Accessory Dwelling Units

The Washington State Department of Commerce recently awarded the City of Lacey a 2021 Smart Communities Award for its pre-approved Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) plans. Watch the video to learn about the program and scroll down for more information.

The City worked with Artisans Group to develop four pre-approved detached ADU designs!  ADUs are gaining in popularity due to their versatility. They can provide space for your family, friends and out of town guests, an affordable rental unit, or just a private studio space in your own backyard. Some people even build one to live in and rent out their house. There are so many possibilities and we’re here to help you through the process, step by step. You can customize your roof style, siding, color, windows, and doors.

We have a studio, one bed-bedroom, and two different two-bedroom options.

View our studio and one-bedroom Style Guide to see some examples of what’s possible! There are many options to complement your existing home. For more information, view our ADU Factsheet.

Where to start:


Contact us to discuss general site feasibility and to view our plans.

Visit us at Lacey City Hall or email and provide your name, address, phone number and a brief description of what you would like to do. A Planner will contact you to do a basic feasibility review.


Review all restrictive covenants with your Home Owner’s Association (HOA), if you have one.

We can help you find your HOA point of contact, if needed.


Review our pre-approved designs.


Determine financing.


Consult with a builder.

Olympia Master Builders is a great resource to find local contractors. A builder determines a more detailed feasibility review and cost estimate.


Apply for permits.

Work with your builder and the City to secure your final permits.

A Complete Permit Application includes:
  • ADU Building Permit Application
  • 2 Copies of a Site Plan
  • 1 Copy of the Pre-Approved plans with your selected options
  • Any additional information based on early conversations with the Department (trees, stormwater, etc)

ADU Community Workshop

On Saturday, February 8, 2020, we held a community workshop to share more information on Accessory Dwelling Units. Our recorded presentation is a great resource. We also have slides available here.