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An Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) is a dwelling unit which provides complete independent living facilities for one or more persons and is located on a lot with another single-family residence (SFR) or multi-family residence (MFR).
A Junior Accessory Dwelling Unit (JADU) is an ADU which is attached to a SFR that does not exceed 500 square feet (sf) and has additional allowances and restrictions as described below.
To determine if your property permits either an ADU and/or a JADU please refer to the ‘Accessory Dwelling Units and Junior Accessory Dwelling Units: General Information’ handout.
SB 9 mandates jurisdictions, like the City of Poway, to ministerially approve a housing SB 9 development containing no more than two (2) residential units on a single lot within a single-family residential zone, excluding certain areas (“units” is inclusive of Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) and Junior Accessory Dwelling Units (JADUs)). ADUs may be permissible after two (2) main single-family residences on a single lot are established. Additionally, the City must ministerially process an Urban Lot Split in accordance with SB 9 and eligible development standards.
To determine if your property permits either a SB 9 development or an Urban Lot Split please refer to the ‘SB 9 Developments & Urban Lot Splits: General Information’ handout.
Go to PowGIS, click on ‘Search’, enter in your address, then click the search icon, then ‘Community Info’, then expand the ‘Planning Information’ data.
Poway Municipal Code Title 15 adopted the following building codes with local amendments:
For some types of residential and small commercial projects, the city’s Building Division now offers a reduced timeline process that can save significant time on a project on building plan checks and permits. These include “Over-The-Counter” permits, 1-day and 2-day permits and 3-day Express Plan Check. See the New Reduced Timeline Process flier (PDF) for details.
All other projects are taken in for plan check and typically are reviewed within 14 calendar days, however, Planning and Engineering Land Development reviews of building permits may take up to 28 calendar days (up to 14 calendar days for Solar, EV charging, misc. electrical/plumbing/mechanical, pool permits, and aluminum patio covers).
No appointments are necessary to submit a project for plan check. The Development Services public counter is located on the 1st floor of City Hall at 13325 Civic Center Drive. Office hours are 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, Fridays 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., closed every other Friday. The Building counter is closed for lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. every day.
Effective June 1, 2022, all building permits will be required to be submitted electronically.
An MDRA is a permit that is required for all new single-family home construction projects, and for additions to an existing single-family home that involve 750 square feet or more of habitable space. The MDRA permit (PDF) is required before you can apply for a building permit. Garage additions are not habitable space and do not require an MDRA. For details on the MDRA process please see the MDRA handout.
Fees will vary with the size and scope of the project. The larger the residence, and the more water and sewer connections, the higher the Building Permit fee. There are building plan check and Building Permit fees. Please contact the Building Division for any estimates.