Granny Flat – the name brings to mind a tired old shack, housing tired old family members – not any more! Yes, Granny Flats are perfect for elderly family members looking to downsize and wanting to stay close to children and grandchildren, but what about a space to give teenagers who are seeking that extra bit of independence, or a retreat for guests to enjoy instead of bunking on a blow up mattress, or even to rent out for additional household income.

Affordable and backyard friendly

Building a dual occupancy solution might offer greater rental returns and increase your overall property value, but if you don’t have the space required or you can’t get council approval, then a Granny Flat is an excellent alternative. It offers a smaller footprint, yet still has strong market appeal to ensure the return on investment is a viable one. So when you think about it, most backyards are just a Granny Flat waiting to happen – which is why the market has seen a boom in this area of the construction.

Granny Flats are very appealing in today’s modern property market because the cost to build is markedly less than a full-sized additional property, making them a very affordable solution as house prices in NSW soar. But beware! There are many building companies selling Granny Flats that are very questionable quality, some even claim to be able to bypass council regulations, and some are advertised at costing less than $10,000.

All of those claims are possible simply because the ‘Granny Flats’ they are selling are little more than a jazzed up tool shed. If you are serious about a quality Granny Flat that will stand the test of time, have architectural design features and include quality fittings and fixtures, upward of $90,000 is a what you should be expecting to pay. It’s not the price of a tool shed, but you would expect it to be more comfortable than one too.

Granny flat design hunter valley maitland newcastle

For a contemporary designer Granny Flat your builder should offer the likes of: a two bedroom dwelling complete with well-appointed kitchen and bathroom, an open plan living area, strong and durable external and internal construction materials, and the finished build should be backed by Home Owner’s Warranty Insurance. Basically it should be as strong and well built as any new home would be. You are simply saving money by building a smaller (yet cleverly designed) home.

Granny Flats are as versatile as they are stylish

Granny Flats are a very practical addition to your existing property as the uses and opportunities they provide are appealing to many homeowners. Adding a Granny Flat to your property not only adds a functional, usable space, as well as value and a potential income – a Granny Flat can add style too.

Many modern Granny Flat designs incorporate what savvy homeowners want from contemporary homes, including smart floor plans and storage solutions to maximise space, as well as the latest building materials to ensure the finished construction is not only visually appealing, but durable also. Basically if you have a modern home you will want a modern Granny Flat to complement the overall style, so shop around. There is a wide range of designer Granny Flats on the market, many of which are affordable and beautiful.

Granny flat design hunter valley maitland newcastle

Just like any build, always hire an expert

Granny Flats take up less space and are a smaller financial investment than other new property builds, such as duplexes and dual occupancies, but a contemporary design and an experienced team of builders is still just as important to make sure you have a finished Granny Flat that is a joy to live in and will stand the test of time.

Jones Homes has partnered with the Granny Flat experts Backspace Living so you can choose from three architecturally designed plans to completely transform your property; The Barossa, The Queenstown, and The Byron.

Granny Flat tax facts

Renting your Granny Flat to people outside of your family is permissible in NSW. If you are thinking of doing this in a different state, please check your State’s rental laws.

For NSW homeowners, it is important to know if you do choose to rent the dwelling out to a person outside of your family, then your Granny Flat may attract Capital Gains Tax when you sell the property.

There are other tax implications when attracting an income through a rental property, so like any investment it is advisable to speak to your financial adviser.

You also might find this article quite useful: The Tax Low Down On Granny Flats, Your Investment Property Magazine

Granny flat design hunter valley maitland newcastle

Does your property suit a Granny Flat?

If you are interested in building a Granny Flat on your property, make sure the builder you select comes out and does a site inspection first. This will ensure that everything is going to run smoothly and that there aren’t any obvious barriers to build. As a quick guide though, here are a few requirements to build a Backspace Living Granny Flat:

  • Minimum block size – 450m2 in total
  • Your property must be zoned residential
  • Total internal floor area is 60m2 or less
  • Property must be at least 12m wide where the Granny Flat will go
  • You must maintain at least a 3m to rear or 0.9m to side gap at boundaries
  • If you have trees over 4m high, the Granny Flat must keep a 3m distance

We’ve teamed up with our friends at Backspace Living to offer a stunning and affordable Granny Flat option. Get in touch today to find out more.

Images courtesy: Backspace Living

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Fyona Coulton

About Fyona Coulton

Over the past three decades our Projects Manager Fyona Coulton has worked with some of Australia’s major builders such as Metricon, Huxley and McDonald Jones. Fyona has been integral in the setup of design studios, display homes and training of sales, administration and colour room staff. Apart from holding formal qualifications in Greensmart® building design, NatHERS energy assessment, Interior Design and Project Management, Fyona has unrivalled experience in the design, planning and building process of custom projects. Working with Jones Homes, Fyona has the autonomy to bring the right people together to collaborate on any given project. She partners with clients to forecast trends in building design and maximise the potential within the council guidelines. Fyona has (to date) brought thousands of new home and unit projects to fruition, creating a network of empowered clientele, quality assured trades and forward thinking industry professionals.