Houses that defy gravity - Dalston House

Photo: Jellybeanz/Flickr

Dalston House in London, England

Created by Leandro Erlich, this public art installation uses an optical illusion to make it appear like people are climbing the walls of the house.

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Houses that defy gravity - Single Hauz

Image courtesy of Frontarchitects

Single Hauz, designed by Frontarchitects

Single Hauz is an inhabitable billboard-style home that takes up very little space and can be built virtually anywhere. Perfect for a single tenant, Single Hauz embraces minimalist living.

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Houses that defy gravity - Villa Kogelhof

Photo: © Jeroen Musch/Paul de Ruiter Architects

Villa Kogelhof in Kamperland, The Netherlands

Villa Kogelhof doesn't just balance in the literal sense; this energy neutral house was designed by Paul de Ruiter Architects to balance its energy input and output.

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Houses that defy gravity - Heliotrope

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Heliotrope in Freiburg, Germany

The solar-powered Heliotrope goes beyond energy neutral as the world's first energy positive home: it actually creates its own renewable energy, without emissions. Designed by German architect Rolf Disch, the structure rotates for the most efficient exposure to the sun.

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Houses that defy gravity - Berman House

Photo: leaaaah/Flickr

The Berman House in Joadja, Australia

Designed by Harry Seidler, the Berman House stretches out on a rocky cliff over a valley.

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Houses that defy gravity - Cube Houses

Photo: Dietmut Teijgeman-Hansen/Flickr

Cube houses (Kubuswoningen) in Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Dutch architect Piet Blom used trees as an inspiration for this village of sorts, perfect for high-density, mixed-use living.

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Houses that defy gravity - Residences in Glyfadda

Photo courtesy of 314 Architecture Studio

Residences in Glyfada, Greece

A product of 314 Architecture Studio, this building that lines the Glyfada Golf Course is another energy efficient model, containing three 3-bedroom residences.

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Houses that defy gravity - Korowai tree house

Photo: Markus Fleute/Flickr

Korowai tree houses

The Korowai people of southeastern Papua live in treehouses among the canopy of the dense vegetation.

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Houses that defy gravity - Mushroom Tea House

Photo: Kevin Trotman/Flickr

The Mushroom House in Cincinnati, Ohio

This one-bedroom house was created by architect Terry Brown. It's also known as the TreeHouse.

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Houses that defy gravity - Steel House

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Steel House in Ransom Canyon, Texas

The cavernous look of architectural sculptor Robert Bruno's Steel House almost makes it seem as though it belongs to the natural scenery. But from the outside, viewers wonder about its stability.

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Houses that defy gravity - Sutyagin

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Sutyagin House in Arkhangelsk, Russia

Also known as the Gangster House, the Sutyagin House stood 13 stories tall and was completely made out of wood. Its precarious structure challenged the laws of gravity until it was demolished in 2008.

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Houses that defy gravity - Fujimori tea houses

Photo: Kenta Mabuchi'Flickr; Takato Murui/Flickr; Jacomejp/Flickr

Terunobu Fujimori's Tea Houses

The imagination of architect Terunobu Fujimori comes alive in his suspended and perched tea houses, which sit in perfect balance among the treetops.

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Houses that defy gravity - Upside-Down house

Photo:Ken Gordon/Flickr

Upside Down House in Szymbark, Poland

Visitors can walk inside the roof's window and see a house furnished 1970s-style, with socialist propaganda displayed on the old television.

"This house is a warning about the path we are taking," designer Daniel Czapiewski said in a YouTube video. "Mankind is spoiling this world and only mankind can fix it."

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Houses that defy gravity - Athens House

Photo courtesy of 314 Architecture Studio

H3 House in Athens, Greece

Another 314 Architecture Studio design, this house uses the elements to create an environmentally-friendly abode.

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Houses that defy gravity - Spirit Sphere

Photo: agata/Flickr

Free Spirit Spheres in British Columbia, Canada

Similar to sailboats in design and tree nuts in shape, Free Spirit Spheres can be rented for less than a hotel room in the city, with the added bonus of being rocked to sleep with gently blowing wind.

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Houses that defy gravity - Errante's guest house

Photo: Sue W/Flickr

Hospedería del Errante in Chile

Though it may look like it has suffered from some kind of natural disaster, this house is actually inhabitable.

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Houses that defy gravity - Pod House

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Pod House in Perinton, N.Y.

This structure was created in the early 1970s and stands today as both a town landmark and a private residence. Each of the four pods has a specific purpose, and altogether they form a 3-bedroom, 3-bathroom house.

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Anna Norris is an associate editor at Mother Nature Network. Follow her on Twitter and Google+.
17 houses that defy gravity
These gravity-defying houses have trumped traditional standards with their inventive architecture.