Container Homes Would You Live In One?

I’m a bit bias in this because I am used to hotel working as a contractor, being able to fit everything into a bag or a suitcase is normal and with container homes its also getting into the same realms. But then I start looking at projects around the home as my type of work changed from hands on to a laptop and meetings. In reality the woodworking and other tools I collected are pretty much just gathering dust in the garage of my parents. Over £10,000 of equipment that aren’t even seeing regular maintenance never mind usage.

For the home they will never be needed again but it gets me to the DIY issues that crop up where people head down to the hardware store at the weekends to get all the bits and pieces to do a simple job. Talking to them they will say they can’t afford a professional yet what they have been buying says otherwise. The tools will often only be used once and the job never completed to a professional manner. If it is that normally means its taken longer than it should, in reality people exchange weekends for repairs. The best example I seen was the head of a university I was at when his kettle broke. He had started to repair it when he suddenly just threw it in the bin and got one ordered for next day delivery with our usual supplier of other goods. Why? Because his hourly rate was £50 per hour and its going to take him an hour to fix the kettle by the time he stripped it down, fixed it and put it back together again. Whilst buying a brand new kettle was less than £20 and at least it should work for another year or more.

This gets back to the argument of giving up weekends as time with friends and family are precious. We work hard all week why should we be taking up our time under the sink or repairing something else? A professional can come in and get the job done in half the time and although not going to be cheap it ma work out to save a lot of time in the long run and if done properly money as well.

Doesn’t mean don’t have a woodworking shed or some other hobby it just means if you are going to go to the hassles and cost of buying machinery and tools make sure your really going to use them. Otherwise its a waste of money,time and space. All in all its how most people live these days with a lot of stuff around them they hardly use. Even if not considering a shipping container home I bet there is plenty of things you could de-clutter your house with and benefit from it.

The world changed from being social to being more in a bubble, I don’t call Facebook or Twitter being social its text across the airwaves its not sitting in a library with real people or going to a local pub with friends. Its isolation in the modern age where people banter about the little things in life generally that most people aren’t interested in. Real social engagement seems to be unfashionable for many yet for humans it is normal. Shipping container villages have probably got more going for them in a community sense than most streets these days. If we look at caravans and trailer communities the bonds between people are a lot better than most neighbourhoods. One of these aspects is that limited space makes people spend time outside with others. Sitting on the porch talking to neighbours, community group meetings, children playing together many of these things have been removed from general society. Not all to do with what people live in but how things are built and how people interact.

Are Shipping Container Homes The Future?

You may be wondering yourself are shipping container homes the future? in reality its not far from the truth as we are looking at huge population growth world wide and possibly starting to have to think seriously about food sourcing and land use.

kowloon, Hong Kong, skyscraper

Hong Kong is the best example I can think of where shipping container homes would be an acceptable use of construction for housing as many of the properties there already fit into the criteria dimension wise. Land is expensive due to being regulated to specific areas which for me makes a lot of sense as long as the density doesn’t get out of control.

Living in a shoe box as some people would phrase it may not be the way most people want to live but at the same time I have found I would rather have larger outdoor spaces than indoor. Give me a garden over a porch any day!

It takes me back to school when someone asked a teacher of mine why they have a small bag and his response was because its full, if I had a bigger bag it would still be full but this way I make sure I have what I need with me at all times and anything else isn’t that important.

He was right and this is how people live in many ways with a big bag, we have lounges, dining rooms, hallways, conservatories,porches,games rooms etc. etc. in reality do we need them?

Personally I think its led to social decline as I would much rather play pool (billiards!) in a bar than in my games room which may mean half the time I play alone. I would much rather have a communal pool that has a life guard than a private pool especially after living in a country that has a strong divide between rich and poor. The community spirit got zapped over the last few years as we got into this economic mess and consumer culture. We lost sight of the fact we don’t need most of this stuff and in fact we let many things fall into decline like community swimming pools and libraries things that once were and should be the backbone of a society.

So are shipping container homes the future? I hope so as it brings in a new phase of responsible living. It brings in a new society that functions and wants to be together, building bonds together and concerns for each other. The demise of “hello” being the only word you spoke to your neighbour and instead a game of cricket with the kids in the evening as a community. We need at least the concept of the modular space of a shipping container to be the home of the future with its outside spaces being utilized properly to form up real communities. Alienation of sub groups has created many of the problems in society yet we have a solution that could work at our finger tips.