Update of My Life in a Shipping Container Home - Tiny House Blog

Update of My Life in a Shipping Container Home

Well it has been 11 years since I first cut some holes in a shipping container in Costa Rica, trying to make a tiny portable house. Lots of mistakes, blood, sweat and tears.

Forty container modifications projects later, I live in the newest updated tiny home container I have made.

It’s a 40ft HQ with ceiling fans, fully ceramic bathroom and shower, large kitchen with a breakfast bar, living room and bedroom. I added a porch.

This steel box is hot, loud and small. But I love it.

My rent is almost zero and my electricity and water are $40 per mth.
So “Life is Good”.

It’s loud because I am located on the side of a road plus my giant steel sliding door moves in the wind. Something needs to be done about that.

It’s only hot at midday, then it cools down at night. Even though I live in the mountains of Costa Rica, the temperatures fluctuate significantly.
I decided not to insulate the container and just cover it with a roof. This helped along with the high RV reflective paint.

The problem is where the sun hits my container. This increases the internal wall heat significantly and makes it very uncomfortable inside, very quickly.
I have one of those heat guns that checks the temperature when you shoot a beam of light on a surface.

Since the day I moved into my container home I have enjoyed the downsizing significantly. It made me focus on what stuff I really needed. Plus, I really do not buy anything anymore. No bread makers, exercise equipment or anything that would take up space. No way! It’s no fun climbing over that big purchase that you accidently made, or even worse, that Christmas presents you received and have no space for it.

You should see my Christmas list now that I live in a tiny space.
Downsizing is a good feeling and keeps your footstep light on this planet.

I’m not sure how long I will live in the container; I travel a lot, so for now, it’s perfect.

Plus it’s for sale!
Which is great, since I make container homes in Costa Rica.

The author, James Lee has lived in San Ramon Costa Rica for 18 years.
He is a Chiropractor and Container Home Builder. He has modified over 40 projects in the past 11 years. His workshop and model homes are Located in San Ramon de Alajuela, Costa Rica.
Costa Rica (506) 8-307-8666
USA (512) 650-0231

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Hector Lin - February 16, 2017 Reply

Wow!Amazing blog!

Allison Bost - February 16, 2017 Reply

Cool post. Me and my husband bought a tiny home last summer but he wants to purchase land and build a container home community on it. Cool idea and good to know people are actually living comfortably in these housing units.

Sorien - February 19, 2017 Reply

Home in shipping container is very unique concept must say and I have seen few hotels with luxury rooms in shipping container during my last visits to India as well.

Can you share the selling price of this home?

Harrow On The Hill - February 20, 2017 Reply

I’ve seen school buses turn into great mobile homes, but I never imagined a shipping container could end up being so cozy and fresh. If you don’t mind me asking, how much does it cost to complete such a transformation?

Prakash - August 4, 2017 Reply

Wow! It was really worth reading this blog. Love that Shri Ganesha’s poster in your room. This is really a great transformation. Keep it up!

janni fer - July 3, 2019 Reply

I love your container homes and was wondering if I could get some more pictures to look at it.

Kirk Gordon - June 6, 2022 Reply

Your kitchen looks really cools! My current home is also made out of a shipping container and it’s pretty nice—simple and cozy. It took just 6 months to complete. The container itself is recycled material.

Some containers are deemed unusable in shipping, but still possess decades of life left. Even though the interior of my house looks modern, everything is minimalist. Water and electricity consumption is minimum, I have constructed the soak pit in such a way that the waste water can be used by a bunch of trees that I have planted around the soak pit.

Anyone interested in building and living in a container home, my advice is this: You need to do your research. Make sure you have the right amount of information.

It’s doable, but you have to know what you’re getting yourself into. Building a container home can be one of the most fulfilling and rewarding experiences of your life. It’s cost efficient, structurally durable, easy to build, and eco-friendly.

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