With housing prices at an all-time high and land availability at an all-time low, many young individuals and families are looking for affordable and innovative ways to build a home or extend their living space. Minimalism, too, plays a part here, with people of all ages choosing to downsize in order to improve their lifestyle. From tiny homes to container homes, we look at the latest trends in unique modern architecture - and help you to consider if one of these unique spaces could be right for you.

Shipping container homes Back to top

Chosen by many architects, homeowners and even humanitarian building companies for their strength, durability and modular benefits; shipping container homes have become quite the topic of discussion in modern architecture. While these structures might result in innovative home design, renovating them is no small task. 

Tiny homes Back to top

These small, clever living spaces have become extremely popular in recent years, however, the consent process involved in building them isn’t always easy. Affordability, freedom, sustainability and living lightly are among the reasons people are making the move toward tiny house living. If you’re curious, here’s what’s involved in building your own tiny abode.

What qualifies as a tiny house?

Obviously they are houses that are “tiny”, but tiny houses tend to have specific characteristics. They are typically 2.4 x 5 metres in size and are designed to maximise storage and living areas within a very small space. For many, living in a tiny house is more than a means to save money. It’s a lifestyle choice which encourages minimalism and the freedom to move around. 

Read: What are tiny homes?

Why should I choose a shipping container home? Back to top

In many cases, the pros and cons of a shipping container home will depend on whether or not you purchase an existing design from a company who specialises in container home conversions, or design your own personalised home. The former will be more affordable, but might not meet your lifestyle needs. The standout benefits of container homes include their 1) modularity (they can easily be extended to meet your living requirements) 2) durability (they are supposedly earthquake-proof!). 

Read: Why should I choose a shipping container home?

Why should I follow the micro home trend? Back to top

With the hype around tiny homes it is no wonder that most people are packing up their homes or starting their first home journey by following the micro home trend. Whether you are looking at downsizing or living a life in a converted van, we break down why micro homes are the current craze and why you should consider following them.

 

Read: Why are micro homes trending

How to convert a shipping container into a home Back to top

If you’re going to go ahead with a container home conversion, you’ll likely need the help and support of a few specialists; particularly a panel beater, engineer and builder. As it’s a specialised area, it’s also worth working with a company that can manage the conversion for you. Working with people who are inexperienced in this area of architecture could end up costing you a lot more time and money.

Read: Renovating shipping containers into a home

Building and renovating a tiny home Back to top

How to build a tiny house

While many people are attracted to the DIY aspect of building a tiny house, it’s important not to skip corners. Council consent should not be overlooked, a designer will most likely be required and qualified professionals will be needed for certain aspects such as electrical work and plumbing. 

Read: Building and renovating a tiny home

How much will it cost to build a shipping container home? Back to top

Next comes the big question, how much will it cost? While many people originally lean toward a shipping container home because they believe it will be a cost-effective living solution, they are often in for a shock. Shipping container home conversions require a lot of work and specialised skill which, when paired with council consent and the original cost of the container, can add up quite quickly. 

Read: How much do shipping container home extensions cost?

How much will it cost to build a tiny home? Back to top

How much do tiny homes cost?

When designed and built correctly, tiny homes can provide a very affordable means of accommodation. Prices vary depending on your country - but, because you will be paying for far fewer materials and less labour than you would to build a traditional home, costs will be significantly less.  

You can find out detailed information about the costs, building process and specifications of a tiny house in How much do tiny homes cost?

Which is for me: a shipping container home or a tiny home? Back to top

If you’re on the fence about shipping container homes, there is another hugely popular living option on the market - tiny houses. These small, creative homes aren’t without their challenges, but for some people, they provide a fantastic cost-effective and sustainable home solution. When comparing tiny homes to container homes, some key considerations are: living space, cost, sustainability and the process involved in building/renovating. Find out more below.

Read: Container homes VS tiny homes

If you’d like to be able to better accommodate friends and family members, an extension or conversion might be the right solution for you. See how homeowners across Australia and New Zealand have created additional space for their loved ones through these home additions and extensions.