What do you need your container for?
If you are storing items for your home or business, you will probably want a container that is wind and watertight. Used containers might have a few dings and surface rust, but they can be bought in good shape. These used containers are wind and watertight, have working doors, and solid floors, yet they can often be obtained for over 40% less. If you purchase used shipping containers to conserve cash, you might be able to save thousands of dollars.
Are you going to be modifying your container?
Many people are buying containers to use as homes and shelters. There are many modifications that can make a container into a building, including:
- Roll-up Doors – similar to a garage door that a self-storage facility would have, usually either six or eight feet wide.
- Man Doors – these are “normal” doors for humans, typically 36 inches wide.
- Windows – these can be various types of windows, but most common is a vinyl window where the frame is made out of box tubing, installed after a hole is cut, and then the window is installed into the frame.
- Vents – if watertightness is a goal, vents may actually *not* be a good idea, but for certain applications a vent maybe desirable. Smaller containers often come with vents in them; if chemicals are being stored then a vent could potentially allow outgassing to occur.
- Flooring – one inch thick marine grade plywood that has been treated with chemicals to be resistant to rot and insect infestation is very commonly used in shipping containers.
- Electricity – like any structure, wiring for electricity can be created, depending on availability and local building and electrical codes.
- Plumbing – this is done, but more rarely and is typically seen if the containers are being used as some sort of living area. Expertise in installing this is very specialized.
Generally, these modifications can be very expensive. You can purchase used shipping containers to conserve cash in order to afford these costly modifications. Even if a used container has a dent or rust spot on the side, a modification might require that wall to be cut out anyway.
Are you shipping the container?
Most of the time, new and expensive containers are certified to be shipped. Containers that are certified tend to be more expensive because of their designation. If you are not shipping your container to another country, there is no need to purchase a container that has been certified. If you do buy a certified container, you might find you’re wasting money on certification that you do not really need.
If you purchase used shipping containers to conserve cash, you can still get a quality container. For storage at your residence or business to keep things dry, a used container can be just as effective as a new one, for less money. If you are already planning on modifying a container, a used unit can be modified just as a new one can. And if you are not shipping a container, there is no reason to bother getting a certified container, which is much more expensive. Overall, there are many approaches for saving money and still get a solid container that will fulfill your requirements.