DETAILS ABOUT SB 9
What this bill does
SB 9, also known as the California Housing Opportunity and More Efficiency (“HOME”) Act, went into effect on January 1, 2022, and gives existing homeowners the opportunity to:
- Build an additional unit on a single-unit zoned homesite; or
- Subdivide a single-unit zoned homesite into two separate lots
Why was SB 9 created?
The bill is designed to address the state’s housing crisis and create more equitable and inclusive neighborhoods. It also provides homeowners with additional options to maintain and build intergenerational wealth.
How does SB 9 differ from previous zoning?
Prior to SB 9, Single Unit Dwelling (R-1) zones only allowed one primary dwelling unit per homesite, with the exception of duplex corner lots and ADUs. SB 9 also includes amendments from previous housing acts that address the concerns of local homeowners and municipalities.
What are the qualifications?
While allowances vary by city and county, any new housing created as a result of this bill must meet a specific list of qualifications that include:
- Protecting historic districts and preserving the environmental quality of communities
- Preventing existing rental tenants from being displaced
- Compliance with local zoning requirements related to height, floor area ratios, lot coverage etc.
- A property located within an urban area and zoned for single-family use, as designated by the US Census
- Homeowners who split their property must commit to occupying one of the lots as their primary residence for a minimum of three years
What are the limitations?
- Properties located within a historic zone, landmark district, flood zone, fire hazard zone, on prime farmland, or within other environmentally protected areas
- Properties that require the alteration or demolition of any rent-controlled or moderate, low, or very low-income housing
- Any units occupied by a rental tenant within the past three years
- Building more than four units on what is currently a single-family lot
- Small subdivisions and ministerial lot splits on adjacent lots by the same individual to prevent investor speculation
- Requirements and exclusions can vary by city and neighborhood
To learn the limitations and requirements of your specific area, contact us and we can go over the options for your property.
How you can benefit from SB 9
If you are a homeowner, SB 9 opens up a variety of housing development options to optimize your property’s potential, including:
- Building a lot split and two-unit development on your current property for multigenerational living or as a rental
- Subdivide your lot and sell one to pay for a new home on the other lot
- Subdivide your lot and build one duplex and up to two units on each lot for a maximum total of 4 units across both lots*
- Subdivide your lot and build a duplex on one to rent and a new single-family home on the other
* Maximum units allowed vary by area
Discover what’s possible for your property under SB 9
The foregoing description of SB 9 is a summary and is not intended to be complete. Please refer to the full text of SB 9. In addition, the foregoing summary does not constitute legal advice, and we encourage you to consult with your own legal advisor regarding SB 9 and how it may apply to your particular situation.