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Three Story Small House in Japan That Fits in a Parking Spot

A few years back, CNN covered this three story tiny house in Japan that fits in a parking spot. In the past, I’ve covered a few similar small homes on Tiny House Talk, including:

The kitchen, living room, and dining area is the size of an average American’s walk-in closet. Instead of cabinet and closet doors, they use sliding curtains to conserve the most amount of space. Their washer/dryer is not only a combination unit, it’s also tucked underneath a counter so you hardly notice it’s there. Some small appliances like their microwave are hidden inside of a slide out cabinet so that it’s easy to access yet not always visible.

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3 Story Tiny House that Fits in a Parking Spot in Japan

Photo Credit CNN/Youtube

I encourage you to check out the rest of this unique home, and watch the video tour and interview below:

Kitchen, Living and Dining Room all in one Space in this Tiny 3 Story Japan Home

Photo Credit CNN/YouTube

Slide Out Storage for Appliances like Microwave Save Space and Make Everything Look More Minimalist

Photo Credit CNN/YouTube

In the bathroom, for example, you’ll find a sink less than half the size of a normal one. To make the home seem larger they used giant windows so that light comes in and so that there’s this illusion that everything’s more spacious.

The shoes are stacked neatly in a tall closet in the stairway of the house. This is actually a very convenient place for them since it’s on your way out of the house. In fact, every corner in the design has been utilized for storage. Even the unique triangular spiral stairway steps were designed to take up the least amount of space possible.

Challenges these Small Space Homeowners Face:

  • Keeping stuff to a minimum (they only own two coffee mugs)
  • Bringing in enough light to the house
  • Having enough privacy (homeowner lives with his mother)

The lot which this house sits on is just 322-square-feet in size which was previously used as a parking space. Today more and more people not just in Japan, but throughout the world, are designing, building, and looking for smaller, smarter and more affordable housing.

Watch the Video Tour of this 3-Story Japanese Small House

Surprisingly, the owner spent about $500,000 in USD to build this home. But apparently that’s a bargain for a brand new modern home in Tokyo.

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More Like This: Tiny Houses | Amazing 134 Sq. Ft. Japanese Inspired Tiny Home by Oregon Cottage Company | THOW

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Alex is a contributor and editor for TinyHouseTalk.com and the always free Tiny House Newsletter. He has a passion for exploring and sharing tiny homes (from yurts and RVs to tiny cabins and cottages) and inspiring simple living stories. We invite you to send in your story and tiny home photos too so we can re-share and inspire others towards a simple life too. Thank you!
{ 9 comments… add one }
  • EP
    September 23, 2012, 3:37 pm

    While the Japanese have been innovating tiny home designs that offer valuable solutions to comfortable living in limited spaces, the aesthetics of these modern homes are rather lacking. Most of them feel cold, impersonal, sterile, and institutional. Culturally speaking, they’ve lost nearly every element of warmth and charm that is so characteristic of traditional Japanese homes. The design gallery at: (Link Expired: thebonsaihouse.blogspot.com) offers outstanding examples that gracefully illustrate this contrast.

    • mark
      April 29, 2013, 11:03 pm

      I think you are wrong completely. They embody the Japanese aesthetic but they just don’t spell it out. The element are there. Scandinavian and mid century modern styles I believe are based on principles of Japanese design and so are these types of houses. They reference Japanese tradition without looking like a temple or tea house. This is subtle and fresh.

      • Alex
        April 30, 2013, 10:08 am

        Thanks Mark I appreciate your input

    • Paul
      April 14, 2014, 8:32 pm

      I agree with you. For me it is megafugly! Times 10! Everything seems so cramped, and, what is the point of hiding “everything” away if you have to shift other things continually to use a particular device.

      Would get real old, real quick.

      Can you imagine living in that Hong Kong apartment where you have to shift the walls all the time to do what you are going to do next? Let’s face it, if you are tired and want to flop down on your bed, shifting the kitchen and miscellaneous other temp units so you can pull down your bed… yadda, yadda, yadda… like I said, real old, real quick.

      • Kate
        April 15, 2014, 9:08 am

        having lived in small spaces, including Japan. You simply adapt… learn to live without all of the things we value so highly here as status symbols. You also, find yourself adding those touches of warmth that you miss. Having moved into such a home, void of what I thought was character, I transformed it into an oasis that my Japanese friends, mostly the wives, tried to emulate. Plus, I have noticed that these houses are shown with a minimal amount of decorations which lead most to conclude that they are stark and cold. It simply is just the way the Japanese like their homes. It isn’t about the structure as much as it is what you add to it. I absolutely LOVED my years there. Just my opinion… having lived there, we all have them. 🙂 Now living in a 9 x 9 space in Africa… that took some creativity, but, my place was unique warm and pleasant….

  • sesameB
    September 24, 2012, 12:21 pm

    I loved the futon being laid out for sleeping, nice by his mom.
    living tiny in rural Arkansas

  • jerryd
    September 25, 2012, 7:22 am

    News alert, ABC this morning has a great tiny house/apartment piece you’ll want to see.

  • Roseann
    November 2, 2012, 4:04 pm

    This is so neat! The sliding curtain doors are genius, something I’ll definitely think about adding to my own space.

  • Susanne
    October 14, 2017, 7:38 pm

    Wow, depressing! And 300,000! .

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