Massachusetts House of Representatives adopt Accessory Dwelling Units Provision in $6.2 Billion Housing Bond Bill.

If passed by the Senate and signed by Governor Healey, Massachusetts would have the strongest statewide ADU law in New England.

Boston, Massachusetts Last night, the Massachusetts House of Representatives adopted the $6.2 billion Housing Bond Bill, formally known as the Affordable Homes Act proposed by the Healey-Driscoll Administration. If adopted by the senate, and signed by Governor Healey, Massachusetts will have the strongest and most effective standards for Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) in New England. 

The Accessory Dwelling Units provision in the newest version of the Housing Bond Bill allows ADUs to be built as of right in single-family zoning districts statewide. State officials project that more than 8,000 ADUs could be built over the next 5 years. This is a significant achievement for statewide pro-housing organization Abundant Housing Massachusetts (AHMA) from whose priority bill this legislative session the Healey administration borrowed heavily for the ADU component of their Affordable Homes Act.

“I am proud to see the adoption of ADUs within the House bill without any unnecessary restrictions or poison pills. Advocates from across the state have spoken of the need for standardization and less barriers to building ADUs. This meaningful piece of legislation allows homeowners to generate additional income or house loved ones with disabilities, aging family members, or young adults who might not otherwise be able to afford to live in the community where they were raised. ADUs are a gentle yet effective tool in the Massachusetts toolbox to address our severe housing storage,” said Jesse Kanson-Benanav, Executive Director of Abundant Housing Massachusetts. 

The Massachusetts House of Representatives heard ten amendments to the ADU provision. One compromise made by the House was clarification that only one ADU per home is allowed by-right on single family lots state-wide. Additional ADUs can be approved by special permit. 

At AHMA, we take pride in our goals to help educate, reform, and organize around the right to build and sustain affordable homes for all Massachusetts residents. We deeply thank and support the work of Representative Andy Vargas for his pro-housing leadership across the state and his partnership on the ADU component of this historic piece of legislation.  Additionally, we are grateful to the leadership of Speaker Ron Mariano, Chairman Aaron Michlewitz, and Chairman James Arciero for their work to ensure ADUs remained a policy cornerstone of the Affordable Homes Act without the adoption of poison bill amendments that would hinder the ability to create ADUs to house our residents across the Commonwealth. We look forward to working with Senate President Karen Spilka, Chairman Michael Rodigues and their colleagues to ensure the senate includes a strong ADU provision in the Housing Bond Bill,” said Kanson-Benanav. 


Abundant Housing Massachusetts is a non-profit organization founded in 2020 to advocate for the creation of abundant housing for all and to develop and support a network of grassroots, pro-housing groups and activists across Massachusetts. AHMA is committed to fostering a movement that includes diverse voices, geography, and people with different lived experiences to help shape an inclusive statewide pro-housing network.