New State Law
As of January 1st, 2017 a new California mandated law was passed. Senate Bill 1069 Chapter 270 promotes affordable moderate-income housing. This bill will allow California homeowners to have an easier time building small second dwellings on their property or make your existing residence into a rental property. The law gives owners of most single-family residences the option to construct accessory dwelling units-informally known as back houses, granny flats, or in-law units-as long as they comply with certain guidelines.
This should allow homeowners to be able to start building new accessory dwellings without any trouble. Approved by Governor Jerry Brown, the bill is intended to encourage the development of badly-needed new units of housing in markets where a lack of supply has driven up rental prices at alarming rates.
If you happen to own a single family residence in Laguna Beach, the City requirements would limit the size of the accessory dwellings to 640 square feet. The units would include bedrooms, bathrooms and kitchen. No additional parking spaces are required if the unit is (1) within ½ mile of public transit, or (2) part of the existing primary residence or an existing accessory structure
For those of you who have large lots that could only previously used for open space, you might want to explore the possibility of building a second home on the open space on your property.