Volume 1 Issue 1
Vianey Nava, ADU Program Manager (R) and Jessica Prasad, Program Associate (L)
Small Homes,  Big Impact

We are excited to issue our very first
Small Home, Big Impact ADU Program Newsletter! We hope to provide you with information and resources to help you move forward with your accessory dwelling unit (ADU).

Through a generous grant from JP Morgan Chase and additional support from Silicon Valley Community Foundation and Wells Fargo, Housing Trust was able to start an ADU Program that seeks to address the common barriers for homeowners looking to build an accessory dwelling unit, education and financing. 

To accomplish these goals Vianey Nava, ADU Program Manager and Jessica Prasad, ADU Program Associate, where hired in 2018. To date, they have hosted four ADU workshops, one ADU conference for public officials, one panel discussion, three ADU open house tours and two ADU Meet Ups for Industry Professionals. We will launch the financial program early 2019.
What is an ADU?

MicroADU Plan - 150 sq.ft., prefabADU
ADUs are secondary units to a primary home, also referred to as granny units or backyard cottages. These units are complete independent living facilities, with kitchen and bathroom, for one or more persons. ADUs are an ideal housing option for homeowners to keep their loved ones close - parents, adult children, and friends - or choose to move into the unit themselves. 

Homeowners play a critical role in this housing crisis by creating units while creating wealth.  ADUs are a great solution for the missing middle, both economically and as a housing option. Research shows that ADUs rent for below fair market rents and work well as middle homes for small households as urban infill in lower density areas.
ADU Workshops

S mall Homes, Big Impact's goal is to teach you how to become your own project manager and developer .  At these workshops, a panel of experts will answer the following questions for you:
SHBI's ADU Workshop, February 2, 2019 
  • Can I build an ADU on my site?
  • How do I get it permitted?
  • How do I put my team together?
  • How do I finance it?
  • I'm a landlord, now what?

This is a free, full-day workshop where you will learn everything you need to know to build your ADU and meet with our preferred vendors (designers, builders, lenders, etc.) --
all in one afternoon. We will review your site plan to make sure you understand the development standards. We also talk a lot about the long term use of an ADU and during the design process our experts will talk about Universal Design, these are thoughtful design concepts that are good for everyone regardless of age or mobility and therefore will make aging in place easier.

Our builders will walk you through the contracting and construction process and insist that you hire a reputable, licensed and insured general contractor. You can look up licenses on the State's Department of Consumer Affairs and while you are on the website, you should read through the consumer section about   hiring a contractor. They will also walk you through a sample budget estimate, to help you understand the cost line items to expect for your project.

In order to participation in one of our workshops, we require that you respond to our surveys -- our funding requires us to collect data about the homeowners we are serving and it helps us track your progress and shape the program to meet your needs.

Click here to access ADU resources such as the SHBI's Preferred Vendor list, budget estimate, development flow chart an a guide to help you develop your own site plan and many other resources. 
ADU Financing 

Housing Trust's financing program consists of a grant and construction loan. The grant will pay for a consultant to complete a site assessment and determine if you can build an ADU and if so, what can be built. The construction loan will consists of a 36-month term, maximum $250,000 loan at about 5% interest with tenant income restrictions.

We will make an announcement once the grant and loan application period is open.

In the meantime, we recommend that you utilize the Secondary Unit Calculator which will help you ballpark cost of construction, rents and net income. This calculator contains information for cities in San Mateo, we will soon host the calculator with cities for Santa Clara County, stay tuned.

Leasing your ADU 
Once you are a landlord, you are now subject to Fair Housing Laws and a slew of other laws and regulations. We strongly recommend that you become a member of a local apartment association such as the California Apartment Association ( CAA) or Apartment Owners Association of California ( AOA) so that you may access property management classes, forms, tenant screening and many other services. Project Sentinel can also help you comply with fair housing laws in your online advertisements.

You may also choose to connect with specific organizations that help house homeless individuals such as Abode Services and Santa Clara County Housing Authority which administers Housing Choice Vouchers (Section 8) program.

Lastly ...

Please feel free to forward this newsletter to anyone interested in building an ADU.

Anyone interested in receiving future newsletters, should register on our interest list.

If you would like to join a community of ADU enthusiast, please like our Facebook page!

Housing Trust Silicon Valley
75 E. Santa Clara St., Ste 1350
San Jose, CA 95113