Making a Shipping Container Home

Published On: December 15, 2015Categories: Residential

At A-Verdi we are always interested in neat new trends with storage containers and recently we saw something that really caught our eye. People have started using shipping containers to bContainer hHomes 1uild their dream homes. At this point, you’re probably wondering why someone would do something like this. Simple answer; steel shipping containers make an affordable, convenient and eco-friendly raw building material. Conventional construction of a house involves the purchasing and assembling of hundreds of different pieces and parts that all have to reach the job site at the right time to keep construction moving smoothly. With shipping containers, you just order the number of units you need, have them delivered by flatbed or trailer, and then construction begins.

Our storage containers are made from 14-gauge corrugated steel which is sure to hold up against the environment making it a durable option for creating a home. Production of the containers is done in a controlled setting and standardized so they can be produced at a low base cost. The containers are easy to move and are made to stack making arranging them the way you like a breeze. Homebuilding crews often find considerable savings in time and materials as the products arrive manufactured and structurally sound. The industry is still relatively new so finding experts to create your dream home may still cost you a pretty penny, but as the practice becomes more common the cost should drop.


In general, a storage container costs between $3,000 and $9,000 depending on the age and condition of the unit. If you are purchasing the unit for housing you may be able to get away with some cheaper units as with a little work and a fresh coat of paint (which you were probably going to do anyway) you can have them looking like brand new in no time. Fitting these containers with power, plumbing, windows, and floors will cost you an additional fee. This can be done either through the correct type of contractor like you would for a traditional home or through our onsite metal shop. We also make office containers that come pre-fitted with the electrical hookup and have windows already installed, which could give you a head start on your project. Other factors including permits, site prep, and delivery could also significantly impact the cost of your storage home.

Large storage container dream homes can range from $150,000 to $200,000 in price which is just around half the price per square foot of a traditional home. Smaller, more humble, container homes have been constructed and furnished for around $10,000 making them a highly affordable alternative to your average home. Some handy minimalists have created their very own container home for just under $4,000.

The Building Process

Container Homes 2

The building process of a shipping container home may be simple compared to your conventional home but this does not mean it’s as easy as plopping down a container in your yard and throwing in some furniture. There are still some basic steps to home building that must be taken when creating your storage home.

The first of these steps is to investigate the legal requirements of your property. The idea of container homes is relatively new so it is best to check in with your local building code enforcement office to see what kind of permits will be needed for the job. It is important that this be done prior to construction as waiting until the project is started could cause some major delays and fines.

Next, you have to create a floor plan. Your rooms may be pre-built but you still have to decide how you want your new abode to be laid out. This is also important in determining where to cut holes for doors and windows which will likely be done before the house is assembled.

Container Homes 3 and Feature ImageAfter you are done investigating the legal requirements and planning out the setup of your home you have to get the containers ordered and delivered. It’s best to design the floor plan ahead of time so you understand how many containers you need and whether your contractor can make all the necessary modifications or if you would rather have the container come with some of the prebuilt.

From there, you then begin the traditional construction process which includes things like setting the foundation, insulating and drywalling the storage space, and finally hooking up the power and plumbing. The whole process breezes by, taking 30% less time than a conventional build.

Here at A-Verdi we love this new trend. Someday we hope to see container homes all over alongside your conventional homes. If you’re thinking of building a container home in Upstate New York, let us know. We offer a wide selection of containers in all different sizes for your build. We are always looking to be part of great things and it would be an honor for us to be part of your new container home.