Contact Us

Contact Us – Odpod Shipping Container House

To get in touch please use the comments section below or email us at odpodcontainerhouse@gmail.com

Regards,

The Odpod Crew
Craig Artemiou and James Harris

37 thoughts on “Contact Us

  1. Well done guys! I’ve been considering this method for years so it’s fantastic to see someone is actually doing it. Did you encounter any probs complying to building code as the materials and construction is so far removed from the norm?

    • Hi Drew
      The house can be considered as a steel frame construction, which makes the fact they are shipping containers irrelevant. As long as you have a good structural engineer and building surveyor to ensure the building is safe and compliant the only last problem you will have is the council. Each council is different and unique, by talking to the planning department you will get a better understanding of how they operate and what you need to do to satisfy them.
      I helped a friend recently in Ferntree Gully, VIC submit for planning and his council and they required the following:
      1: A landscape plan, with a list of each tree, location and botanical name.
      2: A photo of neighbors properties.
      3: Floor plans/elevation plans, existing and proposed.
      4: Shadow diagrams at different times of the day.
      5: Overlooking diagrams.
      6: Contours and levels.
      7: Site cover ratio and permeability ratio.
      8: Basic service plans.
      and more….

  2. This is awesome. I’m glad I stumbled onto your project. I want to build something similar in the Philippines — I like how it’s 2-stories. I heard these containers are waterproof too (for when used during shipping). Are the structures capable of handling extreme storms and earthquakes? I’ve spoken to a place there that can sell me shipping containers, but I want to know what equipment I would need for the build.

      • Hi,

        I am also interested in using shipping containers for living accommodations in Cavite, Philippines. May I get vendor, contact, and other information to get the project started?

        Thanks,

        Pauly

        • Hi Pauly,

          Unfortunately we don’t have any contacts in the Philipines. You may be able to purchase your containers second hand from a container retailer. They are sold after 10 years of service at sea, and are often sold for storage purposes.

          The Odpod Crew.

  3. Hi,

    We are looking at building a modest container home in the New England region of NSW, 3-20ft containers in a ‘U’ configuration on ground level.
    Can you recommend an engineer for certification of the house.

    Thanks
    Peter

    • Hi Peter

      Each State has different requirements, here in VIC the Building commission website has a list of all the registered structural engineers. You would be best to contact your state body to find out who is registered in your area.

      link:

      If you would like some feedback on your design please post the images on http://imgur.com/ and put the image links in a comment.

      Cheers
      Craig

    • Hi Laura. The House isn’t covered up yet, the image you are talking about is a computer rendering. We haven’t decided 100% on the final cladding, however it will mostlikely be cement sheet or an MGO (magnesium oxide) Board. MGO Board is super fire resistant, more info here:

  4. hi there,
    i’m interested in getting a container home made and just wanted to know if the are any issues with particular councils, when building a container home on a property.

    i’m also interested in integrating solar and wind renewables.

    any information would be great.

    thanks

    • Hi Adrian

      You would be best to talk to the council directly, since they are all different some will love it and some with hate the idea.
      In terms of renewables, it really depends on your requirements and budget. If you want to go completely off grid there are a large number of things to consider for example:
      -Collecting drinking water, food preparation, showering.
      -Using grey water for gardening.
      -Your sewerage disposal/treatment system.
      -Electricity generation, photovoltaic, wind power etc.
      -Hot water system, photovoltaic, solar thermal, heat jacket on a wood heater.
      -Heating and cooling, passive structure design, wood combustion, raidiant floor heating, thermal mass.
      -Power storage system, batteries etc.
      -Cooking type, wood combustion, bottle gas etc.

      Some good products on this website, http://www.wiseliving.com.au.

      There are loads of things to consider, and lots of detailed information on the Internet, have a look and let us know how you go.

      Cheers
      The Odpod Crew

  5. how do I get one of these built in SA? am very interested in making a similar one with 9 40′ boxes. Not sure of where to start and who to ask. is this a cheaper option then building a conventional house? also if people are using builders etc are they getting finance from banks etc? cant see the bank lending for such a development. any info would be much appreciated, cheers mick..

    • Hi Mick

      Thanks for your question, though simple it has lots of answers. I would suggest starting with the council, if they say no then it can be a deal breaker or you might end up in having to take them to court. The next step is to find a good building surveyor, who has experience with alternative constructions and a good structural engineer. It can be cheaper and it can be more expensive, depending on your finishes, layouts, cladding etc. If you use a builder with a fixed price contract you should be able to get a loan from any bank. If you go down this path you will need to find the right builder. Otherwise you can choose to be an owner builder, which will make getting a loan harder. Bank of Melbourne and NAB both do owner builder loans last time i checked, give them a try. Banks lend for steel frame construction all the time so it depends how you broach the project to the bank manager.

      Scenario 1: “I have never built a house before and i need money to buy 9 shipping containers and hire a massive crane to undertake the project. Please lend me money even though you would class my project as extremely high risk”

      Scenario 2: “I have a structural engineer, building surveyor, architect and council town planner backing my steel frame house project, all my project costings are fully documented in a spreadsheet and i have undertaken experience and education in the building and construction industry. What else is required to fulfill your lending criteria as an owner builder?”

      Please let us know how you go and if you have more questions feel free to ask.

      Cheers
      The Odpod Crew
      Craig

  6. Hi,

    This is great and your considered answers to everyone are also very helpful. I am considering building with containers myself in Victoria. Can you please tell me, what did you end up insulating the inside walls with and what final insulating rating will you end up with? I really like this idea, but fear for the cold winters and hot summers.
    thanks
    J

    • Hi James
      Thanks for your message. Insulation to protect from the hot and cold weather needs to be considered separately and implemented as a combined solution. The insulation rating is calculated by the type of insulation used, for example if you use Earthwool R-4.0 195mm thick, in your ceiling space you will achieve insulation of R4. For our construction Healesville is a climate zone 7 and we needed to achieve R5.1. We are planning to install insulation in the next couple months, I’ll make a post when that’s all finalised. *note when you look up R values the USA has a different R system with values of R20 etc.
      Hot weather protection options:
      • The steel container will heat up if there is direct sunlight on the surface; a roof with air flow is a really good idea. Some people use a green roof and the soil acts as some insulation.
      • Reflective paint, bright white or ceramic paints.
      • You would be surprised how a tree or shrub casting a shadow can keep the house cool, deciduous trees keep out the heat in summer and let the heat in winter as the leaves drop off.
      • Insulation in the walls roof and underfloor. (this will be a requirement for your construction)
      • Ventilation, airflow this can be called passive cooling.
      • Using eves to shade in the summer.

      Cold weather protection options.
      • Passive heating and thermal mass, for example a big stone wall next to a fireplace will release radiant heat when the fireplace is no longer heating.
      • Insulation in the floor walls and underfloor.
      • Orientation of the house to capture the light in the desired seasons.
      I went into a fair bit of detail in a previous reply on insulation and condensation, check this one out.
      http://www.odpod.com.au/insulation-a-shipping-container-house-qa/

      Cheers
      The Odpod Crew
      Craig

  7. do you have any plans of containers being used for earth covered housing as i’m keen to built in a high fire zone in northern nsw

    thanks bryan

    • Hey Bryan

      At the moment we don’t have any plans for underground containers, however it seems to be a popular topic. Just last weekend I met a bloke on the west side of Melbourne who is interested in building an underground container cellar, using a 20ft container.

      It would be a good idea to see a building surveyor about your idea, since there a limitations on what you must do to comply with the building code, for example airflow and natural light minimum requirements.

      Some useful links below:


      Cheers
      The Odpod Crew
      Craig

  8. Odpod crew,

    Great Website, very informative. Appreciate your efforts to share your knowledge gained during construction.

    We are soon to commence on a shipping container house in Christchurch, NZ.

    Final obstacle is getting building consent…

    What did you do to line container internally, is it just timber framing and Gib board ? What lining system was used in wet areas e.g bathroom ?

    • Hey David

      There is an internal timber frame so the rooms can be made anywhere (and not restricted to the container sizes) We haven’t finished the wet areas just yet but there are 2 main products used for wet areas, 1: Villaboard and 2:Wet Area Plasterboard. Lots of people will tell you one or the other is better, but in terms of the BCA/NCC (Building Code of Australia/National Construction Code) they are both compliant systems. Talk to you local supplier since they may be able to offer better rates for one or the other.

      Cheers
      The Odpod Crew
      Craig

  9. Hey Guys,

    Good job on the house, seems it’s coming along great.

    I just have a question regarding the flooring. I have read in many articles that the chemicals used to treat the plywood floors become a potential health risk. Like Formaldehyde is present in many plywood glues.

    From your container data plate I read Basileum where its active ingredient is Phoxim, an organophosphate compound. Seems to be commonly used against ants and termites.

    From the World Health Organization, Phoxim is considered moderately hazardous (Class II). It has a vapour pressure of 2.63 mm Hg at 20° C.

    What are you guys planning on doing with the flooring regarding the vapours, sealing it with epoxy? It should create a physical and vapour barrier from the chemicals. Since with all the framing done seems to be hard to remove all the flooring.

    Cheers,
    Dino

    • That’s a great question. Thanks for bringing it up for consideration……. In addition, I would like to ask if there are any other health risks/TOXINS one might need to be concerned with living in these containers that were not designed for human occupancy. In other words….. what health concerns might there be w/ any type of primers or paints that might have been used, or any other treating chemical on the container when new or along the way of it’s life.

      I’m thinking about a couple of these for a cabin and like the idea of having a ‘green-roof’ added as well…… I wouldn’t imagine weight on the roof (green roof/dirt/plants) could be that much of an issue w/ these considering they way they’re built.

      • Hey Buddy

        Yes unfortunately the container floors have been treated with chemicals. There are a few different treatments, which have a varying degree of chemicals. There are some options around this, 1: remove the floor completely, 2: cover with epoxy resin to prevent off-gassing. We will use epoxy resin to cover the timbers and then build a solid timber floor on top. I would also hope that because these are second hand containers, 15 years old now, the off-gassing will be greatly reduced compared to a new container.

        The green roof can work really well and is good for insulation. Just keep in mind the roof is not designed to take weight, only the corners are strong.

        Cheers
        The Odpod Crew
        Craig

  10. Hi,

    I was wondering how you comply with ceiling Heights in living areas?

    We have been looking at this kind of project, and I’m worried I won’t get my 2.4m in habitable areas. Thoughts?

    • Hi Ben

      It all depends on your intended finishes. We will achieve 2.4m heights thought the house, and we have added timber in the ceiling and installed a new floor onto p of the container floor. The best way to achieve maximum height is to use high cube containers, they start at 2.9m external and 2.7m internal.

      Cheers
      The Odpod Crew, Craig

  11. Hey there, loving your progress so far! I am looking to build a basic container home with a 100-120k budget and was wondering if this would be achievable? Thanks

    • Hey Chris

      The cost will depend on the size, finishes and labour put into your home. The cost of an average family home can vary from $1200 per square metre to $2500 per square metre depending on finishes and size. It would be a good idea to make a spreadsheet and price every part of the job in terms of material and labour. If I was going to fit out 3 containers I would expect to pay between $120,000 and $160,000.

      Cheers
      The Odpod Crew, Craig

  12. Hi Craig

    Just logged on to check out how it’s going – looks great! Must swing by again some weekend.

    All the best
    Dave

  13. We intend to build a shipping container house in Marysville and would love to come and see your house – is this possible?
    I would also be interested in knowing if you do engineering designs as a business – we have completed our own design on the computer but at the stage of looking at Architects/Draftsmen and an engineer to draw up the plans professionally.

    Look forward to hearing from you
    Janine

  14. I’m looking at w block of land in Upway to build a container house. I would love to have a chat to one of you and maybe get one of you to look at the lot to make sure it’s viable. Looking forward to hearing from you!

    • Hey Angela

      We would be happy to look at your block. You would also be welcome to come and visit.

      Regards,
      The Odpod Crew

  15. Hi guys,

    Congrats on the build.

    I’ve sent an email through to odpodcontainerhouse@gmail.com a few days ago – but haven’t heard back from you. My partner and I have purchased a block in Healesville and are looking to do something similar on a smaller scale – would love to have chat. Let me know if you need me to resend the email.

  16. Hi,
    I’m sorry if this question has been asked previously, but may I have the specification of the steel posts/ beams used to support the shipping containers. This information would be so much appreciated as I am trying to convince my architect into using this type of support system instead of using concrete pillars.
    Thank you in advance.

    • Hi Laura,

      The footing columns are 100mm Universal Columns (UC100) with 10mm thick lasercut baseplates that have been bolted to allthread that has been chemset into the 25 MPa concrete. Non shrink grout fills in the area between the baseplates and the concrete footing. Hope this helps.

      The Odpod Crew

  17. Where do l find defoamer and the plasticiser at ?
    Looking at doing a outdoor kitchen in my BBQ area .
    Do you have any knowledge on a good outdoor UV stable so it won’t yellow sealer ?

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