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Can I Build a One or Two Story Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) in Poway?

Build an ADU in The City of Poway

Hey, Brian Freeman from Freeman’s Construction. If you’re building an ADU, or an Accessory Dwelling Unit in Poway, California, you may be wondering, “Can I build a two-story ADU?” Or “Can I build a one-story ADU?” And that’s based off your primary dwelling. 

Maximum Accessory Dwelling Unit Height

So the home that you’re livin’ in right now, if that’s a two-story home, then Poway will allow you to build a two-story ADU. If it’s one-story, then they’ll allow you to build a one-story ADU. The one trick to that is, if it’s two-story or one-story, whatever your existing home is, the maximum, or the height of that, the very tallest point of your home, you cannot exceed that same height on an ADU. So if it’s 22 feet on a two-story, to the ridge, you can’t go more than 22 on the ADU.

Match Your ADU to Your Home

So Poway’s really big on that ADU, fitting into the neighborhood with a country feel. They really want that ADU to match the home. So same materials, kinda similar design. It’s gotta be able to fit into the neighborhood. So it’s very important to them. So the one thing that we were actually able to get through with the City of Poway was that we had a two-story home, but it was a main level home. So you had, you had main level, and then you had a lower level. And they were able to count that as a two-story, even though it wasn’t two stories out of the ground, per se, they counted that as a two story.

Pass Code & Build an ADU That Fits Your Needs

Now we did have a foyer that was on the main level, and it was 22 feet tall. It didn’t have a floor in there, so essentially it was just a one-story, but they are allowing us, because the code says you can go two-story, if it’s a two-story, and it was a two-story, they’re allowing us to go to that 22 foot height that that foyer is. So there is a little bit of wiggle room there as far as the planning department approving, and kinda finagling around the code to get you what you need. They do look at how that’s fitting into the neighborhood. In this particular instance, a two-story would not impact the neighbors negatively. It was a good fit for the neighborhood.

Accessory Dwelling Units in Poway, CA 

So hope that helps, if you have more questions, or need more information on Accessory Dwelling Units, you can go to our website, download our ADU building cost guide. We also have a download that shows some of our nine most popular floor plans. So, all right, thanks for talking with me, and have a great rest of your day.

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Information on What it Costs to Build an Accessory Dwelling Unit!



1. Request a Project Consultation Online or by Phone

2. We Will Meet With You at Your Home or Building Site

3. Establish a Budget for the Project & Start Drawing Plans

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