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ProJo: R.I. allowance for ‘in-law’ units is little known

On Jan. 1, 2017, a change in state law went into effect, allowing owner-occupants of single-family homes to build these units by right for senior relatives ages 62 or older. Previously they were allowed by right only for disabled family members.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — They’re sometimes known as “in-law apartments” or “granny flats.” But Rhode Island law gives them a more formal name: accessory dwelling units.

On Jan. 1, 2017, a change in state law went into effect, allowing owner-occupants of single-family homes to build these units by right for senior relatives ages 62 or older. Previously they were allowed by right only for disabled family members.

Since the law changed, some residents have made inquiries about accessory dwelling units, according to local building and zoning officials. But only a small number have apparently gone ahead with plans to build them.

The state law requires that when ADUs are added at a house, “the appearance of the structure shall remain that of a single-family residence and there shall be an internal means of egress between the principal unit and the accessory family dwelling unit.”

To view the complete article, visit Providence Journal 

Courtesy of Providence Journal