Why Are Shipping Container Homes So Popular?


What Are Shipping Container Homes And Why Are They So Popular Blog Cover

You’ve probably seen the explosion of shipping container homes in the news.  While some people may claim they are just a fad, their sustained popularity proves that they have a design style that transcends trends.

Some people just get the concept right away and want one, while others are left wondering what exactly they are and what is causing all the fuss. Still others have not yet heard of shipping container homes.

Today we go back to basics and explain exactly what they are and why people are falling in love with this new form of housing.

What Are Shipping Container Homes?

Simply put, shipping container homes are any building, home, or office, which has been constructed using shipping containers.

These containers can be either be brand new or used, and can be positioned and designed in such a way to create pretty much any style of home or office that you could think about!

One of the first, and best known, container homes was built by Todd and Di Miller back in 2011 in Brisbane. For more information about this home, read the in-depth case study we did on their home.

If you’re still unsure about what shipping container homes look like or how versatile they can be, make sure you check out these 17 incredible container homes.

Just How Popular Are Shipping Container Homes?

As you can imagine, shipping container homes are gaining in popularity every day as more and more people are finding out about them.

To find out just how popular they are becoming, Woot ran a survey and asked its readers: “Would you ever live in a house made of shipping containers?”.

People had three possible answer choices:

  1. Heck yeah. Those are cool.
  2. No way. Those are weird.
  3. I have never heard of such a thing.

We’ve made a chart summarizing the results below, and as you can see, shipping containers are really gaining in popularity.

Would you ever live in a shipping container house poll

The majority of people (61.5%) said that they wanted to live in a container home. Around 25% of people said that they did not want to live in a container home; I think that once they’ve seen these houses, they will change their minds pretty fast!

Last but not least, around 13% of people responded by stating they hadn’t heard of shipping containers. It would be interesting to run the survey again now, because I think this figure would be closer to 0%.

Why Do People Want To Construct With Shipping Containers?

There are many reasons why container homes are so popular and the reasons are different for each person. We will take a look at the top five reasons.


Without a doubt, one of the biggest reasons why container homes are becoming so popular is because they represent extremely good value for money. Shipping container homes are much more affordable than traditional brick and mortar buildings.

We have discussed the cost savings benefits of container homes here and here. In each of the articles, we give examples of real-world container homes and discuss how much they cost to build.

While this doesn’t mean that all container homes are inexpensive, the examples do show you just how affordable container homes can be.

For examples of more expensive container homes, you should visit this case study, where the container home recently sold for more than $1,000,000.


Some people are environmentally conscious, as climate change and its effects are becoming more readily seen, and prefer to construct Eco-friendly buildings.

Container homes provide the perfect Eco-friendly option because they are made from recycled shipping containers. Constructing out of used containers not only helps the environment through recycling, it also means that additional materials (such as bricks and concrete) aren’t used.

In fact, every time a shipping container is recycled we are re-purposing more than 7,000 pounds of steel.

How Many Shipping Containers Are There

Yearly Amount Of Containers Left In The US

The supply of used containers is unlikely to run out, as each year more than 500,000 shipping containers are abandoned. Add this to the several million already discarded containers lying across the world and you have a large supply to use for construction.

Speed of Construction

Cost and environmental factors are two reasons why people build using shipping containers, but they aren’t the only reasons.

Another reason why people construct homes and offices using shipping containers is that they can be built extremely fast.

When you construct buildings using shipping containers, much of the structure is already complete, such as the walls and the roof. This means your home or office could be built in as little as one month.

Look at the Riverside Building Offices, which is part of a large shipping container construction site known as Container City.

The office block was built using 73 shipping containers. Guess how long it took to construct. Eight days! Yes, that’s right, it only took eight days to deliver and site the containers. Can you imagine how long a traditional office block made from concrete would have taken to make?

Amazing Aesthetics

If you’re a fan of our website, then you will certainly agree that shipping container homes look incredible. It is not uncommon for people to discover that their new shipping container home is the envy of friends and family.

Shipping container homes are appealing to many because they have a very modern appearance. Containers have been used to create stunning mountain retreats all the way to tiny beach huts.  For example, check out the bold, modern style found in the Pumpkin House.

Still not convinced? Why not take a look at our article on the most beautiful 17 shipping container homes built.

Off Grid Capabilities

Off-grid living, in the purest sense, means to live in a home which is self-reliant and self-sufficient.

Previously, we interviewed Brenda Kelly, who had built a tiny off-grid home using only a 20-foot shipping container.

On top of the shipping container, she installed solar panels which give her more than enough power to heat her water and have electricity. In total, her tiny container palace was built for less than $30,000.

Off-grid container homes will likely continue to rise in popularity as more people are looking to move out of the city and become self-sufficient in the countryside.

If you’re looking for even more reasons why people are building container homes, take a look at 6 Awesome Reasons Why You Should Have a Shipping Container Home.


The popularity of shipping container homes has been growing for the last several years, but now they have truly reached the mainstream.

They are becoming more and more popular due to their Eco-friendliness, affordability and incredible aesthetics!

Let us know what you think about shipping container homes in the comments section below

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