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What Life’s Actually Like in a Container Home?

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For many years now shipping containers have become popular for other purposes besides transportation and storage. These days they are refashioned and repurposed for all manner of new ideas, and one of the most popular is using new or used shipping containers to build houses and home extensions.

For people who have heard of this idea and are contemplating doing the same, you are likely wondering what it’s like to live in a shipping container home, asking questions like:

  • Will it be comfortable?
  • Will a house made from containers be an eyesore?
  • Will the home get really hot or cold?
  • Will the house simply be too small?
  • And so on…

This post will take a snapshot of what life can be like living in a shipping container home, and why building a home from cargo containers is a good idea.

Jump To:
You Can Make Your Home As Big As You Like
Container Homes Are Insulated
Are Shipping Container Homes Noisy?
Will A Container Home Be Ugly?
Why Are People Building Homes From Shipping Containers

You Can Make Your Home As Big As You Like

The fantastic thing about building with shipping containers is they go together like a Lego set. They are very uniform in shape and size and are really big rectangular blocks of steel. Much of the construction is already done before any conversion even takes place, and containers are built super tough.

As far as the size of your home goes, this really depends on your budget and how much space you have to work with. You can build a container home three storeys high if you like, or have the entire house on ground level. It’s up to you.

Some people choose to go the tiny house route and build a really small house from just one 20 foot container. This won’t suit everybody, but it’s doable.

If you purchase two 40 foot containers, you can actually construct a fairly decent sized home. And remember, not all of the home’s construction has to be made up of shipping containers. You can add in some regular construction as well to expand the footprint of your home.

The point is, a home built from shipping containers doesn’t have to be small and cramped, which is a common misconception. In fact, you can create a massive, spacious home out of brand new or second-hand shipping containers.

Container Homes Are Insulated

Just like with any other kind of home people build, a house made primarily from shipping containers can be insulated to regulate the internal temperature.

When you imagine a house built out of steel boxes, it’s only natural to assume that it would be blazing hot in summer and freezing cold in winter. If you lived in a container as is, that would be pretty true, but container homes are a lot more sophisticated than that.

Living in a home made from containers is just as comfortable from a climate point of view as residing in a conventional house. You’ll be warm in winter and cool in summer, so long as your house is also equipped with some climate control (air conditioning and heating).

Are Shipping Container Homes Noisy?

Whether a home is noisy or not often depends on how much stuff is in the house, whether the floors are hard or carpeted and many other factors.

Once your container home is built and decked out, it likely won’t just be a series of metal walls and ceilings. There will be coverings on many of the internal walls, such as plasterboard, just like a regular house. Floors might be timber, tiles or carpet, just like a regular house, and it will also be filled with furniture and possessions, just like a regular house. You’ll also have windows, curtains or blinds, and doorways, just like a regular house.

At the end of the day, your shipping container home is a regular house, but instead of building it the conventional way, much of the construction is made up from shipping containers that have been modified to suit their new purpose.

Will a Container Home Be Ugly?

This is another common misconception, where people think the interior and exterior will look like some rusted out metal box.

If you want some easy proof that container homes don’t look like gross metal hulks, just do a quick search of shipping container homes in Google Images and you’ll soon see an array of fantastic looking container homes, inside and out.

Some of the most stunning homes you’ve ever laid eyes on have been built with shipping containers making up the bulk of the construction. With many of the houses, you can’t even tell that containers were used.

Why Are People Building Homes From Shipping Containers?

Shipping containers are a remarkable building material, and that’s why they’ve become such a popular idea in recent years when it comes to repurposing and recycling cargo containers. They are extremely versatile and very cost-effective.

That last point is the biggest selling point: using shipping containers saves massive amounts of money on construction costs, and because much of the build is already in place, construction time is shaved back quite a lot as well.

If you are using second-hand shipping containers for your house construction, then you are also helping save the planet by stopping these containers from eventually ending up as useless landfill.

Container homes are extremely strong and robust because of their steel framework and walls. They are also very easy to modify in whatever way you need them to be.

The Takeaway

As more and more people become aware of the possibilities of building with shipping containers, the more popular the concept is becoming.

It’s the dream of most people in the world to own their own home, and one of the most cost-effective and versatile ways to build a new house is by using containers.

Shipping container homes are just as comfortable and luxurious as any other home out there. It’s simply a matter of viewing some examples to discover what’s possible.

To learn more it’s best to have a chat with a shipping container supplier that also performs container modifications.

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