Sarah House Utah is a small, non-profit organization dedicated to implementing innovative, affordable housing solutions in the Salt Lake region. The organization is a part of Crossroads Urban Center, where Jeffrey White (president of Sarah House Utah) has volunteered for over 30 years.
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White's first project, "Sarah House" was spurred by an encounter he had with a homeless artist in San Francisco, who was about to be evicted from the abandoned property she called home. Sarah was surrounded by materials that White knew could easily be re-purposed to provide basic, low-cost housing. In 2008, White set out to make his vision a reality, and constructed a model home in his own driveway made of two 20-foot shipping containers.
A self-claimed "unrelenting idealist," White was determined to show his community how shipping containers could easily be converted into green-minded, safe, and affordable housing. Despite the bureaucratic obstacles White had to overcome to get necessary permits, local government officials (and the community) responded extremely well to the project. The first Sarah House was put up for sale in 2013 (available solely to low-income buyers), with an initial listing price of $135,000. Unlike the model home, Sarah House was constructed with two 40-foot shipping containers, but with the same low-cost, seismically sound, and eco-friendly materials as the model home.
In this video you can see the shipping container home for yourself:
Sarah House Utah has expanded their portfolio in the past year with The Sarah House Mini, introduced in April. The Sarah House Mini is described as a hybrid build (20 foot container and traditional framing) ideal for an accessory dwelling. You can keep tabs on Sarah House Utah's projects and progress on Facebook.
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