With four shipping container homes under his belt, Tim Steele, of Steele House Designs, has become a fierce advocate for transforming these freight storage units into elemental building blocks. Steele lists the top five reasons to pick shipping containers:
Each 40-foot shipping container can hold 64,000 pounds. The containers get welded to plates that are cast into the foundation or footings to anchor them, which makes them far stronger than a “stick-built” house, which is a great advantage for areas susceptible to high winds and storms.
2. DURABILITY AND SECURITY
The combination of a Corten steel exterior and a metal roof is far more resistant to the elements than traditional materials often found in stick-built houses. They also require less maintenance than wood houses, which can save money over the long-term.
3. FAST CONSTRUCTION AND MOBILITY
Although each project requires extensive advance-planning, once the foundation is ready the process moves quickly. Within two days the containers can be placed and the roof trusses can be built, with the fully sealed structure ready within two weeks.
When you build a structure out of shipping containers, you are using a fully recycled product, without consuming the energy required to scrap and melt down the material. This can help achieve the necessary credits for LEED-certified homes.
5. BEAUTY AND DISTINCTIVENESS
When you combine the industrial feel of corrugated steel with other materials such as glass and wood, the houses become dramatic, sophisticated, and beautiful.