Putting a new twist on “Bump and Grind”

Greetings, Campers!

It’s that time of year…

You know, that time when (faced with the winter snow and ice outside) thoughts drift (no “snowdrift” pun intended) to “things Corten”.

YardDawgs - webDon’t get me wrong. We love the view into our “yards”  here in Montana. It’s that time of year when we have to chase off the “locals” so our horses and cattle can eat in peace. Note the big, old boy in the middle with a broken antler. I’m thinking that he’s a troublemaker! LOL!

Many of our building families are eagerly exploring their hopes for Spring, as they begin to draw final lines for their ISBU Home projects.

As they do this, we’re seeing a LOT of indicators that demonstrate that the US isn’t in “recovery” in the housing areas. A lot of investment is happening in Real Estate, but it’s not in the areas you’d expect. It’s in the “rental housing” arena. As times grow hard, more and more families and individuals are renting in lieu of buying that “dream home”.

We’ve received many, many responses lately from singles and couples asking about affordable ISBU (Shipping Container) solutions that use a single 40′ ISBU as structure.

We’ve all seen the medium and even high density buildings being created using these boxes to house people.

High Speed Man Camp - from ISBUs - Oil Country

And, YES… it does make us feel like we’re looking at sardines packed in a can.

But, what about if you simply bump the box out to gain additional footage?

Adding 4′ to a box in width isn’t particularly challenging. In fact, we do it all the time (usually to gain an entry foyer or a space for built-ins). All you are doing is expanding that ISBU to sit on a 420 square foot footprint.

And, dropping it onto pilings that you cast by hand (using Sonotubes and concrete) makes it a no-brainer.

We’ve shown you this before, but I think it’s time to show it to you again. 

Imagine this as a Mother-In-Law apartment or even as an income apartment on your existing property. It’d make a nice guest house as well.

  • Do you have a student in High School or College itching to “get out of the house” without leaving the property?
  • Do you have a rental property that needs more units that are potentially duplexed or even stacked?
  • Are you looking for a quick-build vacation cabin or resort-type destination?
  • Are you looking for a “tiny house” type residence?

The “bump” wall is perfect for additional glazing (windows not shown) or even a big sliding glass door and deck.

Or, executed in “rowhouse style”, you could add a front and rear deck to this lil gem and it becomes quite luxurious. Imagine this footprint “sawtoothed” (staggered) so that exterior decks weren’t connected. All you’d do is offset the boxes by 8′ or so.

And these aren’t “sterile little eyesores” either, folks. They’re just metal boxes. You can make them look like anything you want. They are easily adapted to embrace existing architecture and neighborhoods. In fact, once you side or veneer them, you’re hard-pressed to determine their “shipping container” roots. The possibilities are endless.

While this unit was originally designed to be “home built” by “sweat equity” families, it could easily be executed by builders and contractors without a ton of headaches.

(For all you “naysayers” out there, this home has been built by “building families” several times at the $50 per square foot mark. Your costs for construction will vary with location and your ability to recycle, reuse and repurpose materials that others take for granted.)

And you don’t have to “DIY” this home if you’re not handy with tools. While the price per square foot would rise (because builders and sub-contractors don’t work for free) it would still be quite cost effective.

The solutions are out there, folks. You just have to reach for them.

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