One of the more niche trends in sustainable design of the past few years has been the re-use of shipping containers in order to create the structure of a building. Due to their convenient size, shipping containers are well-suited for use in houses and their appeal lies in their apparent simplicity: you get a room delivered in one piece, and you can stack them together to make multiple rooms or join them up to make larger rooms.
But of course, things are never so simple, and using shipping containers to make a house is still fraught with challenges – particularly as the idea is still relatively new, so there are few people with the expertise required to build one without a hitch. That’s why the folks over at Container Home Plans reached out to 23 experts from around the world – designers and owners who have overcome the challenges to build their own container houses – to ask them what they wish they’d known before taking on this challenge. Check out their 11 top tips after the break.
The one thing that I wished I had not done was buy my containers without seeing them – I took the company’s word that they would be in good shape. They were beat all to heck.I wish I had known that it doesn’t cost that much more for a One-Trip container and they are like brand new.
Every country has its own sets of rules and standards. This means a container house in US does not look like a container house in Denmark. That is something most people do not think about. The container is a generic product, but climate, fire regulations etc are not.
The one thing we would have done differently would have been to find one contractor to help the whole process versus having one for getting and modifying the containers, and another to finish out the interior.
We did not expect so much wind in the site and are now having to screen off the wind with vegetation as the container makes a bit of noise when there are large gusts of wind.