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    Would You Live in a Container Home?

    By Designhaus Architecture
    Apr 4, '16 1:38 PM EST

    It’s hard to believe how far the developments in family homes have come. While many may think that having the bigger and better home designs is the best way to go, that simply can’t be said in today. The shipping container started out as a small side idea, but now has taken the housing community by storm. It’s a unique and unlikely way of living, but it’s proven to have a lot of benefits. 

    Designhaus Shipping Container Home

    These distinctive homes are exactly what you picture them to be from the beginning; dirty big hunks of steel sitting in the shipyards. Yet what they eventually become is an incredible home that can be affordable for almost anyone. These houses are 10 to 15 percent cheaper, their fire resistant, sturdier, and last longer than traditional homes. And what’s great about them is that they are moveable if need be.


    While there are benefits to living in these containers, many may still oppose such kinds of homes due to the industrial kind of feel with the dents and scratches attributed from being used overtime. But when you look beyond the small little details and focus on the big picture, there’s a lot more to take in.

    Designhaus Shipping Container Home


    The idea of having a shipping container as a home was a big step for the architecture world. Being able to take these random steel crates, normally used to ship items, and make them into a home for a family. Who would have thought of that? The creativity of how they can be turned into houses that are both inexpensive and attractive is what’s amazing. Even the popular network HGTV picked up on the trend and started the show Container Homes.

    Designhaus Shipping Container Home

    Designhaus teamed up with ModEco Development in creating such a kind of home located in Michigan, which will be featured on Container Homes. We were able to have fun and also learn more about these shipping containers as we worked on the project. The end results left not only the homeowners happy but also the team here at Designhaus, as we are ready to take part in the next new trend in home design.


    • I strongly believe this article should be more careful.  It has been well documented that shipping containers in their raw form are not as easy as people make them seem.  Beyond several well known articles, many experienced architects I have talked to have made it a point to me to dispel the myth of the shipping container.

      As an aesthetic, I think it's cool.  The exterior render of the two story shipping container home is nice.  But as a efficient building system, it is not so cut and dry.

      Apr 4, 16 6:06 pm  · 

      Step 1: Cut hole for window.

      Step 2:???

      Step 3: Traditional building methods.

      Apr 4, 16 8:40 pm  · 

      Hmm. The way it's been explained to me is that everything about metal as a building material is just a bit more difficult to manage than a typical gyp bd and wood interior assembly.  And for shipping containers, the corrugated metal walls are needed for its structural stability, the moment it starts getting cut open, the structural gains go down.  And how is the metal cut?  Who welds?  How do things hold together?  

      I guess a straight from a shipping yard into a home container with no frills and no windows wouldn't be so bad, but I think any interior build out starts to get more tricky.  Would it have to be even more raw and unfinished than that scene in Lord of War?  Mebbe?  

      Again, the aesthetic is nice. Arguing from the side of meaning or projected ideology works well.  For example, the Case Study homes in CA were often times made of wood, not steel, but the ideology was more important than using industrial metal in a new era.  But the shipping container as structural and efficient building method I think is a lil hard to buy.


      This article is a good point of reference too:

      Apr 4, 16 9:29 pm  · 

      I never understood why anyone would want to use a shipping has no functional benefit...aesthetically one could just use corrugated metal for siding...

      Apr 4, 16 10:19 pm  · 

      >but it’s proven to have a lot of benefits


      [citation needed]

      Apr 4, 16 11:21 pm  · 

      shipping container architecture is a total failure...essentially you have to build a traditional building (studs, insulation, power, lighting, finishes) inside of constrained metal building block that has horrible programmable proportions.  In addition, any hole or modification to the container requires a bunch of structural gymnastics to make that happen.  Unless you are doing shanty level design, don't bother....classic green washing at its best.

      Jun 23, 17 11:35 am  · 
      Wilma Buttfit

      But you can win design awards for them!

      Jun 23, 17 8:48 pm  · 

      They make nice corrugated metal if you want that look. Then again, if you're going for a 'look', you might want to reexamine your priorities. 

      Jun 23, 17 1:06 pm  · 

      Well, the Quonset hut has been around since World War II and is still used for thousands of purposes (including housing). Before the shipping container enthusiasts reinvent the wheel they may want to look at something that is (halfway) round to begin with. 

      Jul 13, 19 8:23 am  · 

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This blog would pertain to more of what architecture and design is and how it's slowly changing. There are also professional ways on what design is, and how to achieve and accomplish these things such as how one can make their building more attractive. I'll share my content about how architecture has taken a step into the abstract, as more architects try to steer away from the normal to step outside the box.

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