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What is included in your ADU Permit Set?

Housable’s ADU permit set includes all of the important information you need to submit to the city planning office to get approved - including design, drafting, zoning, and site layouts.

Housable offers a three step process to customers ready to build an ADU: Property Report, Design Report and Permit Set.

The ADU Property Report is for people who are at the very beginning of the research process. They are still wondering whether they are eligible to build an ADU, and are trying to make sense of local zoning codes. With a free Property Report, you’ll get a holistic sense of whether you can build and how the codes affect your property.

Next, the ADU Design Report is for customers who are, as the name suggests, looking to develop some ADU designs but aren’t close to submitting an application to their local planning office. They are likely still in the exploratory phase but are ready to take the first step in visualizing and planning their project.

Finally, the ADU Permit Set is for customers who are ready to draft the plans they need to submit their project for approval and to start gathering estimates from contractors (you must order a Design Report before getting a final quote for your Permit Set).

Are you just starting the ADU process? Find out whether you are eligible to build on your property by searching your property.

Services Provided

Our aim is to provide a reliable, high-quality, and cost-effective service that homeowners, as well as professionals, can use to complete their ADU projects faster. We aim to do this with less upfront costs and commitment than the traditional architectural process. In order to do this, we may not be able to provide the same level of customization and detailed project assistance that an architect does. For this reason, our ADU Permit Set service may not be the best fit for every ADU project. By ordering your free ADU Property Report, our team can help you assess if your project would best be managed by Housable or an architect, based on the project complexity, among other factors. We suggest you do your research on the costs of hiring an architect and compare them with the costs of our service to make an educated assessment of the best fit for your needs and your budget.

Our Guarantees

  • Fast & predictable timelines
  • Efficient & ready-to-build ADU design solutions
  • Design flexibility & customization
  • High-accuracy reports, design concepts, and permit set documents
  • Reasonable prices, period
  • Generally accepted construction methods
  • As a general rule, Housable advises on the code, not the aesthetics of your project. Our team provides standard options which meet applicable codes for permitting, but we leave final interior design/style choices to you and your contractor during construction. We can provide multiple design options to choose from, and help with slight customization to ensure the ADU will fit your needs.

    Types of Projects We Serve

    Housable is exclusively focused on ADU projects in The State of California. Our team has experience designing and permitting all types of ADU projects. Our services are divided into two distinct types, Standard Projects and Premium/Custom Projects:

    Standard ADU Projects:

    Projects that are located on a single family property and comply with the general statewide standards for ADUs as outlined below:

  • Single story unit that is a conversion of legal existing space, or new construction attached or detached.
  • The property is located in a single family zone and is currently a single family use.
  • If detached new construction: Must be less than 1,000 square feet.
  • Project is not located in any special zoning overlays such as coastal, fire hazard, sloped, Planned Development area, as determined by our research in the Free ADU Property Report service.
  • Project does not include any construction on the primary home or other unrelated structures.
  • The project is not on a shorter or more restrictive timeline than our standard turnaround times (10-20 business days from order confirmation).
  • Amenities such as porch or deck space does not exceed more than 20% of the floor area unit.

  • Pricing Offered: Your fixed price quote will be based on the designs provided in your ADU Design Report.

    Premium ADU Projects:

    Projects which do not fall within the Standard Projects guidelines above are priced as Premium Projects. These are more complicated, more labor intensive, or riskier projects.

    Examples of “Premium/Custom Projects”:

  • Project designs for multi-family properties
  • Projects which have more than one ADU, eg a JADU + ADU project
  • Projects that are 2 story or added above an existing structure.
  • Projects taller than 16 feet (2 stories, including "lofts")
  • Projects larger than 1,000 sq. ft.
  • Attached, new construction
  • Projects requiring special review due to a hazard or special overlay zone.
  • Alternative construction methods outside of standard CBC 2019 (eg. modular and panelized units)
  • Remodeling of a primary home when in conjunction with an ADU conversion or new construction project.

  • Pricing Offered: Base price + add-on fees for change requests, revisions, and third party services.

    Prerequisites for ordering your ADU Permit Set

    In order to provide fast and cost-effective services, we follow a standard process which includes project evaluation, zoning analysis, and preliminary design. This helps us ensure that we will be able to deliver on the needs and requirements of your specific project, before getting into the details of drafting all of the design documents your city and your contractor will need to approve and build your ADU.

    We must have completed a Property Report and Design Report before moving into your Permit Set. *

    Our team must have evaluated your design and provided a price quote for your ADU Permit Set. **

    Our ADU Permit Set service may not be available for all project styles, customized designs, or geographic areas. ***

    Our ADU Permit Set Drafting Process:

    Getting a project plan set ready for submission requires teamwork between our Drafting Team, and you, the homeowner. Accordingly, your project will likely be more successful if you understand the steps within the drafting process and what information we’ll need from you. Don’t worry, our team is here to help with that, but we do ask that you read what you share and ask questions about items which aren’t clear. This will help move your project forward quickly and with as little back and forth as possible with us, with the city and with your contractor during construction.

    We have phases that allow us to provide high quality, accurate and customized blueprint sets for your ADU project.

  • We take the drafted concept that you choose from your ADU Design Report and begin to draft the project into preliminary construction documents.
  • We conduct a site visit (in-person or remote) to take measurements and verify other relevant on site conditions.
  • After evaluating your site, we finalize the general layout.
  • At the end of each phase, we show you the progress and seek your feedback, you will be able to ask questions and request updates at each phase.
  • Continue reading below for some more technical information regarding the ADU Permit Set specifications.

    Plans Specifications

    The list below indicates the typical sheets that we draft for your ADU project in order to submit them to the city and to source estimates from contractors for your project.

  • A 0.0 - Cover Sheet
  • A 1.0 - Site plan and vicinity map
  • A 2.0 - Architectural plans including floor plans, sections, elevations
  • A 3.0 - Construction spec, assemblies
  • A 4.0 - Architectural schedules
  • A 5.0-7.0 - Mechanical, electrical, plumbing plans
  • A 8.0 - Certificate of Title 24 energy compliance
  • S 1.0-2.0 - Structural plans and details
  • Check Out An Example ADU Permit Set

    Permit Set Drafting Phases:

  • Phase 1: Project setup and preliminary site plan sheet.
  • Phase 2: Floor plan, elevations and general architectural sheets.
  • Phase 3: Mechanical, electrical, plumbing and architectural spec sheets.
  • Phase 4: Project review, site calculations, general notes.
  • Phase 5: Structural, framing, foundation detail sheets.
  • Plan Submittal Preparation: Finalization of plans and preparation for submission to third party title 24 certification and local planning & building departments.

  • Permit Set Payment Terms:

  • Submit 20% order confirmation payment to start the process.
  • Payment of 30% installment will be charged after the completion of Phase 2.
  • Final balance payment 50% is charged after the completion of Phase 5.

  • Our Standard Materials Spec:

    These are our standard practices. Materials and designs may be changed when necessary or upon customer request. ****

  • Structural design according to CBC standard construction practices Interior wall finish: drywall (5/8")
  • Flooring: vinyl flooring planks (low VOC) and tile flooring in bathrooms
  • Roofing: asphalt shingles (or match existing home)
  • Exterior finish: lap siding, vinyl siding (or match existing home)
  • Kitchen cabinetry: we design in standard dimensions that fit most brands (Ikea, Home Depot, Lowe's)
  • Foundation: slab on grade or stem walls with crawl space
  • Windows: Home Depot, Lowe's or Marvin All Ultrex
  • Doors: standard heights (6'8") and widths (30-36")
  • HVAC: Mini-split (Heat/AC ductless)

  • Permitting Process:

    We provide services that prepare your project to submit for a permit and to get bids from contractors, but our services do not end once you've submitted. We address comments and revisions that are returned from the planning and building departments as a part of our service. See the list below for more detail about how it works.

    The plans will be submitted by you or your contractor. All comments, requests for information and revisions returned from the planning office will be updated by our drafting team.

    During the permitting process, if you request design changes, this will require additional fees and may trigger updates to Title 24 and other compliance documents. If custom engineering or details are required by the planning office, we can provide engineer stamps and calculations for reasonable additional fees. Any special reviews, surveys or reports outside of the Standard Plans Spec provided above will be outside our scope, though we can help source these services when necessary.


    * We need to have the information gathered from your ADU Property Report, as well as site plans and ADU concepts created during your ADU Design Report, in order to verify that we can provide you with our ADU Permit Set service and to provide you a complete price quote for this service.

    ** Once our team has opened up your ADU Permit Set and provided a final quotation for this service, you will be able to confirm your order to move forward with this next phase.

    *** Our offering to provide ADU Permit Sets is limited mostly by the desired scope of the project from the customer and in some rare cases by the requirements at the local planning office. In some rare cases, we will not be able to offer the ADU Permit Set service, in which case we will notify you and we will advise of possible alternative next steps for your project.

    **** Please feel free to ask questions about the materials that we specify as a standard in our plans. Most specifications are open to change, but you must know what you would like to change them to, and ideally there is a practical reason for that change. We will not be able to entertain full design consultations as we do not charge appropriately for this type of service.