Andrew Wimer
Andrew Wimer · April 3, 2023

ARLINGTON, Va.—The Anne Arundel County Council will this evening again consider a proposal that would permit residents to create accessory dwelling units (ADUs), also known as mother-in-law suites. The ordinance would allow single family homeowners to convert existing space or add a small detached structure to accommodate additional residents.

In continued support of the measure, Institute for Justice Senior Attorney Erica Smith expanded on previous comments submitted to the council. The following are excerpts from her written testimony:

“In our experience, ADU owners who benefit the most from renting out ADUs are vulnerable populations that would otherwise struggle to pay their mortgage, such as first-time home buyers, minorities, single moms, senior citizens, disabled persons, military members who have been deployed, and front-line workers such as nurses and school teachers.

“While the ordinance will create more housing opportunities, we expect it will do so at a slow and steady pace; it will not result in a dramatic and worrying increase in construction in residential neighborhoods. We have already observed this in the states that have passed state-wide ADU measures, such as California, Oregon, Utah, and Maine, as well as in cities that have recently legalized ADUs, such as Arlington and Alexandria, Virginia.”