Architecture

Five of the finest flatpack homes

Five of the finest flatpack ho...
The Britespace flatpack homes comes in three sizes
The Britespace flatpack homes comes in three sizes
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The snug bathroom inside the Britespace flatpack home includes a shower, toilet, and sink
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The snug bathroom inside the Britespace flatpack home includes a shower, toilet, and sink
The interior of the Britespace flatpack home is finished in high-end materials, including solid bamboo and maple cabinetry, and oak flooring
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The interior of the Britespace flatpack home is finished in high-end materials, including solid bamboo and maple cabinetry, and oak flooring
The Britespace flatpack home costs US$90,000 - $184,000, not including installation
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The Britespace flatpack home costs US$90,000 - $184,000, not including installation
The Britespace flatpack homes comes in three sizes
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The Britespace flatpack homes comes in three sizes
The interior of the Britespace flatpack home is finished in high-end materials including solid bamboo and maple cabinetry and oak flooring
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The interior of the Britespace flatpack home is finished in high-end materials including solid bamboo and maple cabinetry and oak flooring
Kitchen inside the Plús Hús, a flatpack modular home with good energy efficiency
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Kitchen inside the Plús Hús, a flatpack modular home with good energy efficiency
Kitchen inside the Plús Hús, a flatpack modular home with good energy efficiency
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Kitchen inside the Plús Hús, a flatpack modular home with good energy efficiency
The Plús Hús was inspired by the current housing shortage in California and the recent changes to building regulations, which now allow homeowners to more easily add a small dwelling to their property
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The Plús Hús was inspired by the current housing shortage in California and the recent changes to building regulations, which now allow homeowners to more easily add a small dwelling to their property
Kitchenette, living and study area inside the Plús Hús
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Kitchenette, living and study area inside the Plús Hús
The Plús Hús is available in three different versions: Open, Open+ and a full Plús Hús unit. The latter includes a bathroom with plumbing and fixtures
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The Plús Hús is available in three different versions: Open, Open+ and a full Plús Hús unit. The latter includes a bathroom with plumbing and fixtures
Pricing for the Plús Hús flatpack homes starts at US$37,000
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Pricing for the Plús Hús flatpack homes starts at US$37,000
Living area inside the Plús Hús flatpack home
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Living area inside the Plús Hús flatpack home
Santa Monica-based architectural firm Minarc offers energy-efficient modular homes that won't break the bank, called Plús Hús
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Santa Monica-based architectural firm Minarc offers energy-efficient modular homes that won't break the bank, called Plús Hús
Plús Hús is built using mnmMOD panels, which are prefabricated off-site using certified extruded polystyrene and 30 percent recycled steel
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Plús Hús is built using mnmMOD panels, which are prefabricated off-site using certified extruded polystyrene and 30 percent recycled steel
Living and kitchen inside the flatpack Plús Hús
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Living and kitchen inside the flatpack Plús Hús
Bedroom inside the flatpack Plús Hús
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Bedroom inside the flatpack Plús Hús
Dining and kitchen inside the flatpack Plús Hús
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Dining and kitchen inside the flatpack Plús Hús
Eating area inside the flatpack Plús Hús
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Eating area inside the flatpack Plús Hús
Kitchen area inside the flatpack Plús Hús
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Kitchen area inside the flatpack Plús Hús
Florida's Cubicco's line of flatpack homes include shelters that can withstand hurricane force winds
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Florida's Cubicco's line of flatpack homes include shelters that can withstand hurricane force winds
Inside one of Cubicco's hurricane-resistant flatpack homes
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Inside one of Cubicco's hurricane-resistant flatpack homes
Inside one of Cubicco's hurricane-resistant flatpack homes
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Inside one of Cubicco's hurricane-resistant flatpack homes
Cubicco's hurricane-resistant flatpack homes can be placed on stilts if flooding is a concern
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Cubicco's hurricane-resistant flatpack homes can be placed on stilts if flooding is a concern
Cubicco offers hurricane-resistant flatpack homes in varying shapes and sizes, including a micro-shelter that can be used as a studio or additional bedroom
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Cubicco offers hurricane-resistant flatpack homes in varying shapes and sizes, including a micro-shelter that can be used as a studio or additional bedroom
One of the smaller flatpack homes from Florida's Cubicco
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One of the smaller flatpack homes from Florida's Cubicco
Kitchen area inside one of Cubicco's hurricane-resistant flatpack homes
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Kitchen area inside one of Cubicco's hurricane-resistant flatpack homes
Upper level interior of the M.A.Di home
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Upper level interior of the M.A.Di home
The M.A.Di home is a flat-packed housing solution built to last and withstand earthquakes
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The M.A.Di home is a flat-packed housing solution built to last and withstand earthquakes
The M.A.Di home is built using CLT (cross laminated timber)
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The M.A.Di home is built using CLT (cross laminated timber)
A complete M.A.Di flatpack home
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A complete M.A.Di flatpack home
Rendering of complete M.A.Di flatpack homes
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Rendering of complete M.A.Di flatpack homes
The prefabricated foldable M.A.Di house takes less than a day to install once on site
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The prefabricated foldable M.A.Di house takes less than a day to install once on site
The prefabricated M.A.Di house is made up of folding modules that unfurl for easy construction on site
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The prefabricated M.A.Di house is made up of folding modules that unfurl for easy construction on site
The prefabricated M.A.Di house is made up of folding modules that unfurl for easy construction on site
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The prefabricated M.A.Di house is made up of folding modules that unfurl for easy construction on site
Rendering of the lower level of the flatpack M.A.Di house
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Rendering of the lower level of the flatpack M.A.Di house
The Kiss House flatpack home is available in two, three and four bedroom versions
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The Kiss House flatpack home is available in two, three and four bedroom versions
The Kiss House features open-plan living on the ground floor, with a large modern kitchen
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The Kiss House features open-plan living on the ground floor, with a large modern kitchen
Offering two, three and four bedroom versions, the Kiss House is built using cross-laminated timber (CLT)
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Offering two, three and four bedroom versions, the Kiss House is built using cross-laminated timber (CLT)
The Kiss House flatpack home is available in two, three and four bedroom versions
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The Kiss House flatpack home is available in two, three and four bedroom versions
The Kiss House flatpack home meets Passivhaus low-energy standards
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The Kiss House flatpack home meets Passivhaus low-energy standards
Kitchen area inside the Kiss House flatpack home, which takes less than a week to install
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Kitchen area inside the Kiss House flatpack home, which takes less than a week to install
Kitchen area inside the Kiss House flatpack home, which takes less than a week to install
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Kitchen area inside the Kiss House flatpack home, which takes less than a week to install
The Kiss House flatpack home is available in two, three and four bedroom versions
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The Kiss House flatpack home is available in two, three and four bedroom versions
Bathroom inside the Kiss House flatpack home
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Bathroom inside the Kiss House flatpack home
View gallery - 44 images

There's little doubt that the neatly packaged nature of a certain Swedish furniture-maker's products are a big reason for its success, and lately we're seeing how flatpack kits can have a certain appeal for those looking into alternative housing solutions. Here are five of our favorites.

Whether it's the convenience of a fast, pop-up style construction, the ability to transport complete housing kits to remote locations, or the relatively low cost, prefabricated flatpack homes are emerging as an increasingly popular option for house-hunters around the globe.

Sometimes elegant, often energy efficient and always comparably simple to build, these small-footprint dwellings are seen as cute Airbnb-style add-ons to some and legitimate solutions to housing crises by others. Whatever the purpose, there's something about the constraints of their construction that produces often ingenious homes with a certain simplistic charm. Below are five that we think are particularly easy on the eye.

Cubicco's hurricane-resistant homes

Florida's Cubicco's line of flatpack homes include shelters that can withstand hurricane force winds
Florida's Cubicco's line of flatpack homes include shelters that can withstand hurricane force winds

Flordia's Cubicco offers a range of expandable flatpack homes, ranging from small micro-shelters to complete homes with a couple of bedrooms, office and kitchen. Built from sustainably sourced wood, vertical gardens, green roofs and rooftop solar are available as add-ons, as are rainwater harvesting systems and batteries for off-grid living. One thing all have in common, however, is an ability to withstand hurricane-level wind speeds of up to 180 mph (290 km/h). Prices start at US$58,500 for a basic self-build unit.

Britespace, by Avava Systems

The Britespace flatpack home costs US$90,000 - $184,000, not including installation
The Britespace flatpack home costs US$90,000 - $184,000, not including installation

Also available in various configurations, the flatpack Britespace home is built to operate on- or off-grid with options for rainwater harvesting, rooftop solar and battery storage. It takes around six weeks to assemble, with the pictured stucco and weather-resistant hardwood siding among the options for the facade. The interior is finished in a tasteful mix of high-end materials, such as solid bamboo, maple cabinetry and oak flooring. Prices start at $90,000, not including installation.

M.A.Di House, by Renato Vidal

The prefabricated foldable M.A.Di house takes less than a day to install once on site
The prefabricated foldable M.A.Di house takes less than a day to install once on site

Italian architect Renato Vidal created this home from cross laminated timber and did so in a way that enables flatpack modules to be shipped out and folded open on site, forming a complete, two-level house in less than a day. The unfolded home has a height of 6.5 m (21.3 ft) and can be extended lengthways simply by adding more modules. The finishings, such as flooring and interior walls, come on mounting boards and can also be installed on the same day, with the entire structure designed to endure earthquakes. Pricing for a M.A.Di House starts at around €800 (US$933) per square meter.

Plús Hús, by Minarc

Plús Hús is built using mnmMOD panels, which are prefabricated off-site using certified extruded polystyrene and 30 percent recycled steel
Plús Hús is built using mnmMOD panels, which are prefabricated off-site using certified extruded polystyrene and 30 percent recycled steel

This 320-sq ft (30-sq m) flatpack home can be assembled in a few days once it arrives at a properly prepared site, with all finishings cut to size to keep on-site waste, costs and construction time to a minimum. The mnmMOD panels that replace traditional timber framing are made from recycled materials and have high insulation values, with maker Minarc claiming the Plús Hús is 40 percent more energy efficient than traditional homes.

Inspired by the current housing shortage in California, the Plús Hús is available in three sizes, ranging from a basic module to the full Plús Hús unit complete with bathroom, kitchen, and all plumbing, appliances and cabinetry. Prices range from $37,000 to $49,000.

Kiss House

The Kiss House flatpack home is available in two, three and four bedroom versions
The Kiss House flatpack home is available in two, three and four bedroom versions

Built to Passivhaus standards, the gold standard for energy efficiency, the Kiss House uses cross laminated timber as its primary material, which is fast gaining recognition as a sustainable alternative for construction. It is available in three difference sizes, ranging from a two-bedroom option to a four-bedroom home with a 85.8-sq m (923.5-sq ft) footprint.

It arrives as stacks of panels prefabricated off site that can be assembled on a prepared concrete slab in three to four days. These flatpacks can be carried by road or sea to anywhere in the world and form configurable dwellings to suit each clients needs. As a guide, pricing starts at approximately £2,000 (around US$2,550) per square meter.

To see more of these fabulous flatpack homes, have a look through our gallery.

View gallery - 44 images
2 comments
ljaques
Vidal has the right idea. Nice setup, minimal price.
Tom Lee Mullins
It sounds like a house that IKEA would sell; a flat pack house. I think that is cool.