Lonely Planet Writer

Would you consider a converted shipping container as your new holiday home?

It’s a beach house, a lake house, and a cosy cabin in the woods. Custom Container Living is transforming shipping containers into easily transportable dwellings, and proving the tiny home trend isn’t going anywhere.

Homes are made to be transported, set in place, and stay put.
Homes are made to be transported, set in place, and stay put. Image by Custom Container Living

The idea for shipping container homes came from watching HGTV, co-founder of the Missouri-based company Lon Holden tells Lonely Planet. “My business partner, who was also a custom home builder, saw [an episode] and said ‘I like this idea. What I do for my customers on a large scale, we can do for people interested in Tiny Homes, on a small scale.’ What really appealed to him were the structural aspects of the container as a starting point.”

The idea for shipping container homes came from watching HGTV.
The idea for shipping container homes came from watching HGTV. Image by Custom Container Living

The homes, available in 20-foot or 40-foot models, are offered in several layouts, each with a variety of options for siding, flooring, kitchen, and bath. Considering their micro-home status, 40’ units fit an impressive list of amenities. A model starting at $47,600 (about 39,000 GBP) comes with a full kitchen (including a stainless steel refrigerator, microwave, and a combination washer/dryer,) a bathroom with a 5’ tub and shower, heating and air conditioning, and a bedroom that holds a king-sized bed.

The containers can be used as a beach house, a lake house, and a cosy cabin in the woods.
The containers can be used as a beach house, a lake house, and a cosy cabin in the woods. Image by Custom Container Living

While they’re not mobile homes, the repurposed shipping containers remain true to their origins as moveable. Buyers can choose their delivery location, whether it be a holiday spot or extra space on their property. But 40’ containers can weigh over 20,000 pounds, so, Holden explains, “our homes are made to be transported, set in place, and stay put. This does not mean that you could not easily move them to a new location should you have the need or should you sell it. This will just require a call to your local tow company.”

The kitchen has a stainless steel refrigerator, microwave, and a combination washer/dryer.
The kitchen has a stainless steel refrigerator, microwave, and a combination washer/dryer. Image by Customer Container Living

So far, Custom Container Living has built units for full-time living, weekend getaways, workshops, and commercial storefronts, and has had inquiries about building salons and dorm rooms.