Shipping containers make me happy. Human beings are playful by nature and it really shows in how they figure out different designs and ways to use shipping containers to live or to work in. They range from the tiniest little box to huge multi-storey buildings and the variety of layouts and styles is what make them so fun to watch.
If you're about to start your own house project you might be carried away by the fun of playing with different layouts and materials and colour options. That's great, but Before you start you need to take a few things into consideration not to get in trouble with your dream house down the road.
1. Local building codes: Make sure that your new home doesn't violate any national and local regulations. Learning about how shipping container homes differ from traditional homes when it comes to code is important. The codes are ensuring that each home follows the safety regulations. If your home doesn’t, you could be forced to make costly changes with very little notice. These codes deal with virtually every aspect of building; there are codes regarding the size of each parcel of land, the fire safety of a home, road access, utility access and many more. Educate yourself about each regulation to avoid any inconvenience in the future. If your house is tiny enough it doesnt legally count as a house and therefor the zoning regulations wont apply to them. Check where the size limit is and make sure you stay legal.
2. Climate: Make sure you get the right insulation, air conditioner and heating devices suitable for your climate zone so you can be comfortable in the house. Up north where the winter gets cold you should choose 100mm insulation thickness and maybe electrical heating devices or wood heating. Floor heating can also be installed. If you get a lot of snow you might want to put a roof on where the snow slides off. If you live in a hotter, dryer area your container house will become a sauna on hot days unless you install an airconditioner and maybe awnings for the windows. Other climate conditions to consider are frequent floodings, earthquakes, hurricanes and rain.
3. The size: You dont want to end up feeling your house is too small. Make sure you have enough space. Talk to your family members about how much space they need to get enough privacy, and consider the fact that what is enough room today might be too small later on.
4. The terrain: Where are you going to install your house and does your house really fit there? Dont neglect to carefully study the terrain and make careful measurements. Placing the windows right so you get that evening sun on the veranda or the front door so it isnt blocked by that oak tree?
We wish you the best luck with your house project!