Fastest ADU Builder in Los Angeles

6 Week Challenge 

We are having a 6 week challenge to build the fastest garage conversion in Los Angeles. This will be the new norm for converting your garage into a rentable unit.

How long does an ADU take to build? Neo Builders can build a standard ADU conversion in 6 weeks. 

Neo Builders started a garage conversion in North Hollywood. The project started on April 20th, 2020 and aims be finished before June 8th, 2020. The 6 Week Challenge will be from the first day of demolition until the final LADBS inspection. 

NEO Builders will be uploading daily content on Instagram and Youtube. Don't miss out on the race against the clock!

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Week 1

ADU Demolition

Starting with demolition, the demo process includes removing all existing conditions, which can include illegal bathrooms, existing drywall, floors, and kitchenettes. This is the initial phase of demo. Other aspects of demo include: demolishing and hauling away garage doors, excavating under the former garage door to install a new footing, typically 12" x 24”. Ironically, Most garages in California dont have existing footings. 

 

Many times, clients with non-compliant garages ask us to leave the existing shower stall, toilets and kitchen intact, however, local building and safety laws don't always allow this, as they want to inspect the rough and underground plumbing. Therefore, we have a pre-inspection with our resident inspector to avoid any issues before demo begins.

Demo usually takes between one and two days depending scope and size of the project. 

 

ADU Underground Plumbing

The next step in the process is underground plumbing. This includes trenching to install new sewer lines, new gas line, and new water lines. Usually, we must run a line to connect to our main sewer line in the front yard. Keep in mind, new sewer lines can connect to the existing lines, but must be at least 5 feet away from the home. This phase usually take 3-4 working days

ADU Foundation and Framing

We simultaneously work on our foundation and framing elements because many times the underground plumbing must run through our new footing to reach the new proposed locations of the kitchen and bathroom.

 

ADU Ceiling and Roof Rafters

Next, we will discuss our framing, which typically require us to alter our ceiling joists and roof rafters and sometimes our roof sheathing, but these vary per plan.

Other framing elements that we run into during the garage conversation is the installation of shear walls on the corner of the existing garage as listed per plan. These need to be inspected by the deputy inspector and the building inspector.

 

ADU Windows

Towards the end of the framing phase we will have the windows picked up from our local supplier and installed before the framing inspections.

Week 2

Once the vast majority of our framing is complete, we will commence rough plumbing and rough electrical.

 

ADU Plumbing

Rough plumbing includes the layout for the bathroom size. The size of the shower stall and the location of the vanity will be marked in concrete. This also extends to the layout of the kitchen and to the location of the washer and dryer as per plan.

 

ADU Electrical

Rough electrical includes the installation of the subpanel, recess lights, electrical outlets, and switches. Everything will be wired to the subpanel. Lately in Los Angeles county, we have been receiving numerous requests to install E-vehicle outlets in the front of our ADUs. This item should be planned ahead of time and discussed with your contractor as it requires our licensed electrician to do a load calculation for the entire electrical system in the ADU.

 

ADU HVAC

The next step is the HVAC. We typically install more ductless mini splits in our ADUs. They are easy to install and have heating and cooling as required by the State of California’s Title 24 Ordinance. For a standard 400 Sqf garage, we usually see requirements of 1.5 tons condensers.

 

MEPs

Once we pass all of our mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEPs) inspections, we then receive permission to insulate the walls and ceilings.

Week 3

ADU Insulation

The type of insulation that we are required to use is stipulated in our Title 24 sheet, which is stapled to our stamped plans. We assume that as of 2020, R15 insulation will be required in the walls and R38 insulation in the ceilings.

Fun Fact: The "R" stands for resistance.

The higher the R value of the insulation, the more resistant the insulation is to the outdoor elements.

 

ADU Drywall

We can only hang drywall after the insulation is inspected. Most projects use 5/8" drywall, unless otherwise instructed by the plans. We will use purple drywall boards in all wet locations such as behind the vanity, toilet and kitchen sink. We finalise this step by having an inspection on the nailing of the drywall.

 

ADU Mudding Taping Sanding and Paint

After the drywall inspection, we begin taping the drywall seams, mudding, and sanding in preparation for painting. Once all the surfaces of the walls and ceilings are skim coated, we will first prime then paint everything to the desired color.

 

ADU Stucco or Siding 

Concurrently, we are working on fixing the exterior stucco or siding, whichever is required by plan. We then wrap the affected areas with exterior lathing paper, which is inspected by a building and safety inspector. After this, we receive permission to cover with stucco, which is a 3 step process.. 

 

The steps include: scratch, brown and final (color) coats.

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