Granny flats, or titan houses, are typically defined as a secondary dwelling on the one property that is used as self-contained accommodation. While a granny flat is traditionally seen as a way to add more space to your home for relatives to live in, a granny flat can also be used as an investment that adds significant value to your property. The benefits of building a granny flat are significant, from improving the revenue you make through rental income to enhancing the property’s overall value.
Granny flat uses
Taking a home building kit and turning it into a small, second building on your property, gives you a granny flat. Depending on the type of property you own, a granny flat could be attached to the main building of the house, or they might be a completely separate building if the property has enough garden space. Building a small titan house as a second building is indeed a very economical way of adding additional overall building space to your property, when compared with renovating an existing building.
A granny flat will be around 60 square metres in size, which means they’re much smaller than the main building. Sometimes they’re used as a home office or hobby/ entertainment space, but for the purposes of this article, what you really want to do with that small home building kit is turn the granny flat into a secondary living space, so it should have all the features that you would expect from a complete living area – bedroom, kitchen, and other living spaces.
What are the rules regarding granny flats?
It’s important to check on whether you’re allowed to build a granny flat with council first. For example, your block of land will likely need to be over 450 square metres in size, and you’ll probably need to meet a range of conditions, including:
- The granny flat and primary property will need to be owned by the same person
- You’ll only be able to have one on the property
- The access to the flat needs to be clear and unobstructed
Be aware that it can take up to 6-8 weeks to get approval to build a granny flat on your property. The good news is that once you’ve done that, purchasing a titan house and having it built can be a very fast process indeed – they’re designed to be constructed in as little as 8-12 weeks – and then you’ll be able to start reaping the benefits of having one on your property.
What are the benefits of a granny flat?
The most immediately obvious benefit to having a granny flat is that it opens up new rental opportunities. One thing that’s quite common in Australia is the number of students or young couples that are desperate to find places to live that don’t have monthly rental fees beyond their limited earning capacity. For these people, the smaller space and shared environment that comes with small titan houses also means lower monthly rent, and it gives them a place to get a start on life.
A granny flat can increase rental yield from the property by up to 10% , which might not sound like much, but given that home building kits themselves are affordable, quick, and easy to construct, it’s an investment that will return a new profit quite quickly.
That also means monthly revenue for you that you weren’t earning previously, and that can be a huge help in supplementing – or even completely covering – mortgage repayments.
But that’s not the only use of a granny flat. In fact, one of the greatest benefits of these is the number of uses they offer. Some people don’t like the idea of strangers living on the same property as their primary home, of course, but that doesn’t mean that a granny flat won’t still be of value.
For example, children are staying at home longer, now – in part because rent, let alone purchasing property – is far beyond what a young professional or someone still at university can manage. A granny flat gives them that measure of independence that they’ll want as they emerging into adulthood, while allowing their parents to help them out and start saving towards property of their own.
A granny flat could also be used as a dedicated home office, providing the benefits of a building separate to your home for work purposes (helping to structure a boundary between home and work life, and helping to keep clients out of your living home), while saving on the cost of commercial property rental. Or you could use a titan house as a hobby space, and turn it into an area you use to host parties, or use as a games room, woodworking or painting room, music practice area, or for any other hobby you might have where being “apart” from the main home allows you to indulge in it in peace.
Another common use for a granny flat is a way of housing your elderly parents, helping you to look after them without needing to put them into a home and still giving them the independence that they’ll want. It is called a “granny” flat for a reason, after all.
One of the really great things about granny flats is that they are so versatile, and their purpose can change as your needs change. You might build it as a place to house your young adult child as they go through university and working their first job, and then rent it out or convert it to an extra space for yourself once they’ve moved out. Or. you might start our using it as a games room, only to put the pool table away and install a nice desk when you find an opportunity to start a new business of your own. Titan houses are versatile in the way that they can be constructed, and the potential uses of the space once constructed are many and varied.
Tips for getting the most out of your titan house investment
- Conduct sufficient research: Before building a granny flat one your property, you need to weigh up whether it will be a worthwhile investment. Research council regulations and associated costs carefully, and if you plan on renting out the flat once complete, you should also research the demand for rental properties in your area.
- Choose the style wisely: Granny flats typically come in a variety of size options, from neat and compact designs to free flowing homes with open plan living spaces. Depending on its intended purpose, you should be particular when selecting the size and amenities you’d like included in your granny flat. For example, if it’s being used as space for the kids to eventually move into, a 2 bedroom Titan House 54e would be ideal, as opposed to a compact Titan House 45a which is better suited to temporary guest accommodation, or a separate retreat from the rest of the home.
- Collect accurate quotes: Make sure to collect accurate quotes from your selected contractor to know exactly how much the granny flat build will cost.
- Sort your finances: If you already have sufficient equity in your property, you should be able to get the money for a titan house build by refinancing your existing home loan.
For more information on titan houses and how to make them work for your property, feel free to contact us at Titan Garages. We’ve been successful in helping a large number of Australians get a titan house onto their property, and would be more than happy to discuss how we can help you with your own ideas.