Furnishing an ADU: How to Pack it All into Your Backyard Unit

May 1, 2021 | Expert Advice

There’s abundant information out there on ADU building costs, financing, construction, and design – but there are few that help with the furnishing process. That is, until Mighty Buildings debuted its latest ADU pop-up, furnished with several multi-functional furniture pieces from the Resource collection to maximize comfort and functionality.

Resource partnered with LA-based manufacturer of high-tech 3D-printed ADUs, Mighty Buildings, to furnish their latest pop-up installation. Resource partnered with LA-based manufacturer of high-tech 3D-printed ADUs, Mighty Buildings, to furnish their latest pop-up installation.

ADUs and the Backyard Housing Boom

Granny flats, in-law suites, casitas — you may have heard these phrases without knowing the industry’s umbrella term: Accessory Dwelling Units. Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) have become more and more popular in recent years, especially in localities where eased zoning regulations have made them easier to build.

Homeowners are taking greater advantage of the relaxed rules. In 2016, after the California state legislature eased restrictions on ADU construction, applications for permits skyrocketed, setting off what came to be known as the Backyard Housing Boom. Many built ADUs to earn rental income, to use as a home office or guest house, or to provide a space for adult children or aging parents to live nearby.

As interest in ADUs grows, so too has the building technology. Mighty Buildings — an LA-based manufacturer of prefabricated homes and ADUs — utilizes patented 3D-printing technology and robotic automation to create luxury units at a fraction of the cost and with significantly shorter lead times compared to traditional construction methods. Mighty Buildings’ ADUs are pre-approved by the state of California and can be personalized to suit any lot size or budget.

While there are plenty of resources available for those interested in building an ADU, there are few that get into the nuts and bolts of how to furnish an ADU to maximize space and comfort. Mighty Buildings sought to change that, partnering with the space experts at Resource Furniture to design their latest pop-up ADU in downtown Los Angeles. The studio features a number of luxury amenities and transforming furnishings that make it look, feel, and function like a home twice its size. The pop-up is currently open for private tours, where visitors can experience the home’s transforming furnishings firsthand.

If you are looking to furnish your ADU or tiny home, here are some tips and product recommendations to keep in mind, straight from the design experts at Resource Furniture:

1. Maximize Space with Multipurpose Furniture

The Penelope Sofa wall bed allows this space to double as a comfortable living room and a bedroom. The Penelope Sofa wall bed allows this space to double as a comfortable living room and a bedroom.

Choose furniture pieces that serve more than a single purpose. The idea that furniture should serve only one purpose has virtually become passé. Whether you occupy a small studio apartment or a four-bedroom home, everyone can benefit from the added flexibility that multipurpose furniture provides. When square footage is particularly limited, like in an ADU, multifunctionality is essential. Outfitting your ADU with multipurpose furniture will allow you to live with all the comforts and amenities normally reserved for much larger homes — like an extra guest bedroom, a home office, space for a home gym, or even a large dining room table for holiday hosting.


Among our most popular multifunctional pieces are our transforming tables – consoles or coffee tables that are height-adjustable and extend in length and/or width, so you can guarantee guests a seat at the table for special occasions. Many models, such as the Dynamic, Passo, and Genie, are specifically designed to stash neatly under our wall beds, so there is never a need to move your table come bedtime.

Wall beds can also perform multiple functions when you choose a model that incorporates a sofa, desk, or dining table. Depending on the needs of your ADU, you can get double-duty out of a bed that would otherwise take up a considerable amount of floor space during the day, when it’s not being used. The Penelope Board, NuovoliolaSwing 0, or Oslo Sofa can work well in an ADU thanks to their built-in second function.

2. Open Up a Room with Storage Mirrors

Mirrors can help small spaces look much larger – and our mirrors do more than reflect. Mirrors are an age-old design trick; they create the illusion of more space while serving a useful purpose. Ambrogio, Betty, and Box are three unique wall-mounted mirrors that also double as organizers. While Box is designed to store table leaves for our Goliath or Voile expanding tables, Ambrogio opens to reveal a hidden storage unit perfect for stacking books, hanging coats, or storing toiletries. And Betty is not just a mirror, not a coat hanger, absolutely not a standard drawer unit — it is all three in one. This stunning multi-functional wall mirror features four removable coat hangers and five sliding drawers.

3. Utilize Vertical Space with Wall-Mounted Cabinets & Closets

Adopt creative storage solutions. Where floor space is at a premium, many ADU owners look for opportunities to configure built-in storage — for example, under-stair storage drawers or storage lofts above a free-standing closet. Another space-saving option is to consider modular, wall-mounted storage units like our Tetris Wall Cabinets. These clever cabinets can be oriented in any direction with hinges on either side for a vertical orientation, or top or bottom for a horizontal orientation.


Join us for an ADU Live Tour & Info Session!

Hungry for more tips and inspiration on furnishing ADUs? Join Resource and Mighty Buildings on Tuesday, June 1st at 1pm PDT | 2pm EDT for a live walkthrough of their latest LA pop-up unit. In this ADU info session, we will talk about different styling tips and techniques to furnish your backyard home. Come ready with questions for the live Q&A session!


Reimagining the Housing Stock through Innovative Design

Always at the forefront of innovative design solutions, Resource Furniture is proud to partner with Mighty Buildings to offer their clients exclusive furniture packages, each one custom-tailored specifically for their Mighty Buildings ADU.

Since we began developing our multi-functional furniture niche, we’ve been proactively looking into how we can positively impact the housing market and increase the affordable housing stock. We’ve worked with early adopters of small-space living like Graham Hill, furnished award-winning micro-apartment developments, and partnered with the National Building Museum on their Making Room exhibit.

Our latest collaboration with Mighty Buildings demonstrates how thoughtful design, paired with flexible furnishings, can allow even the smallest of spaces to function in many different capacities — all while offering incredible comfort and beauty.