As I’ve interviewed homeowners, designers, and builders about ADUs over the past several years, one thing that has impressed me is how many people are using an ADU as part of their retirement plan. ADUs can provide housing flexibility, additional income, one-floor living to age-in-place, proximity to family members and caretakers, or even just a place to call home when traveling.
Aging-in-place was a key design consideration for Andy Simon and Ruby Perry as they designed an ADU in their daughter and son-in-law’s backyard. Their one-story ADU incorporates doors with adequate clearance for a wheelchair. Ruby and Andy’s ADU was completely paid off in three years and it is now serving as Andy and Ruby’s dwelling, just as they’d intended. Three generations have created a web of mutual interdependence including childcare, gardening, and shared meals.
Jane says her greatest inspiration was to have a flexible place which she could live in herself or rent out to family or tenants. In order to fund construction of the ADU, Jane refinanced her car, sold stock, worked, and scraped money together.