ideabox, based in Salem, Oregon, is a prefab housing design studio that builds modular homes that are energy efficient and affordable, and designed to be "lively yet relaxing, small yet big, warm yet cool and most of all simply fun".

Where Project Frog, another prefab design studio, designs for larger buildings like schools and stores, ideabox focuses on compact homes ranging from the minibox at 200 ft2 (~20m2) to the confluence 3 at 1470 ft2 (150m2).

The "northwest", the house that started ideabox, proves that "small footprint living by ideabox can be a pretty big thing".

ideabox offers a "design phase" with each customer to assist on everything from placement of the home and necessary permits to customizing the size and style of the house.  The home arrives prefabricated in one or two pieces - prefabrication allows less material waste and less energy consumption than building on-site.

Moreover, ideabox houses are designed for ultimate energy efficiency - including Energy Star appliances, LED light-fixtures, and water efficient pipes.

ideabox recently partnered with IKEA to present the aktiv, a new line of houses designed by ideabox around IKEA systems - 745 ft2 (76m2) for ~$86,500.

ideabox is also designing prefab floating homes with its drift series:

Like the ReVolt house, a solar-powered floating home, ideabox's drift series will be important for the development of floating communities that we are seeing in the Netherlands and coastal areas.

Since the recession, small houses are making a comeback, especially for young couples who not only are trying to save money, but are interested in reducing their carbon footprint.

ideabox is also targeting retired seniors who are looking to downsize in space with its resort-inspired "micro neighborhood", a pilot called Cottages@Camelot which is being launched in Eugene, Oregon.

ideabox was launched in 2006, and has since sold 30 houses.