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Los Angeles Building and Safety

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  • For the purpose of assessing a per-unit impact fee to an ADU that is 750 square feet or larger on a Lot with an existing single-family dwelling, how is the square footage of the single-family dwelling determined?
    Los Angeles County Tax Assessor’s records may be used to establish the square footage of the single-family dwelling for the purpose of calculating the required impact fee for the ADU.
  • What general development standards from LAMC Section 12.22 A.33(c) apply to Movable Tiny Houses (MTHs)?
    LAMC 12.22 A.33(b)(3) states that a MTH shall be approved if in compliance with all of the provisions in Paragraph (c), except for those provisions that apply solely to buildings and structures (as well as all of the provisions in Paragraph (f)). This is because MTHs are not considered “structures” under the Zoning Code or Building Code. The following standards in LAMC 12.22 A.33(c) do not apply to MTHs, as they apply solely to buildings and structures (LADBS may determine that other standards do not apply to MTHs): Building Code regulations (LAMC Section 12.22 A.33(c)(9)) Fire sprinkler requirements (LAMC Section 12.22 A.33(c)(10))
  • May an ADU be created on a Lot that is a substandard Lot (for instance, due to an illegal Lot split in the past)?
    State law allows a local ADU ordinance to establish certain ADU development standards. However, these standards shall not include minimum lot size (see GC Section 65852.2(a)(1)(B)(i)). Therefore, a minimum Lot size requirement for a given zone classification shall not be the basis of a denial of a new ADU.
  • What is living area as referenced in LAMC Section 12.22 A.33(c)(8)?
    Living area is defined in state ADU law as “the interior habitable area of a dwelling unit, including basements and attics, but does not include a garage or any accessory structure.”
  • Can there be other residential uses on the Lot besides the proposed or existing dwelling mentioned in LAMC 12.22 A.33(c)(6)?
    Yes, the Lot may contain any other residential use(s), in addition to the non-residential uses and accessory residential uses mentioned in 12.22 A.33(c)(6)
  • What regulations apply when an existing ADU or JADU is later proposed to be converted to another use?
    The proposed conversion will be subject to all zoning code and fire sprinkler regulations in place at the time of the proposed change of use. If the ADU or JADU was constructed within an existing building, non-conforming rights from the building and use that existed prior to the ADU or JADU may be considered at the discretion of LADBS
  • If a portion of a single-family dwelling is converted into a JADU, do I need a separate address for the JADU?
    Public Works - Bureau of Engineering will determine if the JADU requires a new address.
  • For the purposes of assessing a per-unit impact fee to an ADU that is 750 square feet or larger on a Lot with a multifamily dwelling structure, how is the square footage of the primary residence determined?
    The fee must be proportional to the average size of all dwelling units on the Lot. Floor plans showing the sizes of all units may be required to make this determination. An applicant may choose to pay the full fee in lieu of providing these plans.
  • What is a single-family and multifamily dwelling or use?
    A single-family dwelling or use means a Dwelling, One-Family. A multifamily dwelling or use means any Structure with more than one Dwelling Unit or Guest Room, and used for long-term dwelling. Transient short-term rental uses established or used for less than 30 days are not considered dwellings for the purpose of implementing LAMC 12.22 A.33. Areas zoned for these uses means zones in which these uses are a permitted use in the respective zone classification.
  • What is the minimum size of an efficiency unit as referenced in LAMC Section 12.22 A.33(c)(1)(ii), and what is the applicability of this provision?
    The minimum size of an efficiency unit is 220 square feet, plus a code compliant closet and bathroom; however, the Ordinance does not specify any minimum square footage requirements for an ADU or JADU, except for Movable Tiny Houses (MTHs). This provision refers to any other current or future zoning ordinances that would prohibit an efficiency unit ADU
  • If a garage is converted into a Junior Accessory Dwelling Unit (JADU), do you need to provide replacement parking?
    Replacement parking is not required for a garage converted into a JADU.
  • How does vesting apply to projects that submitted prior to the ADU Ordinance?
    Projects that have paid a plan check fee and had their plans accepted by LADBS prior to the effective date of the ADU Ordinance (December 19, 2019) are provided a vested right to proceed with its development in compliance with the development rules and regulations in force on the date that the plan check fee was paid. Applicants that wish for their projects to take advantage of new provisions in the ADU Ordinance (and state law) will need to file a supplemental permit application, which will void the vesting rights under the prior development rules and subject the project to the new ADU Ordinance and any other new regulations.
  • Determination of when a garage, carport, or covered parking structure is demolished in conjunction with the construction of an ADU or JADU for the purposes of determining when no parking is required for an ADU (LAMC Section 12.22 A.33(c)(12)(iii)).
    For the purpose of this provision, in conjunction means when a building permit application to remove covered parking and a building permit application for the construction of an ADU on the same Lot are submitted at the same time, or where one building permit application is submitted while the other building permit application or building permit is still open and valid.
  • Determination of when requirements for a passageway or space between buildings are considered in conjunction with the construction of an ADU (LAMC Section 12.22 A.33(c)(7)).
    The defined passageway and space between buildings regulation does not apply to the ADU or any residential building on the same Lot during the approval or construction of an ADU, whether through a zoning review, building permit plan check or inspection. In the event that new (non-ADU) structures or additions to structures are constructed on the site subsequent to the creation of the ADU, any applicable regulations pertaining to passageways or space between buildings would apply to the new structure or addition, consistent with the Zoning Code standards in place at the time that the plan check fee for the structure or addition is paid in accordance with LAMC 12.26 A.3.
  • Can a JADU exceed 50% of the existing single-family dwelling floor area, as long as it does not exceed 500 sf?
  • For an existing Accessory Living Quarters with an attached carport or garage, can you convert the carport or garage into an ADU?
  • How is walking distance calculated per LAMC Section 12.22.A 33(c)(12)(i)(a)?
    Walking distance is measured by the shortest distance that can be traveled by walking on public streets and sidewalks from a transit stop to the closest point on the subject Lot, as determined by generally available mapping systems, such as Google Maps.
  • How are square footage, square-feet and size calculated?
    Square footage, square-feet and size are used in the ADU Ordinance to refer to various direct ADU size regulations (such as the 1,200 square foot limitation). These terms refer to the definition of Floor Area in LAMC 12.03, but does not include the definition of Residential Floor Area (RFA), nor does it include any non-conditioned spaces such as porches, patios or breezeways with solid or lattice roofs. Physically connected spaces that are conditioned but do not have an interior connection to the ADU are also not counted as ADU square footage. This definition does not apply to a Movable Tiny House (MTH), which is subject to distinct size provisions as described in the definition of a MTH. Indirect limits on ADU size through other zoning provisions such as Floor Area Ratio (including RFA in the R1, RE, RS and RA zones) or lot coverage may apply separately which may further limit allowable ADU square footage. Refer to LAMC 12.22 A.33(b) for more information on applicable development standards.
  • Does the density calculation described in LAMC Section 12.22 A.33(h)(2) only apply to dwelling unit calculations?
    No, this provision applies if either additional dwelling units or guest rooms are added to a lot after the creation of the ADU or JADU.
  • What is a mixed-use zone per Paragraph (g) of LAMC Section 12.22 A.33?
    Mixed-use zone refers to any zone classification that allows for both residential and nonresidential uses on the same Lot.
  • Does the presence of a JADU change the designation of a One-Family Dwelling Unit? How is a JADU reported?
    A JADU shall be identified as a JADU on Building Permits, Certificate of Occupancy and other pertinent City records. The addition of a JADU changes the designation of the One-Family Dwelling to a One-Family Dwelling and JADU. For purposes of any fire or life protection ordinance or regulation, a JADU shall not be considered a separate or new dwelling unit per GC 65852.22(d). However, JADUs may be counted as housing units in reports to the Department of Finance as well as for the Regional Housing Needs Assessment (RHNA) and other housing unit reporting.
  • How is height measured for an ADU?
    Height of an ADU is generally measured as any other structure would be measured under the LAMC, given the governing height limit standards in the applicable zone, Height District, Hillside Area, Specific Plan area, or other Overlay. For the purposes of applying the 16 feet maximum height standard as required by state law (referenced in LAMC Section 12.22 A.33(c)(1)(iii), (g)(1), and GC Section 65852.2(e)(1)(D)), height shall be measured according to the standard Zoning Code definition of Height of Building or Structure in LAMC Section 12.03.
  • Can an ADU request a Zone Variance from the provisions in 12.22 A.33?
    No, the LAMC does not permit deviations from development standards provided in LAMC 12.22 A.33 (Exceptions) because these provisions are already exceptions from the Code; however, an ADU may request the appropriate entitlement(s) to deviate from development standards provided in other sections of the Code that are not specifically defined in LAMC 12.22 A.33.
  • What is car share as referenced in LAMC Section 12.22 A.33(c)(12)(i)(b)?
    Car share means a vehicle rental program designed for people to rent vehicles for short periods of time, such as a few hours, pay only for their usage, and access the car at any hour, not just during business hours. The vehicles may be commercially or personally owned. Commercial car share companies generally offer a fleet of vehicles which may be picked up and returned to a designated parking spot, or are picked up and returned to non-designated parking spots. Personal vehicle sharing (peer-to-peer car sharing) allows private car owners to make their vehicles available for rental. Some car share companies operating in Los Angeles include, but are not limited to: BlueLA, Zipcar, Ryde, Waive, Getaround, Transfr, PiTcarz, Maeve, Turo, Envoy, and Animo. For the purposes of determining the applicability of this parking exemption, pick-up and drop-off locations are provided by the ADU applicant and verified online. If LADBS staff has questions on information an applicant supplies to demonstrate a car share program or location, they should consult with the Department of Transportation.
  • When is automobile parking required for an ADU which is part of the proposed or existing primary residency or an accessory structure (LAMC Section 12.22 A.33(c)(12)(i)d)?
    Automobile parking is not required for ADUs created within an existing or proposed main home or an existing accessory structure. ADU parking may be required if the ADU exceeds the existing square footage of an existing main home (primary residence) or accessory structure, as well as for a newly constructed detached ADU. Other parking waivers in LAMC Section 12.22 A.33(c)(12)(i) may also apply.
  • What is a dwelling, primary dwelling, or primary residence?
    For the purpose of implementing LAMC 12.22 A.33, dwelling, primary dwelling, or primary residence mean any single-family or multifamily dwelling.
  • What is an FAQ section?
    General questions and answers about ADUs. All the information is directly from Los Angeles Building and Safety
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