ADU Design Trends to Elevate Your Rental in 2024

Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) have become a popular solution for adding value and space to properties. In 2024, there are several ADU design trends that you can incorporate to enhance the functionality and appeal of these properties.

The idea for this guide came to me during a recent conversation with a client. She wanted to build a custom ADU in her considerable backyard in LA with the main goal of renting it out. Therefore, she wanted to know what design elements she could incorporate to boost the property’s appeal to renters.

Accordingly, I shared a few key design concepts with her that could help make her space versatile, modern, and aesthetically pleasing. In this guide, I will be talking about those same design trends (and appliances) that you can consider for your ADU project.

1. Sustainability and Eco-Friendly Materials

Sustainability is at the forefront of ADU design trends. As a result, homeowners and builders are opting for eco-friendly materials and energy-efficient appliances to minimize environmental impact.

ADU design trends

In particular, green roofs, solar panels, and sustainable insulation materials are becoming increasingly common. While these additions create an environmentally conscious space, they also add to the modern appeal of the property.

2. Maximizing Natural Light

Incorporating large windows and skylights to maximize natural light makes the space feel larger and more open. But, such options also also help reduce energy consumption, therefore making them functional components. 

This trend towards bright, airy ADUs is particularly a hit among renters looking for a welcoming and vibrant living environment.

3. Smart Home Technology

Smart home features are not only a luxury but also a cornerstone of ADU design. From smart thermostats and lighting to security cameras and voice-activated devices, integrating technology into your ADU can particularly increase its rental appeal.

4. Multipurpose Spaces

With the rise of remote work, ADUs are being designed with multipurpose spaces. For instance, these spaces can serve as a home office during the day and transform into a living area or bedroom at night.

ADU design trends

Therefore, this flexibility is especially attractive to renters who need a functional space that adapts to their lifestyle.

5. Outdoor Living Areas

Creating a seamless flow between indoor and outdoor spaces is also one of the ADU design trends gaining momentum. Designing ADUs with dedicated outdoor areas, like patios or balconies, extends the living space and enhances the rental’s desirability.

In the next section, we will glance at some of the popular appliances that can boost your ADU’s appeal.

Popular ADU Appliances and Their Descriptions

Appliance Description
Compact Washer and Dryer Space-saving solutions for laundry needs.
Dishwasher Drawers Efficient, small-scale dishwashers.
Smart Thermostats Energy-saving, programmable temperature control.
Murphy Beds Space-efficient beds that fold into the wall.
Induction Cooktops Safe, fast-cooking surfaces that save space.

Embracing these ADU design trends in 2024 can significantly enhance your rental property’s appeal, functionality, and sustainability. By especially focusing on what today’s renters value most, you can ensure your ADU stands out in the competitive rental market.


If you are looking for ADU design inspiration, our experts at GoldenADU can certainly help you. In fact, from pre-approval plans to change orders, we help you streamline the process of getting your ADU up and ready.

Contact us today at 213-693-2405 to get your free ADU consultation!


How can I make my ADU eco-friendly?

You can make your ADU especially eco-friendly by using sustainable materials and energy-efficient appliances. In addition, you can consider adding solar panels or a green roof, too.

What smart home features are popular in ADUs?

Smart locks, thermostats, and lighting systems are in especially high demand for their convenience and energy-saving benefits.

Can a small ADU have a functional outdoor space?

A small ADU can certainly have a functional outdoor space. Even a small patio or balcony can significantly enhance the living experience.

Are multipurpose spaces really that important?

Yes, especially for renters who work from home or appreciate flexible living arrangements.

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