We’ve all heard the age-old adage ‘fail to prepare, prepare to fail’. If you want to ensure that you’ve created the perfect plan for your tiny container home, then we’re here to give you the low down on how to do so.
With space at a premium in a container home, it’s essential to create a floorplan that considers everything you need and where it will go inside your shipping container.
Decide How You Want to Plan
Some people like to use floorplan software to arrange their items, others prefer to go with the old-fashioned pen and paper method. Specialist tiny home designers will utilise CAD capabilities to map out your space, and your build. This saves you a lot of time and effort when compared to moving physical items around the space!
If you want to go down the pen and paper route, we’d suggest using grid paper, so you have the correct dimensions. Use these to create the interior of your home to scale, then complete the same process with the items that you need within the container home. You can also annotate the items and colour code them too.
No matter which way you choose to create your floorplan, take your time and try out as many combinations as you can. This will help you to get the best configuration in your tiny home.
Pay Attention to the Outlets and Plumbing
One of the things you can’t move so easily are the electrical outlets in your home. You don’t want to have to run a lot of extension cables to reach your coffee machine or TV! Mark these out on your floorplan to get your items as close to the sources as you can.
You can follow the same process for plumbing too, placing the amenities that you need near the inflow and outflow points. Additional pipes and fittings can be expensive so cutting how far they need to travel is much more economical.
If you’re going for a bespoke shipping container home, then you can work with the provider to place these amenities exactly where you want them.
Start with the Large Items
The best way to start your planning is with the large items – like your refrigerator, bed, and counters. Placing these first allows you to move the smaller items around them and customise the space. Be careful not to try and fit too much into your small home, otherwise it will feel crowded and overwhelming.
Look for furniture and items that pack away or serve more than one purpose to really maximise the living space in the home. Adding lighting and shelving to the walls of the home can declutter the floor space too.
Checking out other small homes can give you the inspiration that you need to design your floorplan. You’ll notice that many of these homeowners go for a minimalist design, which can make the home feel larger. Sleek, modern designs and neutral colours can transform your shipping container into a home.
Creating a mood board can help you envision how the home will come together. This is your chance to mix and match paint, fabric and furnishings before you go ahead and buy the materials. Many amateur interior designers use Pinterest to bring their ideas together, as it’s easy to collate and share images that you love.
Break Up the Space
Using partitions, different colours, and partial walls can break up your shipping container into sections. If you’re the kind of person that likes having dedicated areas for eating, sleeping, and relaxing then this can make your home feel more comfortable.
When partitioning your space, ensure you use elements that allow light to shine through the home. Otherwise, this can make your space darker and more oppressive. Glass walls and paper partitions are ideal for this purpose.
Consider Additional Rooms
One of the best things about shipping containers is that they’re modular, so if you need more space you can add another room to your home. If you’re struggling to fit everything into one container without overcrowding, then it may be time to increase capacity. These can often be stacked on top of each other, or side-by-side depending on the configuration you have in mind.
Once you have your floorplan ready, you can get started on the work of moving into and decorating your new home. Having this guide in place can be helpful in the long-term as you can check back and adjust your plan as needed.