A container home built right here in Johannesburg | homify | homify
Error: Cannot find module './CookieBanner' at eval (webpack:///./app/assets/javascripts/webpack/react-components_lazy_^\.\/.*$_namespace_object?:3646:12) at at process._tickCallback (internal/process/next_tick.js:189:7) at Function.Module.runMain (module.js:696:11) at startup (bootstrap_node.js:204:16) at bootstrap_node.js:625:3

A container home built right here in Johannesburg

Johannes van Graan Johannes van Graan
Modern houses by homify Modern
Loading admin actions …

So many times here on homify we have showcased container homes that are offering people striking and unique ways of small-scale living – but on overseas turf.

Well, today that changes, as today’s homify 360° is proudly South African! Architectural firm Architecture For A Change, based in good old Johannesburg, includes a stylish and charming little container home in their portfolio, which is definitely a dream come true for those of us who have kept wishing that the container-home trend would kick off on local soil. 

But first, a little background on container homes. There are potentially hundreds of thousands of shipping containers worldwide that will never be used for cargo again, instead piling up in junk yards. Architects and builders grabbed hold of this opportunity not too long ago, recycling many of these cargo containers and converting them into friendly, affordable, and environmentally friendly homes for the masses. 

Let’s get ’local en lekker’ by taking a look at these South-African-based cargo homes.

An unexpected residence

A space of 14-square metres is not a lot to work with, yet if you’re an experienced architectural team with a creative portfolio, you can manage just fine. 

Through the use of calculated modifications, our expert team conjured up this relatively cost-effect (compared to other housing options) home. Large portions of steel were sliced away from the steel shell and replaced with doors, windows, and other openings that can easily be opened and closed. 

Above we can see what the container home looks like, all closed up and about to be transported.

Contemporary cuteness

Exterior Modern houses by homify Modern



Since our experts were able to insulate and complete the container home off-site, time was on their side in order to customise what was just an empty cargo box. 

Here we can see a linear-panelled element that was applied to the one exterior side for a modern and homely touch.

Welcome, welcome!

Exterior open Modern houses by A4AC Architects Modern
A4AC Architects

Exterior open

A4AC Architects

Before you can say “1, 2, 3”, the linear cladding that covered the side wall is lifted out to create a shaded area right next to the container home’s main living area. 

As we can now see, full-height glass doors were also included right behind the linear design, making for easy access between the interiors and shaded outdoor setting. And thanks to the glass panes, the interiors of the house will enjoy a fresh dose of sunshine and warmth.

Hidden facilities

Service latch Modern houses by homify Modern

Service latch


The container’s original steel doors were kept in place on the other side, and when these open up, we can see the functional elements of the home. This side contains the circuit boards, gas storage and electronic boxes, all of which do their relevant jobs to keep the homeowners living a comfortable lifestyle. 

The container home’s interiors are powered generally via the main power grid, while rooftop solar panels take care of other facilities’ power usage. And to cut down the usage of air conditioners, the pitched roof is ventilated, using the air as a passive cooling system.

Interior inspection

Contrasting with the royal blue tone of the exterior facade, a bright red was brought in to spice up the interior section. Interestingly, that vibrant red wall/sliding door separates the kitchen space from the bedroom and attached bathroom. 

Although the kitchen may not be the most spacious or chic space ever created, it does contain all the necessary facilities that are needed for preparing meals and storing your average culinary requirements.

The cute bathroom

We close off our glimpse at this local creation by peeping inside the bathroom, designed fantastically to make the best use of its small dimensions. Who would have expected that a bathtub would be included in this limited-legroom home? 

A slim touch of monochrome mosaic tiles ensure a splash of pattern, and those neutrals will go stunning with any additional bathroom accessories and décor that the owners will be adding later. 

Would you like to see more examples of container living? Then click right through to: The Cute Container Home With Amazing Style.

The perfect space, or not really your style? Tell us what you think in our comments section, situated below.
Modern houses by Casas inHAUS Modern

Need help with your home project?
Get in touch!

Discover home inspiration!