The Real Deal Los Angeles

City Planning loosens restrictions on “granny flats”

State rules supersede LA laws on building secondary units: memo
January 10, 2017 05:00PM

Credit: Home renovation hints, Getty Images

Angelenos looking to draw in some extra cash with a secondary unit or “granny flat” can start hammering away thanks to a memo issued by City Planning on Dec. 30.

As of Jan. 1, applicants can apply for a permit to construct a secondary unit as long as the dwelling meets state standards as opposed to city laws, the memo states.

The City Council pushed for stricter requirements on secondary units including limiting their size. The law restricted the size of accessory dwelling units to 640 square feet, whereas state law allowed units up to 1,200 square feet.

The memo favored the state requirements, making the limits set by City Council null and void, Curbed reported. The City Council will now have to adopt a new ordinance that complies with state standards.

Granny flats have been a point of contention between the city and advocates of affordable housing with the debate picking up speed in recent months. Advocates argue additional granny flats would ease the housing shortage without changing the look of a neighborhood, while opponents argue the units would increase traffic. [Curbed]  —  Subrina Hudson