Living away from the city has always been appealing. A place with a lot of green trees, animals and not much traffic just seems peaceful. Thing is, there are quite a few people who desire to get away from the busy city life style and want to simplify it by living off the grid.
The issue is, can I make my container home off grid? Making the decision to live off grid is a big change from the city life and the short answer to this is, yes. You can make your container home off grid. What steps should someone take to prepare to live off grid life in a container home?
Before anyone can move off grid they’ll need to do some research and see what places fit their ideal place to live off the grid. There are some places that allow off the grid living such as:
Although this list has a few places, check with your county to see if there are any off living grid spots in your state.
Another good reason to live off the grid in your container home is that land farther away from the city tends to be cheaper and taxes are less, so you can get more acreage for your money.
Now that you’ve done some research to see where you’d prefer to live, a good thing to remember is that living in any home will require maintenance. Living in a container home means your home will consist of metal and climate can damage your home. A container home is very durable but it can still rust or get damaged by other natural disasters.
Rust-oleum paint is a good product to have, as it will help to keep your metal home from rusting. It has a lifespan of 25 years but with Mother Nature beating down on a container home it may shorten the life span or the protection of rust-oleum paint.
Another good tip, container homes can get blown around in a strong hurricane so anchoring it can help to prevent it from moving or turning over. This is just addressing the metal frame. If your container home has wood, it may need wood treatment for termites. Further maintenance will be dependent on what you get for your container home.
Water is an essential. You may discover that the place you most likely have your container home does not have water nearby.
A few things someone can do is make a catchment system for their water supply. A large 275 gallon reconditioned IBC tote tank can help to hold a reserve of water catchment.
If you do live near a body of water like a river, you may want to find a way to use that water. You may need to find a way to purify the water, but if it’s fresh, that may not be the case.
When living off grid, the nearest store may be more than an hour away. It may be easier to make a greenhouse and grow your own food. Another thing about living off the grid is that you may need to hunt for your food or raise your own livestock.
Also, living away from stores and growing your own foods, you’ll need to learn preservation methods for food. A storage room can also help to store food and keep a reserve in case of an emergency.
When living off the grid in your container home, you may want electricity to have some way to have a warm bath, or light to read your favorite book.
Here are some alternative ideas to have that:
Solar panels are a good way to get energy from the sun and have it stored in a battery bank.
Finding a way to also use water nearby if available someone could use hydropower. Hydropower can be collected with a turbine that uses the flow of water to create electricity.
If the place you’ve chosen to live is quite windy, there is the option to also use windmills to help generate energy.
Finally, some people may opt for a generator. This is a good option too but it will require fuel to keep running.
Being out in nature, there’s likely a chance there aren’t going to be bathrooms nearby and you’ll need to have a way to get rid of waste. Look at the federal guidelines on waste disposal for your future off grid location.
They’ll tell you what you can and cannot do when it comes to waste products. Some people may want to do compost with their waste and although that’s resourceful, the county you’re interested in may not allow that.
Laws and Regulations
One important thing that you’ll need to research is the laws and regulations to have your container home off the grid.
Looking into the county you’d like to live in for their zoning regulations and building codes. This will help you know what is allowed and what is a big “no go”.
I’d love to live off the grid in a container home, but frankly, I do realize that there is a lot of preparation involved. I can find ways to get electricity to our container home, as there are many options. We prefer the mountains, so my container home will need insulation, as it will get cold.
We would like to have more than one container home connected, so I’ll need to see what zoning regulations and building codes are permitted for us to be able to do this.
Overall, this is quite the adventure and I know many people are willing to jump at this for their peace of mind, but there is a lot of preparation to consider. I personally think it’s worth it!