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Are Shipping Container Homes Legal in Nevada? Tips, Facts, & FAQ

Container home

Owning a home is a great experience, and if you can get a tiny house, like those created using shipping containers, it’s much more affordable. States like Nevada would be great for container homes because the weather is nice and there’s plenty of room for growth. This causes many people to wonder if it’s legal to build a shipping container house there. The short answer is yes. Nevada is aware of the need for compact, environmentally friendly housing, and it allows you to make your tiny home in the state. However, keep reading as we discuss what you need to do before you start building and the advantages and disadvantages of these homes, so you can be better informed.

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How Do I Build a Shipping Container Home in Nevada?

Choose Your Container

The first step is to choose an appropriate shipping container and design your home. We recommend using a Nevada-based architect familiar with the state’s laws and building codes. This can help speed up the permit process because there is less chance that there will be a problem with the design. A skilled architect can also give you more choices.

Obtain a Permit

Once you design the home, you must acquire a permit to build it. Applying for the permit is not difficult and typically requires you to provide the plan that you and the architect created. After the project is approved and it is determined that it follows all building codes, you will get the permit, and you can start to build your home.

home office in container house in backyard
Image By: Ground Picture, Shutterstock

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Will Acquiring a Permit Take a Long Time?

Unfortunately, it can take a long time to acquire your permit, with many taking 4 months or more to get approved, depending on several factors. If there are any problems with the plan that you and the architect create, it will take longer to obtain a permit, as you will need to make the appropriate changes and resubmit the plan. The foundation, appearance, size, and accessibility are often causes of concern. Other points of interest include plumbing, electricity, and fire protection.

Tips and Tricks for Choosing a Shipping Container Home

  • Take the time to think about how much space everyone in your home will need to move around comfortably. You will also want to consider how much room your items will take up. The more family you need to accommodate, the more space you will need, and it is easy to underestimate that when designing a container home
  • Choosing a high-quality container will provide a long-lasting home. Many low-cost containers break down quickly and can cost you more money over time.
  • Ensure that the container that you choose is well-insulated to help reduce heating and cooling costs.
  • If you’re choosing a used shipping container for your home, ensure that it is high quality and without defects.
  • In many cases, shipping container manufacturers can make a container to your specifications.
  • Make sure you create a realistic budget before you start building. Permits and supplies can quickly add up to higher costs than you anticipate. Many people recommend adding 20% to your estimates as a contingency allowance to safeguard against miscalculations.

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A shipping container home is legal in Nevada and only requires an easy-to-obtain permit to build. These homes are inexpensive, good for the environment, and easy to design. The dry air and little rainfall in Nevada will help your shipping container last many years before it needs replacing, and if it has good insulation, its small size will make it easy and cheap to keep cool during the hot summer months.

Featured Image Credit: Jed Owen, Unsplash


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