Pre-designing helps your container house architects save time!

Last week, a reader of mine asked the following:
“Hey Christoph, I have decided that I will build a staggered-double with two containers.  I am going to begin the design tonight.  Other than things like lintels, what can I put into my drawing to save time with the architect?”


(FYI, ‘Lintels are simply reinforcements we put above openings to offer more structural support. For example, when we cut out bigger pieces of steel from the containers, we’re removing structural support.  By building a lintel (with lumber (two, 2×6’s)) we’re able to give back the strength and stability).


The answer to my reader friend was this:

“Make a pre-plan package for your architect. Include 4 things:

  1. Make a few drawings and include them.  From different angles, (elevation, top-view and floor-plans).  Don’t need to make them perfect. And know that your architect will do away with design elements that don’t make sense or don’t look good.
  2. Add a description of the township and of the location where the home may go. He or she will be researching homes that have been built there in the past and will be assisting you in gaining a building permit in the future. (If a building permit is the route you’re going for). If you have a land survey, add that.
  3. Write up and include your wish list. What you want, what you need. What you don’t like or want.
  4. Add to this package few photos of existing buildings which have the feel and look which you are envisioning.

Tada! This will make your architect happy.”