- They are a different look
- They are inexpensive
- They are easy to build
- They are eco-friendly
Think of them as being similar to playing with building blocks when you were a kid. First a foundation is poured just as it would be with any site-build structure and the containers are placed on that foundation in various designs and set-ups. Once they are in place, either one lay or stacked, you have the framework for a commercial or residential property.
Then the process of making it a usable structure begins. Opening for doors and windows are cut and then the walls are insulated. Then doors and windows are installed and there is your new home or office building.
Because shipping containers are a modular shape already, they allow you to easily attach and stack them, making each home or office its own style and not a cookie cutter style as most of today’s structures are.
Depending on what part of the country you are in, 40-feet shipping container is around $1,000 each. So not only does that make it inexpensive to build, but inexpensive to add-on if needed later.
The Skepticism of Shipping Container Homes
However, there are some that have expressed skepticism of this new fad. Some of their concerns are:
- Steel is a high-heat conductivity, therefore requires top grade insulation. The fact is, they don’t require any more insulation than a home built of brick or wood.
- Health concern in regards to the flooring which have carried harmful chemicals. In actuality, before construction starts, the original flooring is removed.
Shipping containers have proven to be a great source for emergency shelter too, such as in Japan recently. After an earthquake and tsunami, 100,000 people were left homeless. Container homes provided them a place to stay and some privacy as well.
Here in the United States, the concept of using container homes for housing has taken off as well as in other countries. However, because of the economic benefits, green eco-friendly practices of recycling and the sustainability they offer, we should be seeing more and more of them.