The Japanese micro homes redefined living small. Real estate in Japan is tough to come by and many of its cities are filled with small, narrow lots, giving rise to the trend of designing and building kyosho jutaku or micro-homes.

This tiny houses or often designed by young architects on unused or “leftover” land. It’s not atypical for a kyosho jutaku to be built on a lot slightly larger than a parking spot or smaller.

Small, energy-efficient single family homes could be just the thing for big cities attempting to make the most out of every square inch of space.

Here you can check out some of the most beautiful micro homes.

House in Wakabadai, Satoshi Okada

House in Wakabadai, Satoshi Okada, 2006, Kawasaki.
Photograph: Courtesy Satoshi Okada

Dancing Living House

Dancing Living House, ALX, 2008, Yokohama.
Photograph: Koichi Torimura

Transustainable House, Sugawardaisuke

Transustainable House, Sugawardaisuke, 2014, Miura.
Photograph: Jeremie Souteyrat

Juul House, NKS Architects

Juul House, NKS Architects, 2012, Yukuhashi.
Photograph: Kouji Okamoto

KHT House, International Royal Architecture, 2013, Kahoku.

KHT House, International Royal Architecture, 2013, Kahoku.
Photograph: Courtesy International Royal Architecture

Riverside House, Kota Mizuishi

Riverside House, Kota Mizuishi, 2011, Suginami-ku.
Photograph: Courtesy Kota Mizuishi

House of Density, Jun Igarashi

House of Density, Jun Igarashi, 2013, Sapporo.
Photograph: Sergio Pirrone

The Split Merchant's House

The Split Merchant’s House AKA ‘63.02’ Nakano, Tokyo.

House in Abiko by Fuse Atelier.

House in Abiko by Fuse Atelier.

Garden and Sea House by Takao Shiotsuka Atelier.

Garden and Sea House by Takao Shiotsuka Atelier.

The Split House Tokyo.

The Split House Tokyo.

Showa-cho House Osaka

Showa-cho House Osaka

If you want to see more of Japan’s Micro Homes you can search for Architect Naomi Pollock, who traveled from Tokyo to Kawasaki to Sapporo to photograph the small houses that put the boring old A-frame to shame. (The book Jutaku: Japanese Houses was published by Phaidon.)