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You Can Turn A $2000 Shipping Container Into An Epic Off-Grid Home

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What if you could spend a fraction of what it would cost to buy or build your own house and instead build a unique home that you could make completely off grid? It can be done and there’s a bunch of people who’ve done it already.

Shipping containers exist in a massive surplus and someone like you or I can grab one for around $2000. From there, you can get your creative juices flowing and build an awesome home, get away or cottage like structure on your existing property providing you have the space. If you’re able to put this baby on wheels, you won’t even need any form of permit to have it around.

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article here....

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Just had a look at the article and found something interesting in the comments section (Alan from Shefield )

There is a lot of councils we have been told that just require written permission to build a shipping container home as the container sits on top of the land and not set into the ground.

Is there any truth in the above ,could be a game changer if it`s true but the cynic in me says it can`t be hope i`m wrong though

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Just had a look at the article and found something interesting in the comments section (Alan from Shefield )

Is there any truth in the above ,could be a game changer if it`s true but the cynic in me says it can`t be hope i`m wrong though

'Temporary' structures (such as sheds) are permitted in most planning areas, but there can be restrictions on size, location etc. The rules for conservation areas and AOONBs are stricter.

What you also have to contend with are building regulations, and i don't think 'temporary' structures can normally be inhabited. Thats why you can't just throw up a caravan park, for example.

I would think that the existing rules for container-based buildings would be the same as for inhabited semi-permanent mobile homes..

Also, as the container is lined inside and clad outside, one wonders if the container adds all that much to the structure. Perhaps a purpose-built frame with better insulation would be better to live in. unless, of course, the structure is genuinely temporary and the fact it is a container facilitates easy transportation.

Edit: The $ is a clue I missed. These homes are built in the US, under different building regulations.

Edit 2 : and under different planning regulations.

Edited by happy_renting

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Where do you get the land from?

Does it really cost less to build a nice house out of a shipping container, compared to building the entire structure from wood, or cob, or other traditional local materials?

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Perhaps a more realistic prospect for using a container as (part of) a home in the UK is as an outbuilding, specifically an annexe ancillary to the main dwelling, meaning that it can't have a bathroom, toilet, or arguably any plumbing. I think planning permission is still required, but the requirements are more lenient.

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'Temporary' structures (such as sheds) are permitted in most planning areas, but there can be restrictions on size, location etc. The rules for conservation areas and AOONBs are stricter.

What you also have to contend with are building regulations, and i don't think 'temporary' structures can normally be inhabited. Thats why you can't just throw up a caravan park, for example.

I would think that the existing rules for container-based buildings would be the same as for inhabited semi-permanent mobile homes..

Also, as the container is lined inside and clad outside, one wonders if the container adds all that much to the structure. Perhaps a purpose-built frame with better insulation would be better to live in. unless, of course, the structure is genuinely temporary and the fact it is a container facilitates easy transportation.

Edit: The $ is a clue I missed. These homes are built in the US, under different building regulations.

The Quoted part was from some one in the UK (Shefield)

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Where do you get the land from?

Does it really cost less to build a nice house out of a shipping container, compared to building the entire structure from wood, or cob, or other traditional local materials?

The land generally isn't an issue - getting land where permission has been secured to erect a permanent dwelling is another matter however.

That's why a lot of the 'Tiny Houses' you see on the internet are built on trailers, to get around planning issues.

You can also try building within permitted development rules. The QB2 house looks interesting: http://www.cubeproject.org.uk/

... of course, if you want to live in it full time you are breaking said rules but its low profile might make it easier to get planning permission from your local mafia operation.

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This reminds me of Kevin McCloud's Man Made Home on Channel 4. I recall that was a 'temporary structure' which he declared to the nation did not require planning approval as it was technically on wheels.

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From an article on the Daily Mail website... "Despite the cabin weighing four tons, no planning permission was required as the structure is classed as a caravan and is sited at the end of a caravan park".

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This reminds me of Kevin McCloud's Man Made Home on Channel 4. I recall that was a 'temporary structure' which he declared to the nation did not require planning approval as it was technically on wheels.

Glad to see somebody else picked up on the wheels :-p I thought that was an awesomely amusing way to get away from planning disputes in a worzel-gummage type fashion. I can just imagine cruising down the hill at 3 mph with my mid didget in the air! Problem is three mates would come round and you'd put some music with repetitive beats on and it'd get repo'd cos you're all smelly travellers ...

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