Accessory Dwelling Units


What is an ADU?

An ADU, short for accessory dwelling unit, serves as a secondary housing option on a single-family residential property.

Despite its somewhat institutional-sounding name, "accessory dwelling unit" is the widely accepted term nationwide for this type of housing. To simplify, we often refer to it as ADU.

What distinguishes ADUs is their classification as a housing unit rather than a specific architectural style. While it's natural to envision a concrete representation when introduced to a new design concept like an ADU, their physical forms can vary significantly. Expanding our understanding of ADUs involves embracing this diversity and exploring the common types they come in.

Are You Looking For

Fantastic Small Design Space

A foundation-based tiny home embodies efficiency and minimalist living without the constraints of wheels. It offers decluttering benefits and flexibility in size, like Minimaliste constructing 12-feet-wide homes, unrestricted by highway regulations.


A non-site-built tiny home can be placed on a concrete foundation or screw piles. Screw piles are advantageous due to their minimal site damage and rapid installation, suiting location requirements. This foundation allows easy removal and transportation of the home in the future.


A tiny home on a foundation would likely match the cost of a wheeled tiny home, with similar delivery expenses. Extra costs involve the foundation and necessary installation equipment (like renting a crane). Beyond these advantages, a foundation-based tiny home comes with an exceptional perk: it's recognized as a dwelling by most municipalities. Although municipal bylaws vary widely, many localities are open to approving small manufactured homes on concrete foundations or even screw piles.

Land Leasing

An intriguing aspect of progress in the tiny home movement involves leasing the land where your foundation-based tiny home is situated. With the home's mobility on a foundation, you can lease the "pad" from the landowner while retaining ownership of the home itself.

Why is it easier to get a permit for a Tiny Home on foundation?

Municipalities often raise concerns about tiny homes in three main areas:

Wheels: Is it still a dwelling if it's on a chassis? Or does it fall into the "mobile home" category limited to specific parks designated decades ago?

Size: Does it meet the minimum square footage requirement for a dwelling, reflecting older standards from 1970?

Number of Dwellings: Some areas are considering allowing more units per lot to increase density, seen as a solution to housing shortages.

If the only issue your municipality has with your tiny home is its wheels, some THOW manufacturers now offer models without wheels, preserving all the benefits of a tiny home.

Instead of waiting for potentially lengthy municipal approvals, you could buy your tiny home, live in it, and still engage in petitioning efforts, just in case.

Here are just a few scenarios where ADU's can make a difference!

Grandparents can sell their homes and move into an ADU on their kids' property, making it easier to help with grandchildren and enjoy being near family.

ADUs can provide easy assisted living options for elderly family members who want to maintain their independence while having family close by for support.

Downsizing to an ADU can provide a lower maintenance living space for aging parents or other family members, allowing them to enjoy a simpler, more manageable lifestyle.

By moving into an ADU on their property, parents can allow their adult children to move into the larger home and raise their own families, saving on the costs of home ownership.


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Factory & Discovery Centre


Please take a moment to access and download the zoning guides specifically tailored for the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).

Want more information?

Contact us for more info and for a FREE ADU Suitability Assessment!