Shipping container house – Why should you consider it?
Living In Container Houses
The use of wood, bricks, and cement as house construction materials is quite expensive these days. Adding to the costs of constructing a home are labor, architectural design, land and building permits.
Delays in construction caused by unanticipated factors can add more to the problems of building a home.
The application of shipping containers as container houses was discovered as an alternative to the traditional way of building a house. Shipping containers (also called intermodal containers) are strong, 20 to 40 feet long steel boxes used for transporting large cargoes across lands and seas. Size, strength, and durability in withstanding the toughest of transport and weather conditions made housing experts and environmentalists notice the containers’ potential as a substitute to established methods of building homes. Thousands have been left on empty lots as soon as their 10 to 15-year limit of use is up, offering the promise of cheaper homes to a lot of people.
Interest is rising on shipping containers’ use as a shelter alternative and several of the reasons why it is given a much more serious attention lately include:
From brand new or single use to abandoned, shipping containers are conveniently available as they are the default containers when it comes to the transport of large-scale materials via ship, truck or train. Each year thousands are abandoned, and all are potential container homes. A brand new or a one-time use container can be ordered if a customer wishes it. The containers are for the picking and it would be a waste if they are not used for shelter construction.
2. Strength and durability
One 40-foot container is made up of 3,500 kilograms of steel, making the container resistant to different conditions of the land and weather. It can withstand floods, fires, and hurricanes if the container home is properly built.
Observers believe that the shipping containers are above specifications. Meaning that the steel used is more than enough than what is required for a form of shelter.
3. Modification before delivery
Companies that modify shipping containers into container houses perform the modifications at their factories right away. Any design the customer wishes can be applied. Building inspection is done on the factory site, making applications for construction permits easier and more convenient. The house is practically finished when it is delivered and installed on its permanent site.
This feature is particularly important for people living in remote areas where accessibility to materials and labor is scarce and costly. The container can be modified in urban or industrial areas and delivered to the outskirts of the city and installed with less money, workers, and materials involved.
4. Ease in design and construction
The containers’ standard size and weight provide convenience in designing and building a home. The containers are built to interlock into place and can be conveniently stacked on top of each other like toy blocks. Time of construction is shorter than the conventional way of building a traditional house due to fewer workers and the number of construction materials used.
5. Ease in delivery
Shipping containers as a means of delivery were designed to make its transport on trucks, ships or trains fast and convenient. The size and shape of the containers were meant to fit exactly at the back of trucks, on train cars, and at cargo spaces of ships. Its design to make delivery fast and efficient is built-in. Standard, pre-fabricated or modified, the container homes can be delivered anywhere and within a short time.
6. Flexible in design
Despite its standard features, the containers’ appearance can be altered by the addition of windows, sliding doors and other attachments. Often, container homes are pre-fabricated with its designs already installed prior to its delivery to its permanent site. Steel bars are used for additional support in case large sized windows or doors are added.
7. Low labor costs
The installation of a container home requires special tools in welding, boring, and cutting of steel making it appear that the job is labor intensive and expensive. Modern equipment, less foundation and carpentry work make working on container houses faster and cheaper than traditional construction.
8. Room for expansion
The stacking and connecting ability when being used as cargo transport are the same features that offer the potential to expand a container house. From a one floor to a three-floor dwelling or opting to increase floor area, the options are unlimited as long as vertical or horizontal space is available. Multiple stacks of containers can be converted into apartments or townhouses by using special bolts to safely anchor the structure.
9. Being green friendly
People are being conscious about taking care of the environment and are now finding ways on how to reduce the use and release of carbon to the atmosphere. One way is to find the possibility of building homes with recycled materials and one of the options is building container homes.
For every single 40-foot container that is converted into a house, 3,500 kilograms of steel is saved. A lot of energy is conserved in avoiding the dismantling, melting, and recycling of steel. Pollution from recycling is prevented, making the environment safer to live in. The more containers used for houses, apartments or townhomes, the better the environment is preserved.
10. Low cost of construction
Affordability is the reason why the interest in using shipping containers as permanent homes is increasing. Second-hand containers converted into container houses are a lot cheaper than buying a house in a city or in the suburbs. Lesser labor and a minimal installation of foundations (if any) is a factor that containers have that conventional wood-brick-cement houses don’t.
Being versatile, affordable, and environment-friendly makes the use of shipping containers as container houses a definite alternative to the much more costly building of wood-brick-cement houses. Millions of containers are left abandoned and left to rust on yards across the planet. Stackable and convenient, they can provide thousands of cheap low to medium rise homes for people in need of permanent shelter.