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Rancho Santa Margarita ADUs

Everything about building Accessory Dwelling Units in Rancho Santa Margarita, CA

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Rancho Santa Margarita ADU Guidelines Last Updated 08/14/21

The city government of Rancho Santa Margarita will approve ADUs under California's statewide mandated regulations.
The California Building Code (CBC) 2019 is adopted.

Number of ADUs allowed:

According to state law, all single-family homes are allowed at least one Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU). Additionally, single-family lots which are owner-occupied may create one Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) and one Junior Accessory Dwelling Unit (JADU). Also, multi-family lots may now add one ADU per every four existing residential units, so long as they were legally established.

Types of ADUs allowed:

Detached ADU, Attached ADU, Junior ADU are approved. ADUs may be new construction or converted from existing space. JADUs must be converted from existing space.

Lot size:

Single family and multi-family residential parcels will not be subject to the minimum lot size of the underlying zoning district or by ordinance for ADU projects. ~ AB68 & AB881 Update

ADU size:

Single-family and multi-family Properties will be permitted to create up to 850 sq.ft. for a one bed ADU or up to 1,000 sq.ft. for a two bed ADU, regardless of the underlying zoning standards of the property. A JADU up to 500 sq.ft. is permitted. The minimum size of any living unit (including ADUs and JADUs) is 150 sq.ft. according to California Residential Code. ~ AB68 & AB881 Update

Setbacks:

Setbacks for a detached new construction Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) shall be no more than 4 ft from the rear and side lot lines. No setbacks shall be required for Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU)s and Junior Accessory Dwelling Units converted from legally eastablished existing space. Attached new construction Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU)s and conversions from existing space to be expanded must comply with the setbacks of the underlying zone. ~ AB68 & AB881 Update

Parking:

Replacement parking shall not apply to lots which convert an existing garage to an ADU or Junior Accessort Dwelling Unit (JADU). ~ According To AB68

Fire Safety:

Accessory dwelling units shall not be required to provide fire sprinklers unless they are also required for the primary dwelling. ~ State Standards

Shape, materials and style:

Specific design styles and restrictions are not specified under State Standards. Passageways shall not be required in conjunction with the construction of an accessory dwelling unit. ~ State Standards

Height:

The maximum height of an ADU is not specified in the state standards. If ADU maximum height is not established locally, the height limitations of the underlying zone shall apply. ~ State Standards

Design review:

The municipality shall provide a ministerial review process which is not based on a discretionary approval for an ADU. The process shall take no less than 120 days. Valid applications submitted for ADUs, if not approved or denied within 120 days from submission, shall be considered approved. ~ State Standards

Number of Bedrooms:

No maximum number of bedrooms is established other than that implied by the maximum size of an ADU allowed. ~ State Standards

Ownership:

Owner-occupancy will not be required for new Accessory Dwelling Units (conversion and new construction) built between 2020 and 2025. ~ According To SB13

Utility connections:

Connection and utility fees shall be reasonable, and shall not be disproportionately higher than those to develop primary dwellings, so as not to deter the development of ADUs. If a private sewage disposal system is used, such as a septic system, review and approval by a local health officer may be required. ~ State Standards

Allowed Zones:

*** Beginning in 2020, according to state law, all residential zoning districts, including single-family and multi-family, are allowed to build Accessory Dwelling Units. ***

Residential Building Code:

The California Building Code (CBC) 2019 is adopted.

Read Rancho Santa Margarita Housing Market Update

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