There are over half a billion sea containers on earth. These storage boxes have been used as transport covers for goods of all kinds for around 20 years. The steel boxes are extremely robust and waterproof. At the end of their normal period of use, sea containers can be purchased cheaply and used for other purposes. For example, as a garden shed. In this article, we show which steps are necessary for this and what you have to consider during implementation.
Step 1: Inform
Sea containers come in different sizes. Standard sizes are 20, 40 and 45 feet. A 20-foot sea container is about six meters long and two and a half meters wide and just as high. This corresponds to around 37.5 cubic meters of space (or 3,500 shoe boxes) with a floor area of 15 square meters. This roughly corresponds to a spacious garden shed.
A 40-foot container is twice as long, but there are also 6-foot shipping containers.
Building permit required?
Sea containers are defined by the state building regulations as non-intended structures or temporary construction and are therefore subject to approval. A building permit is required.
The details and structure of the building permit vary from municipality to municipality. That is why you should familiarize yourself with the local regulations before buying. Have the statements confirmed in writing.
Step 2: Decide and buy
Once you have decided on a type of container, you can purchase it on the Internet. You can buy sea containers from Braun Container, for example, or you can find bargains on eBay or other classified ad portals on the Internet. For a used sea container, 1,000 to 5,000 euros must be estimated.
Added to this are the costs for transporting the sea container. The designated parking space must be accessible for the truck.
Step 3: Conversion of the sea container into a garden house
A sea container is made of steel and is correspondingly heavy. You will have to put a solid foundation in the ground for the future steel garden house. Such a point foundation is suitable here:
Once the container is in its stable place, the conversion can begin.
First, the openings for windows, doors and supply lines are cut into steel. This work as well as the subsequent insulation and the quality of windows, floors and doors depend on the individual requirements and wishes. This also applies to the supply line for electricity and possibly even water. See also the article “Garden house – what to watch out for?”.
In general, however, the following work should be carried out:
- Protect the sea container from the weather. This is best achieved with an additional roof over the container. Maybe you can set up a solar system on the container right away?
- Sand off existing rust and protect the entire container from rust with appropriate paint.
- Use an exhaust system to ensure the necessary ventilation of the container so that no condensation/mold can form inside.
The following Youtube series shows such a conversion to an apartment. This effort certainly does not have to be made. But the renovation measures can easily be modified for a garden shed.
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