New York will pay you $125,000 to build a tiny backyard house

A residential neighborhood in Monroe, New York, in the Hudson Valley.
Kelsey Neubauer / Insider

  • New York has set aside $85 million to pay homeowners to build ADUs in their backyards.
  • Grants are made to local governments or nonprofit organizations that distribute the funds.
  • The state awarded $23.4 million to go to Buffalo-area homeowners to New York City.

New York is donating millions to help homeowners build tiny homes, called attached dwelling units, or ADUs, in their backyards.

As of Aug. 15, Empire State has spent $23.4 million doing so, according to New York State Homes and Community Renewal, which is responsible for the funds.

It is part of a package passed within the state budget for the period 2022-2023 called Plus one ADU program, which offers grants of up to $125,000 to homeowners across the state who add an additional housing unit to their property. The state plans to provide a total of $85 million in grants by 2028.

“This comes at a time when we need to investigate every avenue to build every unit we have,” Julie Milstein, president of the New York State Association of Affordable Housing, told Insider.

The program is one way that legislators are trying To alleviate the worsening housing crisisa national issue that makes purchase and Rent a house Too expensive for most Americans.

The United States faces a national housing shortage.
Adamkaz / Getty Images

Through this program and other proposals, Gov. Kathy Hochul plans to address “New York’s housing crisis by increasing the housing supply, which is why initiatives have been put forward to expand housing options – including through the construction of attached housing units,” UNHCR said. refugees. A spokesperson told Insider.

In its first round of funding, HCR said it awarded nine grants ranging from $500,000 to $2.6 million to local governments such as Ulster County and the Town of Amherst, and nonprofit organizations such as Habitat for Humanity of New York City and Westchester.

With these grants, HCR said, dozens of homeowners — from those near Buffalo to New York City — will receive cash to convert their garage into an apartment or build a tiny home in their backyards.

In order to apply, landlords must meet a certain area median income threshold, which varies depending on where in the state they live.

A crane operator lifts a one-bedroom home from a truck to the foundation in San Jose. of the villa

Many cities, in New York and abroad, have relaxed zoning laws to allow homeowners to build additional housing units on their properties.

And in California – where the housing crisis is particularly severe – the state legislature has bypassed local zoning laws to allow all homeowners to build on their properties. A similar bill in New York has not passed through the legislature. Spectrum News reported 1.

However, Milstein sees the grant program as an “innovative” way to give them a head start when building is legal, and “to show that this can be a successful way to allow people the freedom and flexibility to address the crisis in their own homes.”

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