Who really wants to fit in with the crowd and go for the everyday, mundane, typical house? You may not even realize it, but there are way more viable options than going for a house, both in terms of creativity, eco-friendliness (houses take up a ton of energy) and also price. If you’re looking for something a bit different, read on to find our favorite creative ideas for an eco-friendly home.

Shipping Container Homes

This is one of the lesser-known ways of living, but a shipping container home is a hot topic in today’s society – everyone’s talking about shipping container homes at the moment, and for good reason! These homes made from old shipping containers have a unique look, that can be stylized to your personal taste. In fact, using more than one shipping container can give you a geometric design that, when planned the right way, can look modern and enticing, or if old retro is more your thing, you can go for an old-fashioned, classic design (different colors would definitely give your home a bit of a retro spark!).

You can decide everything, from the size of your rooms (by joining containers), to how tall – everything is in your control. They’re also incredibly eco-friendly, giving you access to the world of nature and the homes themselves, being made from old shipping containers that are past their usability, meaning you’re making something amazing out of something that was going to be thrown away. And, besides – who doesn’t want a house that they can say has been all over the world?

Earth Houses

There’s nothing eco-friendlier than using our very own earth to make houses – it may sound strange, but these houses are not only incredibly good for the environment, they look really good too. There are a few different options, so you can suit your own taste. The first is a cob house, where your home is built up out of straw and earth mixed together, forming a sturdy structure. This means you have a lot of say over how your house is built, what the layout is like, and how it looks. You want a curved roof? You got it!

Rammed earth houses are similar, where earth is packed into already existing walls, building up a strong wall. You can also opt for earthbags – believe it or not, you can build your house out of bags packed with earth and other natural materials. This is the most unique material you’ll see being used to build up a house, and gives it a really unique look. It’s also good for insulation, as you can pack the bags full of materials like wood fiber, meaning it’s not hard to keep warm. And of course, as you build up the walls yourself, again you have a lot of control over the layout and design of the house, meaning you can add your own personal touch.

Straw Houses

We all know the story of the three little pigs, but if he’d used this particular straw house, the wolf wouldn’t have made it anywhere. Surprisingly, straw is an incredibly sturdy material, and is great for reusing straw when it’s no longer needed by farmers. This makes it incredibly cheap, meaning you can really go big with the design, and give your home that warm, textured look. Straw is also a great insulator, meaning you’ll easily be able to keep yourself warm, also reducing your heating costs – this is not only good for your wallet, but reduces your reliance on fossil fuels, meaning less greenhouse gases are clogging up the atmosphere.

These three designs are our favorite alternatives to the boring, average house, and will easily make you stand out from the rest.

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