Why Are People Choosing To Live In Shipping Containers?

Home ownership is one of the many things people dream of once they reach adulthood. Unfortunately, the costly real estate market doesn’t make homeownership affordable for most Americans. That’s why people have been looking into a new, unusual alternative to buying property.

People are deciding to ditch traditional homes for empty shipping containers instead. Shipping containers are cheaper, durable and are easier to customize than you might think. 

Here’s why shipping containers are quickly becoming a popular alternative for some homeowners.

It’s Cheaper To Buy A Shipping Container Than A Traditional Home

Living inside a shipping container might sound odd, but it makes a lot more sense when you realize just how affordable they are.

Business Insider calculated the average price of homes in each state. Hawaii ranked as the most expensive with an average of $636,451 and West Virginia ranked the lowest at $108,236. While home prices are unpredictable and will vary based on where you live, shipping containers will cost relatively the same wherever you are — and the prices range as low as $1400 to $4000.

The size, condition and age of the container all play a role in what the price will be. QuickenLoans estimates the average cost of a 20-foot by 8-foot shipping container is only $2800, which is quite a deal if you consider what that space would cost in New York City.

Like buying a house, you’ll have to pay more money if you want to live in a more spacious container home. But that doesn’t make it any less affordable. For example, you can buy five different containers at the price of $2800. That will only cost $14,000, which is still very low compared to the housing market. This means you’ll still be able to meet your lifestyle needs while living in a shipping container.

It’s feasible to create a modest, cozy home in a renovation for only $10,000. If you wanted to build a shipping container home that’s more comparable to a traditional one, expect to spend between $150,000 and $175,000 – which is still much cheaper than the average cost of most U.S. homes. You can also consider buying a one-trip container to help further reduce costs.

Once you commit to shipping container living, the next step is customizing it however you see fit.

You Can Customize Containers However You Want

Just like a regular home, there are endless ways you can remodel a shipping container. Many of the steps are similar to how you would design a traditional home — with a good foundation, proper insulation, standard utilities and more.

What sets the container apart is its strong and cost-efficient steel structure. This allows builders to save money on materials because the container is already standardized and durable. You’ll save time and complete the construction process about 30 percent faster than building a normal home. 

This type of project allows you to get creative. You’ll control how everything is built since the container is a literal blank slate. Decisions like where you want to cut frames for doors or windows and where electrical outlets can go are all up to you. There’s no need to sacrifice heating or plumbing either; it can all be accommodated inside the container with the right tools. 

A shipping container home serves as a great option for people seeking a less traditional lifestyle. It can be customized as much or as little as you choose, and cater to whatever aesthetic is right for you. 

Building A Shipping Container Home Is Fast And Easy

Buying real estate is time consuming, and it can take months before a deal is reached. Plus, with the added cost of realtors, purchase fees and inspections, the road to home ownership costs a lot more than just a down payment. 

Buying a shipping container is a unique form of ownership that’s faster and potentially a lot cheaper than a house. Containers are even available to purchase online, which can speed up the process with the click of a button. It’ll also allow you to explore the sizes and varieties that are available for you to consider. 

There’s a lot of inspiration you can find online for shipping container homes. From humble homes with the bare necessities to elaborate multi-level abodes, you’ll quickly see that this concept puts you completely in control. Plus, the money you’ll be saving that you wouldn’t be able to do with a normal home means gives you more freedom to invest money into your customization. 

Regulations surrounding shipping container homes will vary depending on where you are. There’s a lot to consider before hopping on this do-it-yourself trend, but you can find plenty of guidance and ideas by taking the time to research it.

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