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All ADU Regulations

Carlsbad, CA

The City of Carlsbad has updated its ADU ordinance to comply with new state laws. Below are the up-to-date requirements for permitting an ADU in Carlsbad.

Updated June 2022

Table of Contents

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Table of Contents

CarlsbadZoningNumber of unitsBuilding sizeBuilding heightSetbacksParkingWatch-outs

Carlsbad

Home to Legoland California and nestled along the Pacific Ocean, Carlsbad is an ideal place to build an ADU as a companion to a sunny California abode.

Zoning

All properties zoned for single family and multifamily use may be eligible to build ADUs.

Number of units

Lots zoned for single family use that have an existing dwelling are permitted to add 1 ADU and 1 Junior ADU (JADU).

Building size

Maximum square footage is determined by your ADU type:

  • 500 sq. ft. for a Junior ADU (JADU)
  • 1,200 sq. ft. for a detached ADU (unless limited by local zoning rules)
  • 50% of existing dwelling, or none if new building. Exception: This will not preclude a single-family residential lot from building an 800 sq. Ft. ADU.

Building height

1 floor maximum unless attached or over a garage.

Setbacks

Minimum setbacks of 4 feet from the side and rear lot lines, as well as 10 feet from any existing structures are required for detached ADUs.

Parking

No parking requirements if any of the following true:

  • The accessory dwelling unit is located within one-half mile walking distance of public transit
  • The accessory dwelling unit is located within an architecturally and historically significant historic district.
  • The accessory dwelling unit is part of the proposed or existing primary residence or an accessory structure.
  • When on-street parking permits are required but not offered to the occupant of the accessory dwelling unit.
  • When there is a car share vehicle located within one block of the accessory dwelling unit.

Watch-outs

Do you have a utility easement over your property? Are you in the coastal zone? Reach out to us and we’ll help you build a custom ADU to fit your unique property characteristics and local regulations!

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