Shipping containers most likely conjure up a mental image of greasy, salty shipyards and rusting metal. While that doesn’t quite say “home sweet home” these steel structures are the next big thing in affordable, trendy housing.
Keep reading for all the information you’ll need on building your very own custom container home.
What Are Container Homes?
Container homes have recently soared in popularity due to their versatility, cost, and trendy aesthetics. It’s pretty straightforward: this affordable housing option sees single or multiple stacked shipping containers repurposed as living spaces. One might be hesitant to call a shipping container home, but with some savvy interior design and simple building, you’ll wonder why you ever lived in a “normal” house.
When it comes to container homes your options are endless. They’re fully customizable and, because they don’t use traditional foundations, finding a location for your container home is a breeze.
Why Are Container Homes So Popular?
Housing costs are already through the roof and they’re only increasing. We’ve already mentioned the affordability of custom container homes, but their appeal goes beyond their price.
As more people begin to embrace the life of a digital nomad, these homes are the perfect fit. They are transient but trendy. They’re as compact as you want them to be and perfect for the simple, clutter-free life that’s fast becoming the norm.
Container homes have even become popularised through Instagram influencers, whose ultra-chic living spaces are the envy of millions of followers.
There are tons of Instagram accounts and Pinterest boards devoted to container home living that’ll provide some aesthetic inspiration, as well as motivation to embark on your own container-living journey.
Should I Get a Custom Container Home?
If we’ve sparked your interest in small-space living, you might be wondering if a container home is right for you. Here are a few more benefits to having a container home.
We’ve touched on how shipping container homes stack up when it comes to affordable housing. But just how much cheaper are they?
The answer is, well, a lot.
To put things into perspective, the median cost of buying a house in the US in 2020 was $327, 100.
A shipping container home won’t cost you nearly as much. It’s difficult to name an exact price, as shipping containers vary in size, and it depends on how many people will be using the space. Recently a fully-functional off-grid shipping container home was built in the Czech Republic for $21, 000!
Speedy Construction and Better Materials
Small container homes take less than half the time to construct in comparison to houses. The most important step is buying the right shipping container for your needs and then designing the ideal custom set-up for your space. Once this is done, your home could be ready in just a couple of weeks!
Plus, you’ll save a ton of money on building materials. There’s no need to dig costly foundations and pay for bricks and concrete. Shipping containers are made of durable, sturdy steel. That means you’ll mostly have to worry about internal finishings.
Custom Container Homes: Step by Step
If you’re set on container home living, you might be wondering how to get started. We’ve outlined a few easy steps and considerations for building your dream custom container home. From deciding on containers to the finer details, this is all the info you’ll need.
Now’s the time to decide on size, shape, and layout. Are you happy with a cosy single container? Or are you envisioning stacked and connected containers for a multi-roomed mini-mansion?
Shipping containers come in a variety of sizes ranging from 8 to 53 feet. The size, or sizes, you choose to depend entirely on your budget and your building vision.
While it is possible to buy used shipping containers, we highly recommend that you buy a new container. This is because used containers may be covered in harmful chemicals used to protect them from corrosion in transit.
There are a few reputable companies offering Conex boxes for sale. These companies often offer nationwide delivery and you can usually get a quote upfront.
Location and Laws
This relatively new housing trend hasn’t quite found its feet in terms of laws and regulations. Always check your local building codes and zoning restrictions to make sure your container home isn’t breaking any rules.
Because they don’t require traditional foundations, container homes can be placed on terrain that wouldn’t usually be built on. This includes uneven, rocky land. This makes container housing a whole lot more versatile than a traditional house.
The Nitty Gritty Necessities
In your planning, factor in where pipes and electrical lines will be installed, and make sure that adequate holes are drilled in your container. Once this is done, plumbing and electricity can be installed as normal.
Insulating your container home can be a bit tricky due to the shallow depth of the container walls. It isn’t impossible but might take a bit of time and innovation.
Finishings and Interior
Now for the fun part! You get to truly customize your shipping container home to your specifications. Deciding on an aesthetic direction is a lot easier when your space is compact.
Keep things simple with a monotone base and a pop of color. Shipping containers are best painted using a spray gun and two coats. Remember, darker colors on the wall will make a space look smaller, so try and stick to lighter hues.
If you’re in need of more inspiration, a quick search for ‘shipping container homes’ on Pinterest will give you some solid decor foundations.
We Can’t Contain Our Excitement!
Custom container homes tick all of the boxes in terms of style, affordability, and convenience. They also give you the freedom to design your dream living space and make it happen fast.
If you enjoyed this article, check out our home improvement section for more great ideas on maximizing your living space.
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