Designed as “one house for life”, this terrace grows with you. A young couple can let the upper floors to pay their mortgage; then occupy the whole house as their family grows; and finally retire back to the ground floor while rent from upstairs funds their pension. That’s because the three floors in Lifecycle House can be used independently or together. Each level has a bathroom, outside space (in the shape of a courtyard, a balcony or a roof garden) and independent access off the straight stairs that run from front to back — freeing up floor space. Wide pocket doors and full-height windows in almost all rooms add a sense of light and space. The ground-floor layout, around a courtyard garden, means the houses can be built back to back. This allows for 75 four-bedroom homes per hectare — more than double the density of most new developments. Built on a highly insulated, cross-laminated timber frame, with brick cladding, bronze anodised aluminium windows and ground-source heat pumps, each house would cost about £350,000.