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The Container House that's Full of Great Tricks

Luke Riley Luke Riley
Modern houses by A4AC Architects Modern
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Container homes are making big waves here in the UK. It seems like the country has gone mad for this unique type of housing as everyone learns more about them. 

The reality is that there are millions of empty shipping containers around the world that will not be used for cargo again. The exact figure is unknown but there are potentially hundreds of thousands of these hefty steel boxes piling up in ports and junk yards here in the UK. Architects and builders are taking advantage of this surplus by recycling these containers and converting them into affordable and environmentally friendly homes for the masses. 

The following project provides a fascinating insight into the world of container home creation so start scrolling down to find out more…

An unexpected home

A mere 14sqm of space is not much to work, unless you’re an experienced team with plenty of projects under the belt. Renowned South Africa based firm Architecture For A Change designed and built this low cost house inside their Johannesburg factory.

This inexpensive home was created out of a retired shipping container through calculated modifications. Large sections of steel were cut away from the shell and replaced with doors, windows and other openings that can be easily opened, closed or covered completely. 

Here we see how the home looks when it's all closed up before being transported. 

Closed off to the world

Exterior Modern houses by homify Modern



Since the Architecture For A Change team insulated and finished the home off site, they were able to work quickly to customise what was just an empty box. After placing the structure on its new foundations, they applied this side of the exterior with a timber cladding for a more natural and homely feel.

As a cute touch the exterior walls of this container home were painted colourfully, seemingly matching the personality of the excited new owners. They plan on making the most of their home, which can be picked up and transported anywhere. It will be like travelling the world without ever leaving the house! 

Open sesame

Exterior open Modern houses by A4AC Architects Modern
A4AC Architects

Exterior open

A4AC Architects

The structure can be opened up to the world thanks to an easy to use lever system. The timber cladding—that we saw covering the side wall—lifts up to create a shaded area right beside the home's main living area. 

Full height glass doors were also hidden behind the timber, which allow for easy access between the interiors and the shaded outdoor setting. We can see how they can also let in plenty of sunlight without losing any of the warmth that's created inside.

Hidden features

Service latch Modern houses by homify Modern

Service latch


The original steel doors have been kept in place at the opposite end of the structure which, when opened up, reveal the functional side to the home. This end of the container contains the circuit boards, gas storage and electronic boxes, which all do their respective jobs to keep those living inside comfortable. 

The interiors are powered via the main power grid while certain facilities run on the energy provided by a solar panel installed on top of the roof. The pitched roof is ventilated and arranged in a way that makes cooling by air conditioners unnecessary as the air is used as a passive cooling system.

Compact kitchen

Our first look inside is from within the heart of this perfect little home. When the owners aren't out exploring the world, they spend their time right here. Soon the space will be filled with a sofa, art and personal objects that will make this little house feel like a real home. 

The kitchen isn't the most glamorous of spaces but it does contain all the necessary facilities needed to prepare meals and store plenty of food. Hidden out of sight, behind that vibrant red wall, is the bedroom and bathroom. 

Cute bathroom

To finish we take a peep inside the bathroom, which has been designed to make best use of its small dimensions. We certainly weren't expecting the bathroom of this container home to include a bathtub but we can see that a generous sized tub has been fit snugly into place. 

For those wondering about the price of this project, the total cost was less than 11 thousand pounds! An incredible amount that reveals the potential for this type of home construction. 

If you are keen to find out more about container homes, don't miss: Good Living Inside a Container Home.

Would you ever consider living inside a container home? Whether yes or no, we'd love to hear your reasons in the comments!
Whitton Drive by GK Architects Ltd Modern

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