Shipping Container Tiny Home

/Shipping Container Tiny Home
Shipping Container Tiny Home2018-11-07T11:53:34+00:00

Shipping Container as Tiny Home

shipping container tiny house

Shipping containers sit abandoned at port.

Tens of thousands of shipping containers sit abandoned in ports. It is estimated that there were more than 530 million containers in the world in 2010. Only 17 million are in use.  Seems to be an astounding waste of resources.

Shipping Containers are very strong. They can be loaded with tons of products and stacked on ships six high.

Shipping Containers have become very popular and trendy for use as home, storage, prefab, and business construction purposes.

Converting a Shipping Container to a Tiny Home

shipping container tiny homeShipping Containers are structurally very strong but they need a lot of work to make them livable. Here’s why:

  • Once walls are insulated and paneled they will be narrower than a THOW.
  • You are starting with a completed shell but working with metal requires specialized tools and some serious manpower. You will need to employ a structural engineer to make sure your modifications are safe.
  • They are tough and can be shipped without damage. However, you will need to build a proper foundation and hire a crane to get the shipping container into place.
  • You will need to construct shade over the top to keep the sun from turning the interior into an oven. I have seen shade provided by solar panels, roof top decking, and even dirt and grass.
  • You might feel good about re-purposing an otherwise wasted resource but it costs more to build using a shipping container than traditional home building methods.

The most common shipping containers sizes:

  • 20′ GP
    • Exterior Dimensions: Length – 19′ 10 1/2″  Height – 8’6″  Width – 8′
    • Interior Dimensions: Length – 19′ 3″  Height – 7′ 9 7/8″  Width – 7′ 8″
    • Door Opening Dimensions: Height – 7′ 5″  Width – 7′ 8″
  • 40′ GP
    • Single set of cargo doors on one end.
    • Exterior Dimensions: Length – 40′  Height – 9’6″  Width – 8′
    • Interior Dimensions: Length – 39′ 5 3/4″  Height – 8′ 10″  Width – 7′ 8″
    • Door Opening Dimensions: Height – 8′ 5 1/2″  Width – 7′ 8″
  • 20′ HC (meaning High Cube. The difference is 1 foot taller than a standard 20′ GP)
  • 40′ HC (meaning High Cube. The difference is 1 foot taller than a standard 40′ GP)
  • 45′ GP (Domestic use only)
  • 53′ GP (Domestic use only)

buy shipping containersHere is a good source to buy a shipping container.



Here’s a YouTube® video of my favorite shipping container tiny home build: