Richmond to adopt coach housing soon!
Richmond is considering allowing more alternate forms of housing in existing single-family neighbourhoods – a small dwelling built in the backyard space of a single-family home. Richmond currently allows coach houses to be built along arterial roads, or in the case of a in a new subdivision in East Richmond’s Hamilton neighborhood upon rezoning approval.
Richmond city now allows secondary suites in single-family neighbourhoods, loosening restrictions inside residential subdivisions could allow homeowners to have up to three homes on one single-family lot.
Richmond Neighborhoods ear-marked for coach houses
In recent months, city planners pitched the idea of opening up neighbourhoods to coach houses, or granny flats even if the lots don’t front arterial roads. Such dwellings are detached, self-contained homes in the backyard of a single-family home, with or without lane access.
Once adopted as a new official community plan in 2012, this type of housing will multiple in Richmond. As such homes are detached and self-contained, it can be rented out at a higher rate between $800 to $1,000. This is much more than a typical suite, and comparable to a new condo (typically a new condo costs over $300,000) at a much lower cost.
Based on public feedback, city planners have focused on opening the Burkeville (Sea Island), Edgemere (near Matthew McNair Secondary) and Richmond Gardens (west of Minoru Park) neighbourhoods to the new housing types. Burkeville and Edgemere are likely candidates for coach houses and granny flats – developers would be required to go through a formal rezoning process.
Laneway Houses in Vancouver
In Vancouver, laneway houses are being built after the city adopted the “Laneway Housing Regulations and Guidelines” on July 28, 2009. Bryn Davidson of LaneFab Design completed the first one under new regulations a year ago. A 710 sq ft backyard house whose owners expected to net $1,700 per month in rent. According to LaneFab, a custom lane home costs $180,000 to $250,000. The cost-benefit of Laneway housing is attractive – view info here. Home owners are looking for cheaper alternatives. Some builders that I know are happy to quote $150 to $175 per sq ft to undertake a laneway housing contract.