The tiny-home trend isn’t going away anytime soon. In fact, the movement may be gaining momentum. Small living was all the buzz at this year’s International Builders’ Show, where manufacturers showcased several innovative micro-home models.

Scaled-down residential units are more than a curious novelty — they’re now positioned as a solution to our current housing crisis.

“The show revealed that to make the most of hobbled opportunities, developers, architects and builders are trimming the size of primary residences. Or dropping accessory dwelling units into backyards … Or investigating new technologies for building affordable housing, including three-dimensional printing or innovations in factory-built structures,” The New York Times reports in its debut column “Living Small.”

Among the diminutive structures at the show, a model from Boxabl Homes gathered intense interest from showgoers. The company demonstrated how it could stack its 375-square-foot prefabricated units to create a modest-sized home. (Elon Musk is rumored to own one.) Similarly, Impresa Building Systems showcased a 1,400-square-foot modular home outfitted with modern appliances. Products like these are in demand as builders and architects seek to squeeze accessory dwelling units (ADUs) into backyards across the country as a housing shortage stopgap. According to the National Home Builders Association, 20 percent of remodelers have taken on an ADU project.

Another thing these structures demonstrate is that they’re more luxurious, spacious, and efficient than conventional tiny homes.

Builders and architects aren’t limited to placing prefab units in developed areas. With propane as a plug-and-play energy source, there are opportunities to build micro-home communities in more rural locations without access to natural gas.

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