Shipping containers are fantastic building material, and if used properly, they can offer a lot of benefits and advantages over traditional construction methods and materials. In this article, we are going to talk about the main benefits of using storage boxes as building materials to build your dream home. We will also discuss how to maximize each of the listed benefits.
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Toughness and durability
Toughness and durability are one of the most overlooked advantages of storage boxes. You need to remember that these things are designed to carry heavy and important cargo through dangerous and extreme weather. While they are on the sea, these storage boxes can be subjected to at least 100 miles per hour winds and more or less 50-foot waves.
These containers are rocked continuously by waves and wind, even massive storms, and they still remain intact, maybe some scratches and dents here and there, but intact. The toughness and durability are considered over-spec when they are made into offices and homes.
It means that the storage boxes are more than durable and tough enough to be used as office space or shelters, especially when you compare them with other eco-friendly materials like straw bales or recycled plastics. But to maintain its toughness, experts recommend that you do not cut out too much metal or steel from the storage boxes.
Removing parts of the walls to make way for windows, doors and room openings can affect the structural integrity of the container itself, and it will require an additional metal beams to carry the heavy load that was helped by the removed steel wall. Also, people need to make sure to regularly check the unit or perform a maintenance check on these containers to ensure that it is rust-free
One of the most significant advantages of using shipping containers as a building material is that you can use to convert these things off-site. If you want to live in a remote place, building your home on-site comes with a lot of challenges: building contractors are very difficult to find or too expensive to travel, shipping the materials as well as the supplies is also costly, and the availability of water and electricity necessary for building the house can be limited.
Instead, people can convert their storage boxes in a public place, and once the modification and fabrication are finished, they can transport the finished product to their desired destination. They can also pay a contractor to build it for them on their property, and ship the finished container office or home with an additional charge. It is one of the advantages of using storage boxes as building materials. Brick or cement houses sometimes can’t be built in some areas, and you can’t transport a finished cement or brick structure.
If you intend to live in remote places like the wilderness, the cost of delivering building materials to the site and paying the builders to travel can end up people spending more compared to buying a shipping container, build the house on the contractor’s headquarters and ship it to the location in one trip.
Another advantage of using storage boxes as a building material is its environmental benefits. When people are asked about why they prefer storage container living, the second most common answer was because it promotes ecological-friendliness.
Over the past years, a lot of people have become more aware of how humans affect the environment. People are finding ways to reduce their carbon footprint and become more eco-friendly. The best way to do this is to build a home from recyclable materials.
Every time a 40-foot container is being recycled, more or less 4,000 kilograms worth of metal or steel is reused and recycled. It is estimated that every year, around half a million shipping containers or storage boxes are being abandoned by shipping companies.
Not only that, there are at least a million storage boxes which have already abandoned. That is a lot of building materials out there. So, if a storage box office or home builds uses at least five or six standard containers, that is around 20,000 kilograms worth of metal that is being recycled. And by building a house or office using shipping containers, you are not using other materials that can harm the environment.
Without a doubt, one of the reasons why people use, storage boxes as building materials for their office or home is because this material is very affordable. Take a second hand 40-foot shipping cargo box as an example. It cost around $2,000 and provide at least 200 to 350 square feet of floor space. You only need to use three to four storage boxes together, and you will have at least 1,000 square feet of space for less than $7,000.
But not all homes made from storage boxes are affordable. Some of them even cost at least $1,000,000, depending on the materials used in the interior. That is why this material is very versatile. Either you can use it to build a very affordable house or office space, or you can make an extravagant mansion out of it.
Let us start with a little warning here: the truth to this statement will depend on the design of the structure. With that being said, homes made from shipping containers can be built, so they are easy to transport. To make it portable, you need to do these things:
Do not weld, use bolt when doing the foundation of the boxes, as well as when you put together the containers. You have to minimize the cutting of the containers. If you cut a lot of metal out of storage boxes, then you will reduce the integrity of the structure. It prevents them from being transported and stacked without adding additional reinforcement.
This kind of portability can be a significant advantage if you want to own a home or office but is always on the go. All you need to do is look for suitable hookups for your shipping boxes, each time you want to go to another place.