An Inside Look At Costa Rica's Black Container Home Movement
Photo Credit: Davia Shannon

Photo Credit: Davia Shannon

An Inside Look At Costa Rica's Black Container Home Movement

black expat , Costa Rica
Parker Diakite
Parker Diakite Jun 24, 2021

When Davia Shannon left America for Puerto Viejo de Talamanca on the coast of Costa Rica, she wanted to find a sustainable way to live comfortably with her family.  After conducting some thorough research, she decided that container-home living would be the best option. 

“It was an economical way to live here in the south Caribbean coast of Costa Rica where my overhead and my monthly expenses are almost nothing,” she told Travel Noire. 

Similar to the tiny home movement, container homes are growing in popularity. They are exactly what you imagine: homes designed and constructed by metal shipping containers used for carrying goods on trains, trucks, and ships. 

Container Home Costa Rica
Photo Credit: Davia Shannon

The container home industry is expected to grow by $6 billion between 2020 and 2024, according to data from Technavio. Data from Rise attributes the homes growing popularity to the fact that building costs are predictable and more affordable than building a traditional home. 

And Davia agrees.

“They’re super insulated,” she says. “The Caribbean is super hot and super humid, but the containers maintain their temperature at all times. I knew that we wouldn’t have to pay for air conditioning and all we would need is fans and proper ventilation.” 

She’s now working to get more people to join the container movement through her companies Los Suenos Puerto Viejo and Life-A-Holic Costa Rica. She’s especially focusing on aspiring Black expats who want to move or relocate but are hesitant because of the costs. Davia says the container-home lifestyle cuts out some of the permitting processes, which can get pricey. 

Container Home Costa Rica
Photo Credit: Davia Shannon

“You don’t need a permit to build container homes because they’re already built.  You would need a permit to build a roof, a floor, and walls to make sure the structure is solid for the people who live there, so the roof won’t cave in on them,” says Davia. “With container homes, you do away with all of that.” 

Davia says container homes are the best and quickest way to start a new life in Costa Rica and the best part? You don’t need to have prior knowledge of building.  

“It doesn’t matter where you come from. If I can do it, so can you,” says Davia. 

Container Home Costa Rica
Photo Credit: Davia Shannon