Letters to the Editor

Secondary dwellings in SLO would unfairly raise housing costs

A story on the last San Luis Obispo Planning Commission meeting quoted Commissioner Charles Stevenson: “(Secondary dwellings) are a great solution to provide affordable rental and homes for aging parents. It’s something we should really encourage and promote.”

No they’re not, and no we shouldn’t.

Second units attached to houses (granny flats) are one of the great affordable housing hoaxes promoted by planning ideologues.

Because they rent for market rates, they offer zero affordability advantage over other rentals. In San Luis Obispo, they’re mainly student housing, which goes for top dollar.

What promoting second units does to the cost of buying homes is truly obscene. A home with a second unit sells for about $200,000 more than one without, but even the potential for adding a second unit can drive up selling prices.

The more second units we promote in San Luis Obispo, the higher home costs will rise. And more and more hopeful homebuyers will find they can’t afford a house here. This is just plain bad planning, and it must stop.

Richard Schmidt, San Luis Obispo