ADU Incentive Program

It is the City of Del Mar’s goal to inspire a more diverse, sustainable, and balanced community through implementation of strategies and programs that will result in economically and socially diversified housing choices that preserve and enhance the special character of Del Mar.

In May 2018, the City of Del Mar adopted a Pilot Program to encourage development of ADUs and JrADUs that are dedicated as affordable units and made available for rent to low income households for at least 30 years.  In exchange for participation, property owners are granted a floor area bonus (500 square feet) as an incentive.  

In May 2022, the City Council adopted a second extension of the Program, which is in effect through May 2024 unless further extended by the City Council. Review the May 16, 2022 Report to City Council (PDF) for additional information.

What are ADUs and JrADUs?  

View the City’s ADU web page for more information.

How does the ADU Incentive Program work?

  • Review the May 18, 2020 Report to City Council - program details are available here (PDF)
  • Contract Required for Participation - a template contract is available here (PDF)
  • If your property does not have an existing permit for the ADU or JrADU, a Permit Application is required for approval to create an ADU or JrADU – see details below on how to apply

How to Apply

State law requires a streamlined, ministerial review process for proposed ADUs and JrADUs that exempts all such applications that meet each of the specified objective review standards from discretionary permit review, including design review.

Unless the ADU or JrADU to be dedicated as an affordable unit already has an ADU permit, Applicants for the ADU Incentive Program will need to fill out an ADU Application Packet (Fillable PDF), pay associated fees (PDF), and submit development plan sets. Submitted plans that meet the requirements in Del Mar Municipal Code Section 30.91 will be approved within 60 days of a complete application submittal. If the ADU or JrADU permit application is processed at the same time as a permit application for a new primary dwelling unit on the lot, the City may delay acting on the ADU or JrADU application until the City acts on the permit application for the primary dwelling unit.

Del Mar is Actively Developing Strategies to Create New Affordable Housing

The ADU Incentive Program relates to the City’s Housing Element Update (HEU) in process. As part of the HEU, the City is collecting information on housing resources and developing planning strategies to meet its projected housing needs through the year 2029. An equitable community planning based approach is being applied to identify a variety of strategies that can help generate sufficient capacity to accommodate at least 163 additional housing units of varying affordability levels (as assigned per State housing law) in locations throughout the community.

Contact the Del Mar Planning & Community Development Department to learn more:

City of Del Mar City Hall
1050 Camino del Mar
Del Mar, CA 92014