40ft Shipping Containers Transformed Into Amazing Off-Grid Family Home

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Here’s an inspiring video from Living Big In A Tiny House about a “dream home” that was made from two 40ft shipping containers.

The couple that created this amazing home, which has full solar power, were “living society’s dream” – with a 5 bedroom house – but it was essentially eating their entire lives and requiring them to work constantly in order to keep up with the bills. Sounds familiar?

The demands of having a family, work and maintaining a home can leave people wondering why they are even doing it.

18 solar panels on the roof (6KW) creates a full off-grid setup and the panels, elevated a few inches above the roof, provide a form of shade structure to keep the roof cool.

And how impressive does this home look? Two containers side by side, with a large cutaway in between, creates a very spacious interior. You wouldn’t even know you are in a cold, utilitarian steel box because of the wooden panelling and custom fit kitchen.


When it comes to joining containers together, it requires simply cutting out the required space and then bridging the gap with structural steel. I am not sure if that is welded or bolted as that was not mentioned. The entire structure is sealed at the seams and non-porous insulation is used as steel doesn’t “breathe” – meaning that condensation in the wall cavities could otherwise be an issue.

One of the benefits of full size shipping containers is the high ceilings, which adds a sense of space. The addition of a custom “triangular” section at the top of the wall creates a pitched roof and gives room for a sleeping loft, adding to the overall square footage of the home.

Composing toilets and wood burning stove add to the off grid capabilities and it was interesting to learn that a fair number of materials were sourced from salvage / reclamation.

The overall cost was around $150,000 (I think that is New Zealand Dollars) and it was 9 months of hard work to put together. And the most important thing is that being mortgage-free, you can now get on with the business of actually living!

40ft Shipping Containers Transformed Into Amazing Off-Grid Family Home
40ft Shipping Containers Transformed Into Amazing Off-Grid Family Home – Graphic © off-grid.info. Images: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NI71-qySsrE

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