Laneway houses have been allowed in Vancouver since 2009, and it looks like they’re being used as a way to help adult parents get their kids in on Vancouver’s real estate market, according to a recent article in the Vancouver Sun.

Smallworks is one of Vancouver’s top laneway builders, and their VP of Marketing, Michael Lyons, says that at least half of his customers are building the tiny homes for their kids.

“They can’t afford to buy in the neighbourhood where they grew up. People want to stay close to their family,” he told the Sun.

With the cost of a laneway home about $250,000 to $270,000, it’s a much more affordable option than purchasing a new home in Vancouver’s west side and other well-established neighbourhoods. While additional costs include properly taxes, and insurance, the price tag is still reasonable compared to the properties they’re attached, too. Laneway houses also add about $300,000 of value to a property.

And it’s good news for the rental scene as well, since laneway dwellers aren’t taking up rental units for others. On average, they rent out for $1,700 – $2,000 a month on Vancouver’s west side.

“This allows people to live closer to where they work, play and go to school. It also provides more rental units in city that is very short on rental houses,” Lyons said. “People are getting used to seeing these in their neighbourhood. People see them and think, “That would be really good for us.’ ”

All this talk of laneway houses got us curious about some of the best ones out there. Here’s a few of the stand-out laneway home designs we’ve laid our eyes on…

This teeny tiny home can be found in Toronto.

We love this mini-home in Kerrisdale, Vancouver!

This adorable little cottage laneway home can be found in Oconomowoc, USA.

And the one that started it all — Vancouver’s first laneway home.

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