, with the following exceptions: Tandem parking spaces. Off-street vehicle parking facilities that serve a single- unit dwelling, a duplex dwelling, or that are signed as parking exclusively for office employees may utilize tandem parking spaces. Attendant parking. Attendant vehicle parking is permitted with a director-level site plan and design review, as provided in section. The director may waive or reduce off-street vehicle parking facility development standards required by this chapter as part of site plan and design review. Stacked parking. Off-street vehicle parking structures that utilize mechanical lifts for stacking parked cars are allowed.

~ State Requirements ~ Properties that are within 0.5 miles walking distance from a public transit station are exempt from additional parking requirements for adding an ADU to the property.

AB68 & AB881 Update: Properties which convert an existing garage will not be subject to replacement parking requirements.

Fire Safety:

Fire sprinklers are required if fire sprinklers are existing or would be required for the primary home.

Shape, materials and style:

The ADU unit shall be designed to be architecturally compatible with the primary single-unit dwelling and the surrounding neighborhood in terms of scale; massing; and color, material, and texture of all exterior materials, including the roof, siding, window types, detailing, and trim.

New ADU units should use universal access design features, including “no step” entrances, where topography and site constraints allow.
No portion of a ADU unit balcony, deck, or open-stair landing that faces the rear lot line or the side lot line nearest to the ADU unit shall be higher than three feet from the ground. For ADU units that do not meet the zoning designation’s setback requirements for the primary dwelling unit, no portion of any window that faces the lot line where the setback requirement for the primary dwelling unit is not met may extend above 10 feet from the ground.

Height:

The maximum height is of an ADU shall be that of the underlying zone. The Zoning Administrator may approve a residential accessory dwelling which exceeds these standards provided the proposed height will not adversely affect adjoining residentially zoned property, and further provided that the residential accessory dwelling does not exceed the allowable height of the primary residential structure on the lot.

Design review:

The design of the ADU unit shall conform to the design guidelines applicable to the lot on which the ADU unit is located. If the design of the primary single-unit dwelling or surrounding neighborhood conflict with the applicable design guidelines, the design guidelines control.

Number of Bedrooms:

Not specified by State Standards.

Ownership

The ADU unit shall not be intended for sale separate from the primary dwelling unit and may be rented.

SB13 Update: Owner-occupancy requirements for ADUs will be voided statewide for 5 years.

Utility connections:

Public sewer and water facilities shall be provided in the RD zones.

Permit Fees

SB13 Update: Local impact fees for ADUs will be reduced substantially statewide.

Historic Requirements

A secondary dwelling unit located within a historic district or accessory to a landmark is subject to site plan and design review.

Entry

No passageway shall be required in conjunction with the construction of a secondary dwelling unit.

Lot Coverage

A secondary dwelling unit shall not be included in the calculation of the density of the lot on which the secondary dwelling unit is located.

Existing Structures

Conversion of existing structures: The requirements in subsections A through D, above, do not apply to a secondary dwelling unit that (1) is entirely contained within an existing single-unit dwelling or existing legally-constructed accessory structure, (2) is not located within a historic district or, if located within a historic district, does not involve modifications to the exterior of the existing structure, (3) does not involve a landmark or, if involving a landmark, does not involve modifications to the exterior of the landmark, (4) has exterior access independent from the existing primary dwelling unit, and (5) the side and rear setbacks are sufficient for fire safety.

SB13 Update: Amnesty program to permit unpermitted units will be administered statewide, allowing non-health and safety code violations to be deferred.

Deviations

Deviations from development and design standards.

A request to deviate from the development standards contained in subsection C and the design guidelines contained in subsection D may be made by application for site plan and design review under chapter 17.808. (Ord. 2017-0008 § 7; Ord. 2013-0020 § 1; Ord. 2013-0007 § 1)

Residential Building Code:

The California Building Code (CBC) 2016 is adopted with the following amendment(s): 2017-0005, 2016-0052

Sacramento City Planning Offices
Permitting

City of Sacramento Community Development Department

300 Richards Boulevard, 3rd Floor Sacramento, CA 95811 Sacramento, CA 95811

Sacramento ADU Marketplace

How can I get my ADU built?

Use our ADU Services and Marketplace to get expert assistance, permit-ready ADU designs and on-site contractor estimates on one platform.

Fast and low cost ADU design services

Search local contractors to get estimates

Featured Financing Program

ADU Financing

CA Statewide


Tailored to ADU construction.

Based on project size & appreciation.

Learn how to qualify.


Karyn Jones

Program Representative

Call Now (760) 496-5959

Read Sacramento Housing Market Update

Featured ArticleSacramento, CA
Featured ArticleSacramento, CA
Featured ArticleSacramento, CA

ADU Guides

ADU Services

A recent customer review:

"The most beneficial service provided was calling the city on my behalf. This saved me a significant amount of time because I am rarely able to get someone from the city on the phone, nor do they return calls. I usually have to visit the permit offices."

Susan in Pasadena, CA

Customer since August, 2018


Learn about ADU Services


Estimate ADU Potential
Financing
Costs / ROI

APPRECIATION ESTIMATE

* upon completion of ADU

CONSTRUCTION COST ESTIMATE

* based on local average price per sqft

RENTAL ESTIMATE

* estimated by location

MORTGAGE ESTIMATE

* 30 years / 5% interest rate / 20% down payment

BASED ON LOCAL AVERAGE PROPERTY DATA & VALUE

Appreciation Estimate = (Base Value: $) / (Home's Living Space: sqft) * (ADU's Living Space: sqft)

Rental Estimate = (Rent Per Sqft: $2.06) * (ADU's Living Space: sqft)




How can I get my ADU built?

Our ADU Services and ADU Marketplace provide the fastest and lowest cost way to get started with your ADU project.

How does it work? Get started on your project with expert assistance and without commitment using our customized ADU Property and Design Reports as your first step. Then, get on-site visits from local contractors who can provide you with guidance and estimates for your ADU project.

Our Key Advantages

Compare all the costs and services in one place to find the best fit for your needs and budget

Order ADU zoning research, permit-ready designs and contractor estimates on one platform

Get started on your timeline and your terms, without commitment

The fastest and lowest cost way to get started with your ADU project





Our ADU Process

USE ADU SERVICES
Expert Feasibility & Zoning Research

Use our ADU Property & Design Reports as a starting point to plan your ADU project. Our experts will do the legwork with your city or county planning office and design custom ADU concepts for your property and your needs.

OPEN ADU MARKETPLACE
Find contractors to build your ADU

Use our local contractor database to get on-site visits and cost estimates to compare services for your ADU project.

Getting your designs ready for city permitting and construction can speed up your ADU project and reduce unforseen costs later on in the process.




Check your property to get zoning qualification & price quotes for ADU Services:

Access cost estimates, zoning analysis, design concepts and order ADU Services to get help with feasibility, design and permitting for your ADU project. Check your property to get started!

I'm interested in