Shipping Container Home–Ideal First Home

I moved out to the Philippines due to thoughts running through my head in 2007 that firstly the housing markets were overpriced but secondly there was no starter homes being built to get me on the ladder to pay off the debt 100% within 10 years. Instead I was looking at homes bigger than I needed which in turn would leave me up to my neck in debt as well as expensive heating and electricity bills for space I would under utilize. All these were signs the world had gone housing mad based on presuming more people would be paying more at the bottom to feed the obsession of profit on houses at the top.

In reality it wasn’t and isn’t sustainable and the collapse of the markets today show it to be fact. Problem is now banks are lending less money to less people where do you get on the ladder to start with? Homes are often still too big for first time buyers due to budget restraints yet shipping container homes could be the alterative for low cost housing. I have to admit though I don’t think low cost has to equal low quality.

Advantages of low cost housing using shipping containers is that your development can be done in phases and done correctly adding enough insulation in the walls to make the home have a great insulation property from not only the elements but sound proofed. Adding to that designing the house round the environment it exists is also an important factor. For example living plant walls or shade provide a way to shield the house if in the country side making it pretty difficult to notice its even there. Same as constructing along mountain sides or other locations that obscure the fact the home is there. On a city front colours can be used to brighten up the location or blend it into its surroundings all adapting to existing buildings in the area.

Most importantly the footprint is small in square metres allowing land to be purchased for the task at reasonable cost or should I say could even be bought cash in some cases. Allowing the budget to also be phased in over time. As the budget allows you can adapt construction to it matching the funding to the containers being bought so that the first container offers up a 1 – 2 bedroom small functional home which is limited but once a second level is added you can expand the home out and continue to rise 3 – 4 storeys high on a small piece of land.

Planning issues may be an initial problem which is why I request anyone with photos to share the homes they have built and how they got round any doubts town planners had on your projects.

I believe shipping container homes can give homes to families on limited budgets just as much as it can give homes to an eco friendly couple or architect looking to win a design prize. They are a housing solution being embraced in many countries already but with the excess containers at ports this could be a recycling project that can solve both housing and the dumping of the containers no longer needed.

Shipping container house in Japan

This video is a bit different to the rest simply because its taking on some of Japan’s traditional ideas for open space. The roof structure is also a bit different to everything else as it appears to have a complete set of scaffold poles that have carried a porch like space right over the container in all directions. Maximises space but not sure of its practicalities but only time would tell. Here in Cebu we get heavy rain in the Wet season so a separated roof would actually have some benefits on noise reduction at the same time I would have to look at its justification on costs as well as how it would fair in heavy winds.

The bathroom layout is fairly practical on this one and appears smaller than others I have seen as its gone for the 8ft width with a long bathroom (entrance from external) instead of the other way round which most people seem to do. The hollow block walls that seem to make up the dividers seem a bit overkill for me though its finish would look very clean.

 

Japanese shipping container home

Shipping container homes in the Philippines projects

The blog has been a little quiet lately but its not doing to a lack of things going on but the reverse. Several interested parties has stepped forward for various construction projects all of which I am now knocking up drawings and ideas for how far the projects will go we will have to wait and see currently its just in the early stages but can see it developing well if it gets taken seriously especially by local government as a housing solution. There are several reasons I am keen to do low cost housing including giving people dignity and pride in their home which should hopefully tie in with other projects to make a sustainable higher standard of living possible. On top of that shipping container class rooms are also on the cards as well as an interesting swimming pool idea so all in all its getting pretty busy. I will share some of the 3D images once I have finished the designs but I would request donations if you decide to use any of the sketches or drawings purely towards building the beach house container house here which will be fully online from start to finish to show you how to build it yourself. Currently we are looking at an initial budget of P100,000 for the unit and construction.

Just wanted to post an update on ongoing things as people may wonder where I disappeared to.

Practical Houseboat for lake use

A floating home which appears mainly from timber construction but offers an interesting design for a home on waterways. No doubt could be adapted if not already to utilize sustainable materials. The home was actually prefabricated and travelled from the contractors workshop from another location on the lake. Although the timber frame also makes this a lighter home for construction, I am sure that shipping containers could be used in the same way as the shape of the home could easily be adapted to shipping container usage for recycling containers at the same time if looking to do something similar. Here in the Philippines for example timber isn’t always practical due to cost as well as termites. Which is the main reason most construction here is done in concrete.Practical Houseboat for lake usePractical Houseboat for lake usePractical Houseboat for lake use

Most people think of prefab construction as being off-site pieces assembled on site – floating a whole house was quite a task but saved time, energy and money in the long run. It is a rare building that can be more cheaply built to float than to sit on land.

Share your shipping container project

This blog came about due to looking to build our home here in the Philippines as well as looking into the viability of shipping container homes for low cost housing. Currently the low cost housing is looking more likely to go with modular kits due to the logistic issues of shipping containers and the purchase price of used containers in the Philippines. This sort of slows our projects currently down to a snails pace as we start to look for land capable of dropping container units onto as generally for the budget we have the land is very uneven and access difficult by road.

But this also gives a platform for people to send in their own projects and designs to share them with everybody else if your interested. Building the blog site as more of a community rather than a single writer is important to showing other alternatives and ideas of shipping container home developments and we want you to be part of it.

If you would like to submit an article please email matt_wilkie@hotmail.co.uk

shipping container office (32 inter connected containers) Road Island – Box Office 460

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Boxoffice460

This is a rather interestingly designed building that makes a colourful modern statement. Built from 32 recycled shipping containers it offers 12 office/studio units for business rentals. Constructed on a waste piece of land in road island previously the Harris Lumber yard. you can see how swiftly the construction came about in the video below. Another reason why shipping containers make an ideal modular framework.

Shipping Container Car Showrooms

These car showrooms are a practical example of how a shipping container module can be used. I have also worked with a company in the UK previously that use the outer steel frames you see here that form an open sided shell that slot walls drop into. This is probably based on the same technology but still using the shipping container size and weights for transportation. A small 7.5 ton truck with attached crane can move these and deliver one at a time. Making it not only cost affective for construction but also transportation.

Shipping Container Car Showroom Shipping Container Car Showroom

 Shipping Container Car Showroom Shipping Container Car Showroom

Petrol Station Built In Shipping Container

Shipping container petrol station (Gas station / Fuel station)

Petrol Station (Gas station) Koboko district, west nile region uganda

May seem a little odd for some as the fuel consumption of cars are pretty high. But I have seen similar units for sale here in the Philippines aswell because they are ideal for more remote areas that mainly use motorbikes or have low fuel consumption due to lack of vehicles in the area that wouldn’t justify a large scale petrol station at the same time this type is probably less likely to pollute the ground as working in the industry years ago underground tanks had a habit of rusting and leaking over the years which is why they are removed due to contamination issues in the ground.

Container home – Kharkov Ukraine

The design of the house is simple but elegant using the hillside at the back of the property as a footing allowing also to be used possibly as a wind break from the elements. The openness of the surrounding area allows for the property to have some beautiful views to the pool side of the property. This was part of the design to give 180 degrees of viewing of the surrounding areas giving it a more natural feel to the property.

The decked pool area also gives another area to relax and building the pool long and narrow gives the ability of swimming lengths without too much waste of space. As well as in keeping with the container design of the home.

shipping container home - Kharkov, Ukraine shipping container home - Kharkov, Ukraine shipping container home - Kharkov, Ukraine shipping container home - Kharkov, Ukraine

Interesting container concept – Steele Design’s Escape P.O.D.

Steele Design’s Escape P.O.D. s are made for landowners who wish to start enjoying country living without the expense of building a traditional house and want the advantage of very fast construction

There are some interesting design aspects of Steele Design’s Escape P.O.D. namely the use of natural ventilation although have a concern about roof removal of a container and also if tropical like here the overhangs would be better further out for not only catching more cool air to cool the building but also to prevent a soaking if there is heavy rainfall and a side wind. Concept is good though very minimalistic but no doubt could be easily functional.