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All ADU Regulations

Oceanside, California

The City of Oceanside has updated its ADU ordinance to comply with new state laws. Below are the up-to-date requirements for permitting an ADU in Oceanside.
Updated Jun 15, 2022


With a bustling harbor and inspiring views of the Pacific, Oceanside is a great place to build an ADU. Who wouldn't want their own backyard surf shack to house family or rent out for some extra income?


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)
  • 850 sq. ft. for an attached ADU
  • 1,000 sq. ft. for a detached ADU (1,200 if abiding by development standards of underlying zone)
  • 50% of existing dwelling, or none if new building. Exception: A 1 bedroom attached ADU with a Floor Area of <850 square feet is always allowed, and a 2+ bedroom attached ADU with a Floor Area of <1000 square feet is always allowed.

Building height

Attached and detached ADUs have a limit of 16', but there may be other zoning height limits dependent on zone.


  • Minimum setbacks of 4 feet from the side and rear lot lines
  • 6 feet from any existing structures are required for detached ADUs (10 feet in the coastal zone)


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.


While long-term rentals are permitted for ADUs, short-term rentals (e.g. Airbnb for less than 31 days) are not permitted in the City of Oceanside.


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!

Want to learn more about ADU regulations in your area?

Book a free consultation and estimate with a Cottage ADU Expert to find out what’s possible on your property!