Tiny Homes of the Future

A pair of New Yorkers living in a 175-square-foot studio might just be the wave of the future.

Zaarath and Christopher Prokop don't cook in their own kitchen. They "store" most of their clothes at dry cleaners. A cappuccino machine is their only kitchen appliance, and a cat-gym and a queen-sized bed are almost the only furniture. But the Prokops (shown left) say that they're happy with their home, which cost them $150,000 a few months ago. With two full-time jobs, they'll have paid off the mortgage in just two years, according to the New York Post.

The Prokop's lifestyle is not for everyone - it wouldn't work without nearby dry cleaners and restaurants. But with a little design help, tiny homes like the Prokop's -- or the wee Japanese single-family home pictured below --- could fill a big gap in the housing market, particularly for students and singles in expensive cities.