ADU Garage Conversions: Turning Parking Spaces into Livable Areas

Converting your garage into an accessory dwelling unit (ADU) is an increasingly popular home improvement project that adds livable space to your property. As housing costs continue rising across San Diego, ADUs present homeowners with opportunities to generate rental income, house family members, or simply gain more room to enjoy.

Transforming garages into ADUs does require proper planning and execution. Professional ADU Construction Services in San Diego by ADU Contractors can handle the required permit applications, designs, and renovations to convert your garage smoothly. This blog provides a detailed overview of garage ADU projects – from costs and benefits to what’s involved in the conversion process when working with ADU builders.

ADU Garage Conversions

Benefits of Garage-to-ADU Conversions

  • Added livable area – Garages provide ready blank canvases to construct fully functional ADUs with kitchens, bathrooms, sleeping areas, etc. This additional living space can be rented out or used as a home office, in-law suite, or man cave.
  • Increased property value – Adding an ADU to your lot boosts property value more than other home remodels. Recent ADUs have sold for 30-40% more than comparable homes without an ADU.
  • Rental income – Constructing a garage ADU to lease out generates steady rental revenue from your own property. Average monthly rents for ADUs range from $1,500 – $2,500+ in San Diego.
  • Flexible usage – You can use your new ADU as extra space for visiting relatives and guests. Over time, repurpose it as a rental, home office, elderly parent suite, or even primary residence.

What’s Involved in the Garage Conversion Process

Converting a garage into a dwelling unit is no small project. Proper planning and work with experienced ADU contractors prevents headaches. Key steps when transforming your garage into an ADU include:


  • Plan submission and approval
  • Utility connections
  • Parking space replacement (if required)


  • Floorplan sketch and final blueprints
  • layout with living necessities
  • California Building Code compliance


  • Demolition/Interior framing
  • Rough electrical, plumbing, HVAC
  • Drywall, paint, trim carpentry
  • Cabinetry, appliances, fixtures
  • Hardscaping, landscaping


  • Final inspections
  • Certificate of Occupancy

Utilizing a licensed ADU contractor in San Diego simplifies this process. Reputable ADU builders have experience managing necessary permits, planning ADU layouts that maximize space, and completing full garage conversions.

Cost to Convert Garage into ADU

Converting a garage into an ADU represents a major home remodel. Your total investment varies based on factors like:

  • ADU size
  • Level of customization
  • Construction materials
  • Permitting expenses
  • Electrical/plumbing complexity

Typical garage ADU conversion costs range from $150 – $350 per Sq. Ft, including necessary permitting, designs, utility connections, and full construction.

ADU SizeAverage Cost Range
400 Sq. Ft$60,000 – $140,000
600 Sq. Ft$90,000 – $210,000
800+ Sq. Ft$120,000 – $280,000+

With average monthly ADU rental rates from $1,500 – $2,500, you can expect to recoup garage conversion costs within 5-10 years.

Working with ADU Building Professionals

Attempting an ADU garage conversion without construction experience risks delays, safety hazards, or failing inspections.We recommend collaborating with a top-rated ADU contractor in San Diego like ADU Contractors. Their ADU building experts:

  • Handle all permitting needs
  • Create custom ADU designs that maximize your space
  • Use efficient construction techniques to limit costs and durations
  • Ensure all projects pass final municipal inspections

This level of end-to-end service guarantees your garage ADU conversion goes smoothly from permits to move-in.

Converting your garage into a living ADU unlocks extra usable space and income potential from your property. Despite higher upfront costs, integrating an ADU proves well worth the investment over time. Let ADU Contractors support your garage ADU project.