Did you know that the interior design industry makes about $10 billion every year?

While many may think that designing and furnishing the interior of your building isn’t a big deal, these finishing touches can help bring the entire space together.

The right ADU interior design can unlock and maximize the value of the building. By maximizing the space, you may even find the space to be more practical for you and your loved ones to use throughout the year.

Looking for a guide to help you with your ADU interior choices? You’re in the right place. Here’s everything you need to know about decorating and furnishing your ADU.

How to Choose the Right ADU Finishes

ADU interior design is important as it can help bring the entire space together. Different ADU designs can be used for different purposes as well. To help you choose the right ADU finishes, here are some important questions you can ask yourself.

What’s the Purpose of the Space?

The best place to start when looking for inspiration is the purpose of the space. What you plan to use the space for can help you decide what finishes and furnishes you are going to need.

If you plan to use the space as a home office, you may want to go for a warmer finish. This is drastically different from an ADU that you wish to use as a ADU rental property. In that situation, you would want to go for materials that are durable and can be tenant proof. If you are not sure what you want to use the space for, your best bet is to go for a neutral theme. These natural and neutral tones are classy and modern. In addition to this, they can fit a wide variety of uses.

What Is Your Budget?

The next step in the process is to set a budget for your interior furnishings. While you may think interior design is just paint and a few chairs, things can get very pricey very quickly. This is why it’s essential you sit down and decide on a budget for furnishing the space or ask your general contractor what would be a good fit for the type of use you want

This budget can then guide your decision-making. By this stage in the process, you will have a good idea of the different items and finishes you want for the space. The budget can then help you decide on what exact kind of item you can buy.

For example, if you know you need two chairs, the budget will let you know if you can go ahead and buy those $1,000 chairs or if you need to go for the $50 option.

How Much Space Do You Have?

Another important factor to consider is the amount of space you have available. ADUs come in all shapes and sizes, with Esco Builders providing personalization services to build an ADU exactly to your specifications.

This size is important as it will also dictate what you can fit inside. For example, if you have a kitchen that you want to furnish inside your ADU, the available space will guide you to what appliances you can get. You may be able to get a small fridge and microwave in but not an oven.

This is why it’s important to plan things out before you make any purchases. Don’t be afraid to look up the measurements of desks, chairs, and appliances before you get them to make sure that they will fit.

Tips To Make the Most of the Space in Your ADU

While ADUs can be personalized, there are a few things you can do to make the space feel larger. These are industry tips that professional interior designers use to help make small spaces look and feel larger. Here are a few of the best ideas you can use when designing your interior space.

1. Keep The Space Decluttered

The most important thing you can do to make any space appear larger is to keep things clean and organized. Always keep your counters clean and clear as this will make the space feel and look more spacious.

A great way to make sure things stay clear is to allocate space for everything in your space. As an example, create designated drawers and cupboards for cups, plates, and utensils in the kitchen. This way, you will know exactly where to put them when you’re done.

2. Use Lighter Colors

While warm colors can make a room feel warm and cozy, cool colors can make the space feel open and spacious. Softer tones help add to this effect, with the best options being soft blues and greens. If you want to keep the theme more neutral, you can achieve this effect with beige as well.

3. Install Mirrors

Mirrors are another great way to make any space feel larger. Even if you don’t have too much wall space, a tall mirror will do the job. This works by creating an optical illusion within the room. Due to the wall now reflecting more space, you won’t notice the boundaries of the room as easily anymore.

4. Natural Light

Natural light is one of the most effective ways to make any space feel airy and comfortable. This can help brighten up your entire space, while also saving you on energy bills at the same time.

A great way to get more natural light into your space is to opt for glass sliding doors instead of standard wooden doors. While these are more expensive, they can slide open and allow for fresh air and natural light to flood the space.

5. Reflective Surfaces

Reflective surfaces work in the same way as mirrors. They offer a slight optical effect to make you less aware of the hard boundaries of the room. Unlike mirrors that can only be used in a limited capacity, reflective surfaces can be all around you.

If you have a wooden floor, consider varnishing it to add a reflective shine to it. The same can be said for your counters and coffee tables. These may seem like small additions, but they add up to make the entire space look and feel larger.

ADU Interior Finishes

When it comes to your specific furnishings, it’s always best to prioritize quality. In this you’re your investment will last much longer. Here are some great finishes you should consider when designing the interior of your accessory dwelling unit.

Interior Walls

The walls are a great place to add creativity to the space. While you can add mirrors to help make the space feel larger, you can also hang up art and other decorative items to match the theme of the room. This can help elevate the design of the entire space.


Luxury Vinyl Plank are the most popular choice when it comes to choosing a floor for your ADU. These floors are waterproof and resistant to easy scratching. This can help if you plan to use the garage as a living space as it would help protect the floor from easy damage.


Depending on what you plan to use the space for, there are different kinds of furniture available. There is also an entire category of furniture designed for small spaces. This includes couches that can convert into a bed and even tables that can fold up to save floor space.

As with all furnishings, quality is important. While there may be cheaper options, quality items are more likely to last. This makes it worth the higher price.


Lighting is one of the most important parts of any space. When it comes to choosing lights for your ADU, be sure to install LEDs throughout the space. LEDs are both brighter and more energy-efficient compared to traditional bulbs.

LED lights come in all shapes and sizes. There are even a few LED chandeliers available. This means that you can still get the design and look you want for the space while opting for the eco-friendlier lighting option.

If your budget allows, you can even go with smart LEDs. These LED lights connect to your home’s network to allow you to control them from your phone or smart home device. This can be a great way to switch off the lights in your ADU from your main home.


Furnishing the bathroom is always tricky. While there are many positives to including a bathtub in the bathroom, many agree that you’re better off with just a shower. This is because a shower takes up less space in the bathroom and encourages you to save water at the same time.

Bathroom flooring and walls can be tiled. However, there are waterproof wallpaper options available if you want a slightly cheaper alternative. It’s important that your flooring and walls are waterproof as this can help prevent water damage.

Doors and Windows

When picking the doors and windows for your ADU, always choose quality. Even if it costs more, it’s worth it in the long run. Aluminum-framed windows are much better than any other metal as they won’t rust as quickly. This is also a stronger and more reliable option compared to wood.

As mentioned above, consider installing a sliding door instead of a traditional wooden door. This is because it can allow for more natural light to enter the space, but also because it can save you space. Sliding doors won’t impede any floor space as they just slide against the wall. This is why you should consider sliding doors for all interior doors as well.


Installing and furnishing a kitchen in your ADU is a great idea, even if you don’t need one right now. Having an extra kitchen is always a good thing, but this also allows the space to easily be converted into an investment property.

When furnishing the kitchen, the priorities should always be the stove, air extractor, and fridge. Everything else is optional. If you don’t have a lot of space to spare, you can opt for a microwave that also can function as an oven. This can help you save a lot of space while still having an oven in the kitchen.


Whether you plan to use the ADU as a guest house or an office, there are a few appliances every space needs. As mentioned above, you will need a fridge, stove, and microwave if you have a kitchen. Other handy appliances could include a coffee machine, water filter, kettle, and toaster.

To kit out an office, installing plug points can be a big help. In addition to this, consider installing an air conditioner or some kind of HVAC system in the space. This can help regulate temperature, making the space comfortable to use throughout the year.

Finding the Right ADU Interior Finishes

When it comes to ADU Interiors, there are a few things you can do to make the most out of the space. Even if you have a small space to work with, you can make it feel larger by adding mirrors and other reflective finishes. Also, remember to be realistic about your budget on your ADU interior & your ADU overall.

Interested in building an ADU? We are here to help. Esco Builders is dedicated to working with homeowners to create unique and high-quality accessory dwelling units. Whatever the budget, we can make it happen.

If you’re interested in partnering with us or want to learn more about our services, feel free to contact us today.