So, who needs some renters?

12 Sep

I’m currently working on a project where we’re turning a big field into an Equine boarding facility complete with ISBU Barn, ISBU Manager’s Residence and… you guessed it… ISBU Tack Rooms.

The entire project is comprised of structures built from a dozen 40′ High Cube ISBUs.

We’d been discussing the “client storage” dilemma for a while. Obviously, horse owners want a place to store feed, tack and gear. And, they want a place to wash down their horses after a days’ riding. Facility owners want waterproof buildings that are durable, low maintenance and basically vandal proof. Then it hit me… like an ISBU falling from a crane.

Simply take a 40′ High Cube ISBU (Shipping Container)  and divide it up into 8×10 units. You want a High Cube box for this job because you want the extra headroom, right? <wink!>  Leave the end doors alone and simply add a trio of doors to one side.

ISBU Tack Rooms x4

Push this back up against your pasture fencing and you have ready-made tack rooms AND structure to hang an awning off of to grant those horses some shade in the sunny stuff.  Do it right and run the automatic waterers along this same fence-line and you have the ability to pull water right onto that box – using the water line that feeds the automatic waterers –  to supply a washdown area for the horses on the “closed” end of the ISBU.

These do NOT require a foundation, folks – just drop them onto railroad ties. Easy Peasy.

This led me to think about several families who were interested in dropping a box or two onto their properties to supply small “tiny house” style housing as rentals. The objective was simply to spend “skinny money” to make a little extra each month to help generate cashflow.

Why not just build a storage unit box or two (in a similar configuration to these) and then rent the units out monthly. Around here, an 8×10 storage unit rents for $75 a month. That means this same box, turned into a storage unit will bring in $300 a month. We’re currently paying about $2400 for 40′ ISBUs in decent shape. Spend an extra grand on modifications and you’re still making $200 profit year one and then the box is paid off. After that, it’s just an ATM spitting out Benjamins every month.

Tack Rooms - End UnitA pair of these boxes placed back to back (with a Standing Seam Metal shed roof over the top) will not only supply you with $600 a month in cashflow, they’ll catch water you can divert to irrigation or landscaping, easy.

In some parts of the US, you won’t even HAVE to insulate them. (Of course, you know how I love SPF. I would insulate them if only to help “temp control” the boxes to protect client contents.)

Boxes in this configuration would also lend themselves to worker housing, say during seasonal use in agriculture. Put a pair of bunks and a closet in each 8×10 unit and then turn that big “opening” end into a bathroom/shower. Run these housing modules spaced apart from each other about 28 feet. Now add a 20′ box equipped as a camp kitchen on one end (right in the middle of that opening so that you have a “doorway” on either side of it) and deck the middle. Cover this with billboard tarps or an old cargo parachute, and voila! You have a farm camp, a fishing camp, a hunting camp for 12… or a place to put those unwanted relatives who drive all the way up from places like California to freeload.. um… er… visit you for the summer!

And when the season is over (or you run out of patience with your relatives) you simply send everyone packing (TIP: I’ve found that brandishing a large shotgun while hollering loudly and firing indiscriminately into the air helps)  and then padlock the boxes shut until the next year. They’re  weather resistant and solid steel. They’ll be fine until the next crop of occupants arrive.

RR Avatar

One Response to “So, who needs some renters?”

  1. John Pulliam September 12, 2013 at 4:18 pm #

    Dang, son… You’re almost as creative as I am! I still wish I had heard about this before pulling the trigger on my present house, we would be in better shape now than we are.

Comments are closed.