Aussie couple builds off-grid mobile home with 2 containers

Paul Chambers had began building a home out of two shipping containers as a project, but when his wife got tired of suburbia and put their four-bedroom home on the market, his project became the couple’s full-time home (Paul’s ebook: www.buildshippingcontainerhous­

Paul and Sarah Chambers were living in rural Scotland when Paul received a job offer in Australia. They packed their belongings and moved to a large home with a pool in an Australian suburb. After only a few months, they began to tire of spending so much of their income on their home. They also felt they’d lost touch with nature and a more active lifestyle (“there weren’t even any trails for walking”, explains Sarah).

So they sold their home and moved with Paul’s “project”: two shipping containers he’d been transforming into a kitchen/bathroom + bedroom/living room. They found someone willing to let them park their new home on their rural property in exchange for making improvements to the land.

When the couple first moved onto the property, the home was a very simple shelter and over the following three years, they built the containers into a proper home.

Their home is completely off the electric and water grids. When they first moved to the bush they used a 3kw Honda generator, but they’ve since installed 2Kw of photovoltaic panels and a bank of batteries and phased out the generator. They have enough energy to power their home with all its conventional appliances, including a standard fridge/freezer. For heating, they rely on firewood (collected from fallen trees on the property; they have “not cut down a single tree”). For air conditioning, they use fans and AC “during really hot days”.

In the beginning they had to rely on water deliveries, but Paul has since installed an extensive rainwater capture setup- both on the roof and gutters beneath the home- which provides for all their water needs: 65 square metres of rain water collection in 10,000 liters of storage. The indoor bathroom includes a shower, but Paul built an outdoor, open air bathtub which they heat with solar in the summertime.

They’ve also created an extensive vegetable garden inside a netted garden cage (after the animals and hot sun destroyed their first attempts). For eggs, they have two hen houses.

Paul has published an ebook explaining how he built the home including a step-by-step guide: buying and moving shipping containers, a wiring diagram and schematics, installing solar panels and a breakdown of costs.

Paul’s youtube channel:

Original story:

20 thoughts on “Aussie couple builds off-grid mobile home with 2 containers

  • August 21, 2017 at 7:17 pm

    Engineering marvel awesome👍👍👍👍👊👊👊👊👌👌👌✊✊✊✊😀😄😄😄😄😀😀😀😀😁😁😁😄😄😄😄👌👌👌👌👌👌👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍

  • August 21, 2017 at 8:03 pm

    Pure awsomeness you Rock guys love it

  • August 21, 2017 at 8:33 pm

    Awesome. Really awesome.

  • August 21, 2017 at 8:44 pm

    amazing.. what a great accomplishment .. beautiful way of life

  • August 21, 2017 at 9:07 pm

    Amazing job well done mate,only thing came to my mind there must be lots of deadly snakes and spiders,I Would prefer New Zealand,apart from the creepy crawlers,marvellous job kudos to both of you.

  • August 21, 2017 at 9:19 pm

    I would live that life in a minute. Bravo and thank you for sharing 🙌🏻💗🌸

  • August 21, 2017 at 10:00 pm

    Very nice what you have done. I live a similar style myself and I enjoy it very much. I didn't know anyone could actually live cheaper then I do but it appears you have me beat. I love my life now so much just like you..

  • August 21, 2017 at 10:35 pm

    I really enjoyed watching this.Would like to know how much it cost you to build such a simple and butiful home.

  • August 21, 2017 at 10:36 pm

    This my fellow humans is in my opinion..the meaning of "living well". Pure. Natural. Simple yet modern. Respectful and honorable. Appreciative. Etc..etc..etc.. Amazing work. Amazingly inspirational. Continued success and safety. Thank you for showing me that some form of semblance, humanity and harmony is achievable in the midst of all the problems,drama and negativity this world offers us on a daily basis..with a buffet waiting in the shadows in case you want more. Bravo!!

  • August 21, 2017 at 10:38 pm

    All round lovely to see hear and feel what they have achieved, no not everyone is that lucky, be it finance or the country you live in just has not got that land, but I am so happy for them, and yes the narrating was great too, and as the Mrs said if you can at least start somewhere with living your truth that's a start, even if it not yet 100%, wish you more days of happiness.

  • August 21, 2017 at 11:15 pm

    The best video on this topic I've seen yet, learned so much in 44:44

  • August 22, 2017 at 12:04 am


  • August 22, 2017 at 12:35 am

    If I was building a container home I would have used twist locks like they use on the container ships to hold down the containers , I know this because I retired from a state ports  as a crane operator .you put the twist locks on the bottom corners, and have a concreate slab to hook them on, that way when you have a wind storm your home will not slide down that hill to the left of your home.

  • August 22, 2017 at 1:28 am

    i love it, my dream too

  • August 22, 2017 at 2:22 am

    I like this one

  • August 22, 2017 at 2:56 am

    Thank you.

  • August 22, 2017 at 3:34 am

    Genius! Absolutely wonderful video, I loved following the building progress, rather than just a finished home tour.

  • August 22, 2017 at 3:40 am

    Good job need to paint it white so it's cooler

  • August 22, 2017 at 3:50 am

    Beautiful home and very educational video. Thank you for sharing

  • August 22, 2017 at 4:19 am

    Love the makeover convert into a home. Nice live off grid. Nice…

Comments are closed.