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At Australasia's largest home show in Auckland, going tiny is big

The largest home show in Australasia is underway in Auckland this week, with 45,000 visitors expected in its five days.

And it's not just the grand designs on show. Experts on small spaces are there as well, as more people look to downsize.

"People are finding they can't get into the housing market - mainly because of price and location," said designer Laura Lochhead from PocketSpace Interior.

"So the small space movement is an appealing option. And whether that's downsizing from a huge house into an apartment or into a tiny house, it's about living with less but gaining more."

It's not just young adults wanting to downsize, said Robbie McIntosh, an expert on space-saving products. He's found there's also a big market with the baby boomer generation.

"They want to go smaller, but they want quality," he said.

One Cantabrian has found an inventive way to find an affordable place to live. Source: Breakfast

His two businesses combined, Tiltaway Beds NZ and MiniKitchens NZ, have up to 20 clients per week.

You don't need a lot of space to be satisfied, he said, explaining that people "can boil the jug, they can cook a meal, they can do whatever they want" in the smaller kitchens he specialises in.

And little homes don't have to miss out on gardens either, said landscaping expert Jules Moore.

In fact, small spaces can actually look much better than a big space, she said, acknowledging that "it means your design has to be a little more onto it".

With apartment dwellings on the rise, she's noticed "living walls" are popular.

"If you have a living wall next to your balcony, then you've got some foliage and you feel good," she said.

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Ms Lochhead, the designer from PocketSpace Interior, shared the sentiment that smaller is better these days.

"It's about changing people's mindsets and living more strategically, rather than with a whole lot of stuff they don't need," she said. "We don't need a whole lot now. We don't need a dedicated study - we can do it from our lounge".

Auckland's home show is on until Sunday at Greenlane's ASB Showgrounds.

About 45,000 people are expected to show up at the ASB Showgrounds in Auckland for the five-day event. Source: 1 NEWS