The beautiful city of Los Altos is home to approximately 30,000 residents. Deciding to remodel your Los Altos home is an important and exciting decision. The city is known for its minimum lot size and square footage requirements as well as its green building initiatives, which have a significant impact on the residential construction process.
If you are thinking of embarking on a home renovation project in Los Altos, you will need to abide by the city’s legislative and building requirements as mandated by the Building Division. It is essential to hire experienced, professional home builders in Los Altos who can perform quality work while also meeting these unique compliance guidelines. Valley Home Builders is an award-winning firm that has helped many Los Altos homeowners with:
Are you among the many homeowners in the Los Altos area who need more space but do not want to move from the home that you are in? Valley Home Builders specializes in the design and construction of Accessory Dwelling Units that can provide a convenient, cost-effective housing solution. Because we are a design and build firm, our team will see your project from conceptualization to completion — unlike other firms that will outsource your building to another company.
An ADU can be an attachment to an existing home or a stand-alone structure that serves as a private residence, guest house, home office, studio or whatever else you desire. We will create a custom ADU that meets your unique lifestyle or functional needs, granting you an extra living space to use how you see fit.
Basement conversion: A basement conversion ADU is a convenient option that allows you to connect to your home’s existing utilities. If you would like to expand your basement, you may want to convert it to a studio, office or additional living space.
Attached ADU expansion: An attached ADU is an expansion of the main house. Attached ADUs are typically positioned on the back or side of your property. Like a basement conversion, this configuration uses your existing plumbing and electrical systems.
Garage conversion: A garage ADU takes advantage of the unused space on your property and offers more privacy than a basement conversion. Our team of ADU builders can make an extra entertainment space or office by constructing an additional living space on top of your garage.
Separate unit: Often seen as a miniature guest house, a detached ADU is ideal for accommodating family members. A separate Accessory Dwelling Unit gives you a private space to entertain loved ones, relax or work.
ADU Zoning and Regulations in Los Altos, California
A lot with an existing single-family building may add one accessory dwelling.
Types of ADUs
Los Altos’ regulations state that a residential lot may have two types of accessory buildings — an accessory dwelling unit (ADU) or a junior accessory dwelling unit (JADU).
A JADU describes a structure like an ADU but smaller. Both ADUs and JADUs units may be attached to the house or detached.
There may be one of each type on a single lot if the ADU is detached from the primary residence. The detached ADU must be under 16 feet tall and 850 square feet.
Under Los Altos’ code, the maximum size for an accessory dwelling unit varies with the type.
A JADU can be any size from 150 to 500 square feet.
ADUs’ maximum size limits depend on the type:
Detached ADU: 1,200 square feet
Detached ADU on a lot containing a JADU: 800 square feet
Attached ADU: Half of the primary dwelling’s square footage but no greater than 1,200 square feet
An ADU’s height limit depends on whether it is attached or detached. Detached dwellings may reach 16 feet high. An attached ADU may be the same height as the primary building.
Note that all buildings in Los Altos must comply with local daylight-plane provisions. The daylight plane begins 8 feet over the property line, then slopes inward at a 6:12 roof grade. Officials may not approve a 16-foot structure if it is close to your property line.
Los Altos does not enforce lot size regulations for these constructions so long as all lot coverage and parking requirements are met.
The minimum rear and side setbacks are 4 feet, but Los Altos officials encourage 10 feet. They also request a land survey map submitted with the application sheet if the ADU will be less than 5 feet from a property line.
Note that ADU proposals that voluntarily include 10-foot setbacks are exempt from daylight plane ordinances.
Any new accessory dwelling unit must include one 9-foot-by-18-foot uncovered parking space.
Owner occupancy is not required for ADUs and JADUs in Los Altos. However, all rentals must be long-term agreements.
These items describe Los Altos’ most recent ADU regulations. State laws regarding zoning and permitting requirements are subject to change. We update our website frequently to display current data. Please get in touch to discuss changes to Los Altos’ ADU zoning requirements and regulations.
For more information on ADU requirements in Los Altos or to ask a specific question, please contact us online today.
Los Altos Home Renovation Projects and Additions
If you would like to make room for family members and guests or add aesthetic appeal to your residential exterior, a home addition may be a good choice for you. Valley Home Builders can satisfy your vision for a home addition by adding to your existing structure.
We can help you decide on which of the following home renovation projects are right for you:
Room additions and bump-outs: While a bump-out adds a little extra square footage to an existing room, a room addition is an entirely new room added to your home. Both of these renovation options will help you add some extra space to your residence.
Home expansions: A home expansion will help you change certain aspects of your home’s layout or add more space for entertaining guests and family members. This renovation involves adding several rooms — such as a master bedroom, guest bedroom, dining room, living room and bathroom — to your current living space.
Sunrooms: Sunrooms often use thermal-resistant glass and aluminum framing to allow you to stay comfortable inside while enjoying the outdoors. You can use this space as a workout studio, entertainment area or office to suit your lifestyle needs.
Second-story additions: A second-story addition helps you enhance the amount of space you have on your whole property while preserving your landscaping. Adding a floor to your home allows you more living space without the need to extend your existing foundation.
Patio or deck remodeling: When you design a deck or patio optimally, it can become an exterior room on your property. Consider upgrading your outdoor area with a kitchen or fireplace to host get-togethers with friends and family.
We Eliminate the Home Remodeling Hassles
At Valley Home Builders, we strive to make every home renovation project as easy and stress-free as possible. Our three-step sales system is designed to ensure transparency during every aspect of the design and development phase.
If you have ever tried to navigate the permit acquisition process in Los Altos, then you understand how challenging and time-consuming it can be. As a full-service remodeling company, we take care of this process for you, removing the burden from your shoulders.
We want you to sit back, relax and envision what your renovation will look like when it is done!
Award-Winning Home Builders in Los Altos
We are proud of our long history of excellence. Our custom remodeling and design work has received recognition from the National Association of the Remodeling Industry, and we have also earned a spot on Remodeling magazine’s prestigious Top 50 Building Contractors list. When you choose us, you will work with a home renovation company you can trust to deliver results that exceed your expectations.
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