Container Garage Modification by EMS

7 Step Guide to a Successful Shipping Container Garage Conversion

Looking to do add a garage onto your home but don’t want to drop a lot of cash? What if we told you there’s an affordable solution that can cost much less.  Shipping containers are a trendy, Eco-conscious way to add more room on to your home without breaking your budget. There are tons of things you can build with shipping containers, but we’re going to focus on one area of your home — the garage.

Building your dream garage doesn’t have to be difficult — or expensive. It’s easy when you follow our seven steps to creating an incredible shipping container garage.

1. Choose Your Container Size

Some of the largest cargo ships are built to hold up to 20 million containers. It’s safe to say your container choices are far more diverse than you think. The space you have available is going to affect the size of the container you’re going to get. You’ll have to consider the size and number of vehicles you want to store, too. Regarding size, standard containers are often 20 or 40 ft. Beyond that, you can find containers as big as 45 ft and as small as 10 ft.

Got a big SUV or roof racks on top of your car ? Look for a taller shipping container.

2. Choose Your Container Type

Container size is determined by the size of your lot and the number of vehicles you need to store. The type of container you get is more determined by your budget. Containers that are a little dinged and dented with a little rust will obviously be cheaper. If you’re not looking for a project or want a container that’s ready to go, try a one trip container. A one trip container was never part of a cargo operation. They’re in much better condition because they only made one trip — from China to the US.

3. Shipping Container Garage Style

Another thing to consider when building a storage container garage: what style are you going to build? Here’s where you can be as creative as your budget and space allow you to be!

Here’s a few ideas to get you started:

  • Got a compact car? One container might be enough for a neat and tidy one car garage.
  • Place two containers on each side and put a roof between them. You’ll have plenty of space to store multiple cars plus storage on the side.
  • Stack multiple containers like building blocks around your car storage space. You can create various workshops and storage from all of the containers.

Once you get started, you’ll realize how fun it is to build with shipping containers. Play around with your design until you get it exactly as you want it.

4. Prepare Your Land

Now that you know how you want your garage to look, it’s time to get down to the nitty-gritty. You can’t just drop a few containers and call it a day; there’s a process you have to follow.

First, reach out to your local government to see if you need any permits to build a container garage. You don’t want your project derailed by paperwork.

Once you’ve got the all clear, you have to prep your land. Here’s how:

  • Measure and mark the area you want to use for your garage
  • Clear the area of any plants and debris
  • Lay a basic foundation, like a concrete slab or steel pipe footing foundation

Now you’re ready to bring in the containers and build your garage.

5. Container Garage Basics

Your foundation is laid, and you’re ready to place your containers. There are some basics to consider at this point of your build. First off, if you plan on parking your car in the container, it’s best to position it with the opening facing the driveway. If you’re using the containers for storage, consider pointing the openings towards your house so you can keep an eye on them. Second, if you chose a used container, you might have to do some upkeep. Painting, rust removal and prevention, taking care of dents and scrapes, etc. are all things to consider before you move in.

Containers are easy to build with and durable, so they won’t need much to get started. Just a little bit of work makes it all worth it.

6. Upgrade Your Shipping Container

Most home garages have basics build in that we don’t think about. With a shipping container, you have a bare canvas that you can make into whatever space you like.

Here are a few options to consider:

  • Add insulation to your garage if you’re using your containers not just for your car but for storage too
  • Add electrical drops if you want to use the container as a work space
  • Consider air flow and add a few windows if you’re going to be doing projects inside the containers

These are basic upgrades that make a big difference. Think about how you’re using your space and what you need to be comfortable.

7. Beyond the Basics

You’ve got your container garage set up the way you want it. If you want to tinker even more, here are more ideas for ways to improve your dream garage:

  • Add security, like cameras or motion detectors, especially if you keep expensive equipment in your garage
  • A de-humidifier keeps dampness at bay and extends the life of your car and items in storage
  • Install shelving and a work bench to make it your ultimate work-space
  • Add windows to open up the space
  • Lay down flooring or a ramp to make getting in and out easier
  • Need more ventilation? Put in a fan
  • If you change oil, paint, or need a place for runoff to flow, put a drain in the floor

With the money you save by using a shipping container to build your garage, you’ll be able to afford a lot of great upgrades!

Build More with Shipping Containers

Creating the shipping container garage of your dreams is easier and more affordable than ever before. Once you build your garage, you’ll start wondering what else you can do with shipping containers!

We’ve got tons of different containers to choose from and can help with modifications, too. Check out all of your options and build your dream garage today!

The Pros and Cons of Building a Shipping Container House

The average cost for newly constructed homes is $385,200. Many people are turning to alternative building materials such as shipping containers to ease the cost of new construction. 

They are so popular that even hotels like the Flophouze Hotel in Round Top, Texas are constructed entirely from shipping containers. These prefabricated boxes may be the perfect solution to creating your dream home. 

If you are considering building a shipping container house here in Houston, there are a few pros and cons you should consider first. Keep reading so you can make an informed decision. 

Pro: Speedy Construction 

Building with shipping containers is much faster than traditional construction methods. Smaller homes can reach complete fabrication within three weeks in offsite fabrication. Larger homes can be completed in a few months.  

Many of the small details and modifications can be done at the production site before the containers ever reach their final destination. 

Shipping containers are also much friendlier to the DIYer. However, it is smart to consult with a design firm or an engineer before embarking on your container home. 

Pro: Cost Effective 

Building with shipping containers can save you money when compared to traditional shipping methods. One man used two containers to create a rustic cabin that is completely off the grid for $35,000. 

Depending on the quality of the container and its location, a container can cost anywhere from $1,400 to $4,500 and sometimes more. You may be able to find one for cheaper, but you’ll want to make sure you can actually build with it. 

Con: Not Quite Eco-Friendly 

The general theory is that if you use old refurbished shipping containers, you are doing the environment a favor. However, these containers typically have wear and damage making them unsafe for new home construction. 

If you do decide to use refurbished construction you need to ensure the structural integrity of your home. 

New shipping containers offer you the freedom and structural integrity to create any building you can dream up. 

Harmful Chemicals 

Used shipping containers may have held toxic chemicals or other materials. They have also been treated to prevent corrosion during transit. 

Remember, containers are made of steel and spend most of their time near and on the ocean. Saltwater and metal is a recipe for corrosion and rust. 

Make sure you inspect your refurbished container to confirm that it has been adequately treated to be safe for use in home construction. You will also want to check for rust as this will compromise the structural integrity. 

The Eco-Friendly Part 

If you decide to use a refurbished container the most significant impact you will have is with the use of steel. The average 40-foot container has more than 8,000 pounds of steel. 

You are also reducing your use of other traditional building materials such as wood and masonry. 

Pro: Mobility 

Whatever your reason, maybe you don’t want the home to stay at its original location permanently. With traditional construction, you don’t have the option of moving your building. 

Containers can have your completed building moved to a new location as many times as necessary. 

Pro: Creative Freedom 

Shipping containers come in a variety of different sizes which gives you the freedom to create a home as large or as small as you wish. You can combine multiple containers to create a larger space. 

You can create large windows to open the space up and bring in a lot of natural light. Or you can install large glass doors that you can open up and bring the outdoors in. 

Using shipping containers lets you express your personal style. With the rules of traditional construction and architecture out the window, you are free to create. 

For the most freedom, try to stick with high cube containers, they are 9’6″ tall. This will make it easier to add insulation and still have room for a ceiling fan. 

If you aren’t worried about this, you could use a standard height container; they are 8’6″ tall. 

Cons: Permits and Codes 

Container homes are still relatively new in many municipalities. Because of this, many permits and building codes are not designed to work with them. 

Do your research to ensure you are legally able to build a container home. Then you need to make sure your home complies with all current zoning and construction regulations. 

Here in Houston, the best place to start is with the Building Code Enforcement office. If you do not comply with planning regulations, you may find yourself having to take the home down even if construction is complete. 

Pro: Toughness and Durability

Containers get manufactured with durability in mind. Their original purpose is to survive many months and thousands of miles out on an ocean tanker exposed to the elements. 

They often far surpass the minimum specs for new homes when it comes to strength and durability. 

To retain this strength, you need to be careful about how much steel you cut away. If you plan to make significant cutaways for doors, windows, and room openings, then you need to install reinforcements. Additional steel beams can carry the load. 

Construct Your Shipping Container House

If you are ready to start building your shipping container house here in Houston, Texas, we can help you get started. We have a large inventory of both new and used containers. 

We can help you create the container building of your dreams. This could be a home, office, or any other structure you need to have built quickly.  

Contact us today and let us help you create the shipping containers you need to build your dream shipping container home. 

Freight Shipping Container Modifications in Houston: Container Homes and More!

The port of Houston hit a new record for processed container volume last year. The port handled 2.7 million 20-foot equivalent units. That’s up 10% from the previous year. 

With this much volume, there are plenty of containers in the area that are available for purchase. Their affordability and durability make them an attractive option for multiple construction projects. 

If you are considering using freight shipping containers for a home building project on your property, you need to read this guide first. It may save you countless hours of frustration, time and money. 

Let’s get started talking about some local regulations affecting your container use. 

Where to Build Your Shipping Container Home 

Texas is known for being one of the friendliest states when it comes to building with shipping containers. They tend to have more relaxed regulations when it comes to construction and zoning in general. 

For even greater building freedom, stick to the suburban and rural areas. The closer you get to larger cities like Houston the more regulations will be in place. 

Keep in mind it isn’t just the city and state government regulations you have to contend with. Many neighborhoods have an HOA agreement that regulates what can and cannot be built in a particular neighborhood or community. 

Using Your Container for Storage 

Don’t assume that you can use a shipping container for storage or as a shed on your property. Just outside of Houston the DeerPark City Council members decided they didn’t want shipping containers used for permanent storage within city limits. 

If a business wants to use a container, they must obtain a Special Use Permit. Even after approval, there are many other rules you need to follow. For instance, you cannot stack one container on top of another. 

You must also build an 8-foot opaque privacy fence to block the public view. 

Hotel Made of Containers 

Shipping containers aren’t just for storage, homes, and mobile offices in the Houston area. About an hour and a half outside of Houston in Round Top they are welcoming in a shipping container hotel. This shouldn’t be a surprise since the city is known as a mecca for antique and green living enthusiasts. They approved a six container hotel located just minutes from downtown. There are even plans to expand the hotel with more containers in the future. If you are looking to build, this would be an attractive area with container friendly zoning and codes. 

Can You Build a Container Home in Houston?

The short answer is yes, you can. There is no law prohibiting you from using shipping containers to build your home. However, there are some restrictions that we will get into in the next section. There is also the opposition you may face from those who do not want a container home in their neighborhood. 

Container homes are being successfully built in and around Houston. For example, this colorful home located in one of the many transition neighborhoods uses 4 containers

Your Container Home Can’t Be Too Tiny

We’ve all seen the tiny home trend where people live in a microscopic floor plan. One shipping container is perfect for this sort of living. However, you won’t be doing it in Houston. 

There are minimum dwelling regulations that your home must comply with. For instance, you must have at least one habitable room that is 120 square feet. Then the other habitable rooms must have no less than 70 square feet. 

No habitable room in your home can be less than 7 feet wide in any horizontal direction. The exception here is the kitchen. There is also a minimum ceiling height. You need to keep this in mind as it may make the difference between you buying a standard height container or a high cube. 

The minimum ceiling height in Houston is 7 feet. A standard cube is 8’6″, and a high cube is 9’6″. Now, this may seem like a lot of room, but you need to factor in your HVAC system, electrical wiring, and insulation. By the time you are done the finished ceiling on the inside of your container could be a foot lower than the height of the container. Then you still need to think about if you plan to install a ceiling fan. So, as you can see, there is a lot to think about when designing a tiny home out of a shipping container. 

Not to worry, we have ton’s of experience modifying shipping containers to your exact specifications. So contact us today for an insightful discussion on how to proceed. 

Use a Certified Fabricator 

Make sure you work with a certified fabricator for the other prefabricated building components you will need. If you plan to cut away a large portion of the container, you will need to construct alternative load bearing structures from steel. 

If you buy your trusses and beams from a certified fabricator, then individual inspections are not required. A city inspector will check for certification numbers on the structural components during your construction. However, if you have these numbers already, you can make the whole build out go a lot smoother. 

Start Using Freight Shipping Containers

Whether you plan to use freight shipping containers for storage, an office, or your home, you need to check with the local and state regulations to ensure that your new structure is legal. You don’t want to invest time and money only to find out that your new building needs to be taken down. 

Start by deciding how you want to use your container. Then check to see if that use is allowed. If you plan to build a container home, make sure you follow all of the codes because inspectors will be checking that you are throughout your building process. 

Contact us today and let us help you design a modified shipping container that is perfect for your needs. 

40 Foot Container: 8 Ways to Use a 40 FT Storage Container for Business

1.83 billion metric tons of goods were carried in shipping containers in 2017. But there’s more you can do with shipping containers than just cart goods around the globe. 

In fact, you can use a 40-foot container for business or personal purposes as well. In most cases, you just need to make a few conversions to make a 40-foot shipping container into exactly what you need.

If you’re wondering how you can use portable storage containers in your business, keep reading. We’re sharing with you five ways to use 40 ft shipping containers. 

1. Transform a 40-Foot Container Into an Office

40 feet is a lot of space. If your business is expanding, you may not want to invest time and money into finding and leasing new space. If you have the land, it’s easy to place a 40-foot shipping container on that land and you have the perfect space for a container office. All you need to do is minor modifications to ensure the container is ready for an employee to move in.

2. Turn It Into a Bistro or Restaurant

While food trucks are all the rage, it’s much harder and more expensive to set up a food truck business. Most cities have strict regulations regarding where and when a food truck can park. And it’s not uncommon for a food truck to break down. When that happens, there’s no business. 

But with a 40 ft shipping container, you have the perfect structure to build a bistro, coffee shop or restaurant. Best of all, you don’t have to worry about high rent increases, since you will own your building outright.

Check out our shipping container gallery for all the amazing structures that we can build for our customers. 

3. Indoor Gardens

Traditionally farmers grow their fruits and vegetables outside in the ground. Unfortunately, doing so leaves them vulnerable to animals, bugs, vandals, and bad weather.  But when you convert a 40-foot shipping container, you eliminate all of those issues. Best of all, by adding more than one shipping container together, you can build an indoor garden to the exact size and specifications you need.That means fresh produce year-round that you can deliver to your customers. 

4. Extra Storage

Extra space is at a premium these days. And getting extra space usually costs you a lot. But shipping containers give you the extra space you need at a fraction of the cost. You won’t have to rent storage space on a monthly basis, which saves a lot of time and money. And you can place your shipping container wherever you need it. That eliminates driving to a storage facility that may not be conveniently located near your office. 

Having extra storage is especially great if you have a seasonal or holiday-based business where there are times during the year when you need more space for your products. And, during the rest of the year, you can use the space however you need to. 

5. Bathrooms

Most women will tell you that there never seems to be enough bathrooms, especially when they’re at an event. No one wants to spend their time waiting in line for the bathroom which is why shipping containers are so great. Instead, you can build your own additional bathrooms. This is perfect because shipping containers are pretty easy to move around.

That means if you own a business where traveling to events is common, you’ll always have extra bathrooms to supply. This is also a business in itself since bathrooms made from shipping containers are much nicer to look at than the usual port-a-potties seen at most events.

6. Swimming Pools

While owning a pool is a dream for many, the reality of owning a pool isn’t always so cost-effective. But since you can make a pool or sauna from shipping containers, it’s now easier than ever. There’s no need to dig a giant hole in the yard, instead, a pool business can simply place a shipping container on the property. Shipping containers make the perfect swimming pool because it’s customizable.

You can easily convert a few shipping containers to make your customer’s pools as long and as deep as they want. 

7. Emergency Shelters

The number of natural disasters is on the rise. And according to NASA, global warming is making those disasters far more destructive than in the past. 

Emergency shelters are now becoming a necessity. And building them out of shipping containers is a great idea because they’re already built to withstand extreme weather conditions. 

Whether shelters are needed to house the homeless after a storm or to place in a backyard for increased peace-of-mind, there’s a definite market for more emergency shelters. 

8. Extra Lab Space

Sometimes businesses need a safe space where they can perform experiments. Shipping containers are safer to perform experiments in because they’re not made from flammable materials.

Also, if something does go awry, the problem is usually contained within the shipping container itself. This allows a safer space and you can modify it by adding as many shipping containers as you need. 

Features to Consider When Modifying Storage Containers

Portable storage containers are great because they provide you with a basic structure that you can use for practically anything. And they’re much cheaper than investing in new construction.

All you need to do is add a few features to personalize the space such as:

  • External and internal paint
  • Personnel door
  • Windows
  • Internal electrics, heating/cooling, and lighting 
  • Security and lock boxes
  • Shelving
  • Exhaust fans

Shipping containers can be placed side-by-side or even on top of one another. They’re an affordable way to create new buildings without using additional raw materials. 

Take some time to learn some basic information on how to shop for shipping containers. That way, you’ll eliminate errors and end up with exactly what you need.

Why Building With Shipping Containers Makes Good Business Sense

There are many reasons why 40-foot shipping containers make sense when you need something built. Here are a few of our favorite reasons:

  • Unique style
  • Faster to build
  • Eco-friendly
  • Portable
  • Affordable
  • Durable and tough

Also, it’s easier when it comes to building structures made from shipping containers. They can be built at the factory and then easily shipped to wherever you want it.

That eliminates problems and expenses usually associated with building in remote places. 

Contact Us

Whether you’re already in business and need the extra space a 40-foot container offers or you’re looking to get into a new business niche, we can help. We have shipping containers to suit every need.

And we’ll even do modifications. Ready to get started? Click here to contact us

Shipping Container Primer : Shipping Containers for Sale Near Houston

If you are looking for shipping containers in Houston, then you are in luck! The Port of Houston climbed into the top five list of ports in the United States. It handled 2.46 million containers in 2017. 

What this means for you is that there are plenty of container options for you to choose from. To help you get started, we are going to give you an overview of your options and what you should look for in your next container.  

New Containers 

New containers are going to be your most expensive option. The advantage of them is that they are in the best condition. 

To get started, think about what you plan to ship and the regulations of the country it is going to. Remember that freight carriers charge by weight and volume. You also need to think about your company’s growth. It can be smart to buy a container bigger than what you need right now. 

If you want to build with your container, then instead of cargo, you need to think about usable interior space as a room. 

Used Containers 

Operating revenue for Port Houston is $366 million. This is up 10% from the previous year. To continue this growth, a four-year project to deepen and widen the channel is in place. 

What does this have to do with you buying containers? Well, the more shipments that can come through the port, the more options you will have for used containers. As the port grows, so does the container industry. Buying a used container can save you a lot of money. The trick is to balance quality with cost. You will find used containers that are quite cheap, but these containers may not be in good or usable condition.

You need to make sure your container complies with either shipping regulations or building codes.  If you plan to ship your cargo via ocean freight, then Houston is a great place to look for your container. The port ranks number one in the country for waterborne tonnage at 173 million short tons

What Is Your Intended Use?

If you plan to use your container for shipping, you need to make sure you buy the right container for your cargo. The amount of general cargo that comes through Port Houston is around 3.5 million. This cargo typically comes in standard sized containers. 

Styles of Containers 

When it comes to shopping for your container, you have a couple of different options when it comes to style. 

Standard, Hard Top, and Open Top 

These are the containers that everyone thinks of when they think of ocean freight. They are metal boxes that are 20 feet wide and 40 feet long. At one end you will find a set of doors. 

Hard top containers have a roof that is designed to be removed. This way your cargo can get dropped in from the top. 

An open top container is accessible on the top with a tarpaulin roof. Unlike the hard top 

These containers work great for shipping dry goods. Anything in boxes, bags, or on pallets can go in these containers. 

Ventilated or Insulated? 

Some containers offer ventilation or insulation. They look exactly like regular containers, except they provide increased or reduced air circulation. 

Ventilated containers have openings at the top and bottom to encourage the flow of air. Insulated containers have a layer of Polyurethane foam on the walls. This will help regulate the temperature inside. 

Reefer 

If you need more than just insulation, then you will want to look at reefers. These containers have refrigeration thanks to a powerful compressor built into the container. These containers are a must if you need your cargo to stay frozen or is temperature sensitive.

Flat and Platform 

Think of these containers as a very large pallet. They are what you need for large or over-sized cargo. They are a flat platform with no walls or ceiling. 

Do You Need Modifications?

Do you need your container modified for a specific purpose? Ask if your container dealer can help you with this. Modifications are typically a discussion when you want to turn your shipping container into a building material. This means you need to add windows, doors, and electrical. 

Some companies have limited skill in this area. They will offer you a handful of pre-designed options. These companies may not have what you need though. 

Look for a company that can work with you. You need a team that can be as creative as you when it comes to the shipping container of your dreams. 

Do You Need Delivery?

Ask if the company you plan to buy your shipping container from will deliver it. Otherwise, you will have an added expense of moving your container. One catch to this is if they will ship it anywhere you want. Texas and Houston are huge geographic regions. Many container companies will either only move your container at the port terminal or in a minimal radius from it. 

Shop for Shipping Containers in Houston

When it comes to buying shipping containers in Houston, think about your budget and intended use. That way you can narrow down whether you need a new or used container. 

If you intend to use your container for shipping, you need to decide which style of container will work best for your cargo. If you are struggling to choose, we can help you sort through your needs and the available containers at our Houston Depot. 

Contact us today and we can help you find the perfect shipping container for your needs. 

7 Ideas for Converting Bulk Containers Into Awesome Buildings

Remember when you were a kid playing with Legos, creating all sorts of strange buildings that you may have hoped to live in one day? 

Great news for childhood you–since the trend of turning bulk containers into shipping container homes started a few years ago, your Lego inventions of your early years no longer need to be strictly left to the imagination. Neither is it only homes that these awesome building materials can be used for.

In this post we are going to cover several different possibilities for buildings made from shipping containers as well as some of the advantages that come with using these as building materials. 

1. Homes Built From Bulk Containers 

Let’s start with the buildings that really got the trend rolling–homes. Other than making your childhood self proud, what are some of the advantages that come from having a cargo container home? 

They’re tough as nails. Being stacked on top of one another and then bearing the weather of the open sea–sometimes for even a month, they have to built durably.

Being made from the world’s most recycled material, they’re incredibly eco-friendly (this is why we offer used cargo containers as well!).

They’re extremely affordable. With the average reported cost of building a new house in America right now nearing $300,000, a container home can easily save you more than half of that money, depending on modifications and specific needs.

They’re completely customizable, allowing you to, just like in your Lego-playing days, design and build the house of your dreams.

2. Offices 

Whether you have an established business or are an entrepreneur, you are no doubt always looking for ways to cut down on overhead. Likely, one of your biggest operating costs is the expense that comes with buying or leasing an office space.

Well, we already considered that using bulk containers as your building material can be incredibly cost-effective. But what are some of the other benefits associated with making these shipping containers a part of your business?

It inspires creativity. To be able to work in an office space that is itself built with creativity will inspire you and your employees’ own creativity.

People will remember you. Especially if your business is one that requires customers to visit your office, a bulk container office will help you to stand out as unique. Plus, working out of an eco-friendly office will attract more people. This will already give you a one-up on your competition. 

Container offices allow you to be incredibly flexible, no matter the type of business you run. Many businesses, such as pop-up stores and large construction teams, need to be able to move their shops and offices from site to site. This is why we offer such a variety of mobile container offices

3. Restaurants

Just like with a business needing an office, if you are planning to start running a restaurant, you need to stand out amidst the many options.  The same principles behind having a shipping container office come to play with having a restaurant built with shipping containers. 

For example, there is potential that shipping container’s will cut down on your start up and operating costs, helping your business turn a quicker profit. 

Also, you will quickly be able to catch people’s attention. If you can make people stop and take notice before they even take a single bite of your food, you’ve already taken a big leap towards restaurant branding success. 

4. Mobile Food Vendors

We’ve all seen shipping containers on the back of tractor-trailers being hauled to or from a shipping port, ready to make their next delivery. But what about at street food markets?

Being durable and portable, shipping containers are a perfect fit for mobile food stands and food trucks. Just ask street food powerhouse Copenhagen, Denmark. They’ve created an outdoor food market mecca, called Reffen. Their vendors’ building material of choice? You guessed it–shipping containers.

5. Pools 

What else can a sealed 8ft wide, 8.5 ft high (or deep), 20-40 ft long container be used for? 

Remove the top, fill it with water, and you have the hippest way to stay cool in the summer heat. With a bulk container pool, your house will instantly become the go-to hang out spot in the summertime.

What if you move? Well, unlike a poured concrete below ground pool, we are talking about a product that was built to be moved. It’s as easy as having the container pool picked up and brought to your new residence. 

With the summer of 2019 coming in hot (pun intended), why not check out this post for further details on if a shipping container pool might be the right fit for your family and friends?

6. Home Gyms

What else comes with the approach of summertime? The desire for that summer body.

We all want it, but paying $60-$150/month to have to travel to a local gym and get our sweat on in front of people may not be our thing. Or it could be that your house doesn’t have a basement, garage, space in general, or a place you could safely stack hundreds of pounds worth of gym equipment. 

This is where a hardy, open and spacious shipping container could be the perfect fit for your next home gym.  

And with just how affordable a used shipping container can be, it could easily be one of the cheaper parts of your home gym investment.

7. Home or Work Storage Sheds 

If you’re a tradesman or tradeswoman, homeowner, or simply someone who enjoys being handy, you may run into the same problem as someone who wants to build a home gym–a lack of space or safe place to store heavy, metal equipment. 

The benefits of considering a bulk container for use as a storage shed are immediately seen. Being spacious and open, you can store all sorts of tools and machinery, such as lawnmowers, plows, and other heavy-duty equipment in one.

Since they are durable and fireproof, you can store heavy, sharp, electrical, and gas-filled equipment with peace of mind, not worrying about fire or wear and tear.

Built of steel and capable of being locked tight, you can put your mind to ease knowing that potentially tens of thousands of dollars worth of equipment is safe in your cargo container storage shed. 

Durable, Portable, Affordable, Eco-Friendly, and Super Cool…But Right for Me?

Whether you’re an entrepreneur, store or restaurant owner, environmental advocate, or simply someone who wants a cooler, more hip way to live and work, make sure to seriously consider some of the shipping container ideas discussed above. 

Love the idea of building a shipping container home or office but need a little bit more information? Check out our blog for more inspiration in bringing your ideas to life!

If you have already decided that cargo containers might be the right fit for your needs, get in touch with us today? We can price out single or bulk quantities of new or used containers for you.

Shipping Container Depot Houston Texas

Thinking Outside the Box: Your Complete Guide to Buying Freight Containers

Why would you want to buy freight containers?

There is a multitude of reasons. The most obvious starts with wanting to ship cargo somewhere else. Other reasons are more creative. As an example, the University of Wales is developing a ‘box village’ that will be made entirely from freight containers.

That is part of the beauty of buying a container. Yes, it is a metal box, but you can do a lot with a metal box that is weatherproof. In fact, you could say that the use of a freight container is only limited by your imagination. You can find other ideas here.

No matter what you intend to do with your freight container you will need to make sure you read this complete guide BEFORE you buy.

Freight Containers – the Basics

Perhaps you have seen freight containers stacked near a port, pulled by a lorry, on a building site or even in someone’s backyard. So you already know what they look like. Did you know though, that not all freight containers are the same?

Dimensions

Freight containers are normally 10, 20, 30 or 40ft long. The standard height is 8 or 8.5 ft. A standard 40ft container can hold 40,000 pounds in weight.

There is standardization in the shape of ocean-going freight containers. This is rectangular. An alternative to the standard dimensions is the high cube. This is better suited to certain types of cargo.

It is also worth noting that the container can be open or closed, ventilated or insulated, and even refrigerated. The key determining factor is, of course, the cargo.

Material

No prizes for already knowing that freight containers are made from metal. Bonus point for knowing they are made from steel. However, the real prize is that they are made from a special type of steel designed to last longer outdoors.

This steel is called COR-TEN. When you see a freight container looking rusted you may think that the metal is just like any other metal that corrodes outdoors.

However, this is part of what makes this steel alloy so special. It forms a rust-like outer layer that then serves to protect the rest of the metal from corrosion. 

Lifespan 

In general, a standard freight container has a lifespan of 10 years. After which it is sold onto the used market.

A second-hand container has another 10 years or so of use. Of course, it depends partly on how it is used and whether it is maintained in any way.

There is such a thing as a single trip container which means they are only used once and then sold on. These containers could be used for 20 to 25 years.

How Much Do Freight Containers Cost?

New freight containers tend to have a more standardized price range and vary between $3000 and $5000 or sometimes more. It is possible to have containers built for you to special dimensions and specifications but obviously, that comes with  higher price tags.

Used containers can be as cheap as $1000 or cost upwards of a few thousand dollars. The key to remember with freight containers is that it is a buyers market. There is no shortage of containers. The limited life-span of using a container commercially means that there is always a steady supply to the second-hand market. However, like any used product, you need to do your due diligence before purchase. 

Where Can I Buy a Used Container?

The first thing to know when buying a container is that it is much better to buy locally. This will save you a small fortune in transportation costs. It is unlikely you will be able to buy internationally because the shipping cost will be too expensive. That said don’t discount the possibility of free transportation if you are buying locally. Always ask and always negotiate.

EMS is an excellent place to start your search. You can browse the website or get in touch with further questions. An alternative idea is to search for used containers on local online websites. 

Of course, one of the best ways is to call ahead and make an appointment at a shipping depot like EMS where you can see many containers on a single visit. 

Buying Second Hand – Top Tips

Although containers are extremely robust they are certainly not indestructible. You will need to physically inspect the containers. Follow these tips to make sure you get a good buy.

1. Outside

Check for dents and any scrapes in the exterior walls. It’s also important to check if the walls are intact or bent out of shape. You will expect trust but make sure it is not severe and with weak spots. 

2. Interior

Get inside and have a good look. Allow your eyes to adjust to the light or even better take a torch with you.

Check for weak spots. Look for holes and dents. Look for gouges any signs of leaks. Note if there are any unusual smells. There will always be odors so just make sure you are happy with how the container smells.

3. Roof

Make sure you inspect the roof. In particular, check the corners for damage as this is where the container is most likely knocked and hit when moving. 

Once again you are looking for holes and severe scrapes and general signs of wear and damage.

4. Doors

Make sure the doors open and close as they should. Avoid containers with ceased doors and with damaged seals. 

Freight Containers – Where Will Yours Go?

Buying freight containers is not as difficult as it may seem at first. Now that you are armed with this guide you can continue to gather more information when you are ready to make a smart purchase.

If you have questions please contact us here.