You may think that accessory dwelling units already had enough names…. ADU, granny flat, in-law suite, casita, the list goes on… 

So what the heck is a JADU? 

We’re here to help!

Maxable has educated thousands of homeowners about ADUs and JADUs. We match you with designers and builders ideal for your project, and research your property so you can make educated decisions every step of the way.

Since the adoption of Assembly Bill No. 68 and Assembly Bill No. 881, California single-family homeowners have been allowed to add both one ADU and one JADU to their property. That’s a great opportunity, but it has also led to some confusion. 

What is a JADU?

  • Size – 500 sq. ft. max.
  • 150 sq. ft. extra for ingress and egress – only if your jurisdiction specifically allows it. According to CA state law, that extra 150 square feet applies to ADUs only. 
  • Location – Must be within a proposed or existing single-family dwelling or accessory structure, such as a garage. (According to California Department of Housing & Community Development the accessory structure, like a garage, must be attached to the home to qualify)
  • Separate Entry – Exterior access (a separate entrance for the JADU) is required from the proposed or existing single-family dwelling.
  • Interior entry to the primary house – not required.
  • Parking – No parking required for a JADU, except if you convert your attached garage, in which case the parking must be replaced. 
  • Bathroom – May have a separate bathroom or shared with the single-family dwelling.
  • Kitchen – Must meet “Efficiency Kitchen” requirements:
    • A food preparation counter and storage cabinets that are of reasonable size in relation to the size of the JADU
    • Cooking facilities with appliances–240-volt outlets are permitted
    • No restriction on maximum waste-line diameter


what is a JADU

A JADU is a legally rentable unit

You can put an ADU and a JADU on the property and rent them both out. However, according to Section 65852.22. Section A, you’ll see that owner-occupancy is required for the JADU

You may be thinking — well, wait! Owner Occupancy was banned from 2020-2025 under the new ADU laws. You’d be correct, except it only applies to ADUs, not JADUs.

Here’s where the owner-occupancy clause is broken out Section 65852.22

“(2) [JADUs] Require owner-occupancy in the single-family residence in which the junior accessory dwelling unit will be permitted. The owner may reside in either the remaining portion of the structure or the newly created junior accessory dwelling unit. Owner-occupancy shall not be required if the owner is another governmental agency, land trust, or housing organization.” 

That section goes on to talk about deed restriction, which will also apply to your ADU. 

(3) Require the recordation of a deed restriction, which shall run with the land, shall be filed with the permitting agency, and shall include both of the following:

(A) A prohibition on the sale of the junior accessory dwelling unit separate from the sale of the single-family residence, including a statement that the deed restriction may be enforced against future purchasers.

(B) A restriction on the size and attributes of the junior accessory dwelling unit that conforms with this section.

Replacement Parking is Required for JADUs

No jurisdiction can require replacement parking for a garage conversion to an ADU, but a JADU doesn’t get those same perks. If converting a garage to a JADU, the parking must be replaced. However, if you’re converting space within the home, JADUs are exempt from all parking requirements!

Want more details about JADUs? Watch our JADU video.

Plan, hire, and manage your ADU project with Maxable.

At Maxable, we believe that building an ADU should be fun and exciting. You shouldn’t have to be the one to deal with confusing obstacles like permitting snafus or ever-changing regulations. We’ll be by your side every step of the way and connect you to experienced designers and general contractors in your area to make sure your project goes as smoothly as possible.

Leave the headaches to us! Check your address and see what Maxable can do for your home during a free ADU Planning Call.