Sponsored by Monsanto Company, its design and construction was overseen by Monsanto, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Walt Disney Imagineering. It was opened on June 12, 1957 and closed in December 1967, replaced by Alpine Gardens before being transformed into the Ariel's Grotto and Pixie Hollow meet and greet attractions.
The house itself, intended as a look at future living in the year 1986, would be furnished with a variety of technologies new at the time, such as a kitchen with a microwave oven and sonic dishwasher, adjustable height sinks in the bathroom, retractable refrigeration space, touch-tone phones, and more. The house received over 435,000 visitors within the first six weeks and would see around 20 million before it finally closed after 10 years.
The House of the Future would inspire similar exhibits at other Disney parks in later years.
In February 2008, Disney announced it would conceptually bring back the attraction with a more modern and accessible interior. The $15 million Innoventions Dream Home was a collaboration of The Walt Disney Company, Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard, software maker LifeWare, and homebuilder Taylor Morrison. It too would eventually close. It had such innovations as tables with TVs integrated into them and energy-efficient LED light bulbs and appliances.
- The building was so sturdy that demolition crews failed to demolish the house using wrecking balls, torches, chainsaws and jackhammers, the building was ultimately demolished by using choker chains to crush it into smaller parts. The reinforced polyester structure was so strong that the half-inch steel bolts used to mount it to its foundation broke before the structure itself did.
- Buzz Lightyear's house in Buzz Lightyear of Star Command was based on the House of the Future.
- The house is the subject of the House of Tomorrow episode of The Wonderful World of Mickey Mouse.
- As of 2019, the House's concrete foundation still stands in its original location, over five decades after the attraction's demolition. Now considered part of Fantasyland, the foundation is painted green and used as a decorative planter as part of Pixie Hollow.
- The Wonderful World of Mickey Mouse episode "House of Tomorrow" is set within the House of the Future.