Austin's new HOME Initiative allows the construction of up to three dwellings on single-family lots, similar to what's pictured above. PORTLAND PRESS HERALD

Austin Business Journal reports, "developers and homebuilders hoping to take advantage of a new program that will allow up to three residential units to be built on a lot currently zoned for one are about to get their chance.

That's because the HOME Initiative goes into effect Feb. 5, and those who are interested can start applying at that time.

Applications must be submitted through Austin's residential plan review process, according to a new city information hub devoted to the HOME Initiative, which stands for Home Options for Middle-income Empowerment.

The initiative allows the construction of up to three dwellings on lots currently zoned SF-1, SF-2 and SF-3. Most single-family homes in Austin fall into one of those zoning categories.

Approved by City Council in December, the program is viewed as an incremental step to address the issue of high housing costs in Austin that force people to live farther outside the city.

The first phase of the program also is designed to decrease the cost of building multiple dwellings on single-family lots, which is expected to create new opportunities for builders and infill housing developers. It will also allow these projects to gain approval through the city’s general residential review process, instead of through the more expensive and time-consuming site plan review process. HOME also removes restrictions on the number of unrelated adults living in a housing unit. The hope is that any cost savings on these projects will be passed on to homebuyers through lower listing prices.

A second phase of the HOME program, set to be taken up this year, would reduce requirements for minimum lot sizes from 5,000 square feet to 2,500 square feet, with a goal of promoting the construction of smaller single-family homes."


Source: Austin Business Journal 

Written by: Mike Christen

Published: January 30, 2024

Posted by Grossman & Jones Group on


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