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Houses Made From Shipping Containers

Shipping Containers

Here's a home that's truly "outside the box" or inside, depending on where you stand. They're made out of recycled steel shipping containers. Yeah, and they're looking pretty good.

Those big shipping containers you see on the back of semi-trailers are in service up to ten years or more. Every few years they're inspected, and when they're too old for active duty, they're sold, parked, stacked, and left to the wind and rain. And with America importing so much stuff, there are a lot of decommissioned containers. Some estimates go as high as three million.

Enter, a bold idea. Why not turn those containers into affordable homes?

The idea has begun to make headway in places like Georgia, Florida, and California. Builders say the conversion process is quick and cheap. In a day, a good welder and a crane can have a container house ready for a finishing crew to install plumbing and electricity. That kind of productivity cuts building time in half and lowers costs by about a third.

And with fire-resistant steel container homes, just about everybody wins -- everybody, except of course, the termites!

Script by Dan Maxwell
Copyright 2007, Catalina Island Conservancy