Since the passing of a new bylaw in 2009, building laneway homes in Vancouver has become an appealing option for progressive Vancouver residents. Experienced custom home builders know the ins and outs of this relatively new and exciting housing opportunity. When you think about it, laneway homes are the ideal choice in a number of situations.
Your grown kids are starting their own families, but haven’t yet got the resources to purchase or build their own home. You want that first grandchild nearby, so why not consider a laneway home to keep the family unit together, while still allowing separate space and privacy?
No room for you to put in a decent-sized in-law suite? Dreaming of a cosy, self-contained guest cottage for visitors? Or simply want to increase your revenue by renting out some terrific living space on a long- or short-term basis? The great ideas just keep coming, and laneway homes can be the perfect solution! Read on to find out if this idea could work for you.
The Facts about Laneway Homes
You may already know that laneway homes are often built at the rear of city lots, where garages are usually situated, but let’s look at some specifics. Here are a few more helpful rules and details to let you determine which Vancouver lots would qualify for laneway homes:
- Definition – Laneway homes are small secondary residences, typically located at the rear of an existing home.
- Minimum lot width – They are available to lots at least 33′ wide, which is a common standard lot dimension in Vancouver.
- Storeys – Laneway homes can be one or one and a half storey configurations, with guidelines to address upper storey massing, privacy, and shadowing.
- Zones – Laneway home structures are available in RS-1 and RS-5 single family areas (which describes over 90% of Vancouver’s lots).
- Size – On a regular sized lot, laneway homes can be up to 500 square feet. On larger lots, the maximum allowed is 750 square feet.
- Parking – Homeowners are required to provide at least one parking spot each for the main and laneway home.
- Now or later – Laneway homes can be added to property while retaining the existing house as is. But laneway homes can also be constructed along with or at the same time as a new house.
- Electric – Take note that a separate electrical meter is required for laneway homes.
Custom Home Builders and Laneway Homes
Vancouver custom home builders on the cutting edge can make the design, planning and building of laneway homes a breeze. They will know how to apply for permits and can facilitate the entire application and approval process. Plus here’s a construction project that won’t inconvenience you by disrupting life in your own home. Just look out the window, and imagine the possibilities of your very own laneway home: a tidy little worthwhile investment.
Doug Kerr is the owner of Kerr Construction in Vancouver. With over 25 years of experience in the renovation and new home construction business, he has developed the Kerr System for designing and building. With this Design/Build system he has helped hundreds of clients achieve their dream homes while also winning multiple national and provincial building and renovations awards. Being a former world-class athlete…” Read more.
Creative Commons Attribution: Permission is granted to repost this article in its entirety with credit to Kerr Construction.Tags: Laneway Home