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How to Convert Jackleg Cabins into Sleeping Accommodation


Whether you’re setting up a funky hotel with cabin accommodation or you need somewhere for your employees to spend the night during festivals and events, cabins are sturdy and versatile structures that can be converted into comfortable sleeping rooms. Like shipping containers, which are often converted into garages, holiday lodges and home offices, jackleg cabins are well-suited for conversions. In addition to sleeping accommodation, jackleg cabins can be converted into a whole range of different buildings, from first aid facilities to temporary classrooms.


However you plan to convert your jackleg cabin, there are some key factors to consider and tips to follow. These are especially important to consider if you’re creating a space where people can spend the night. To help you out, we’ve shared a few of the key things you need to think about when converting a cabin into sleeping accommodation.



Insulate the cabin


One of the most important steps in any cabin conversion is insulating the walls and roof. Hiring a cabin from a trusted portable buildings supplier often means this step will have been taken care of for you, but if it hasn’t been, it’s vitally important that you insulate the cabin yourself. Otherwise, the cabin won’t be safe or comfortable to sleep in. In the summer, your guests will be at risk of overheating and in the winter, it’ll be very difficult to stay warm.


Insulating the cabin will help to keep it a comfortable temperature all year round. Ideally, you want to insulate your chosen cabin with a sandwich panel system. This is one of the most effective insulation structures and is also one of the most popular. When choosing the insulation for your cabin, make sure to find a fire-safe material and check which legal requirements you will be obligated to meet. This will help you keep your accommodation guests safe while staying compliant.



Increase cabin security


Security is another factor that is critically important to take into account when converting a shipping container or jackleg cabin. Not only do you need to keep your guests safe, but you also need to consider the safety of the cabin itself. If it’s left unattended, intruders could force access and spend the night unauthorised. Or, it could become a target for other crimes, such as theft and vandalism. Of course, these are eventualities you want to avoid at all costs.


Again, when you hire a jackleg cabin from a reputable supplier, sturdy security measures come as standard. For example, at Manchester Cabins we supply all jackleg cabins with durable Yale locks. We also fit wire mesh to the windows of our cabins to make it difficult for intruders to gain access. This means that no matter how you plan to use the cabin, whether it’s a temporary classroom or portable sleeping arrangement, you’ll have peace of mind that it’s safe and secure.



Install electricity and plumbing


For a cabin to be liveable, it needs electricity and access to running water. Otherwise, your overnight guests won’t be able to turn the lights on and off, heat the cabin or boil the kettle for a morning cup of tea! Jackleg cabins can be fitted with electrical outlets and sinks, as can shipping containers, but it’s important to discuss your exact requirements with your cabin supplier before you make any modifications. You may be able to hire a cabin that already has the infrastructure for electricity and plumbing, which will save you time and money in the long run.


Additionally, remember that installing electricity and plumbing is a job for the professionals. Make sure you ask your cabin hire company if this is something they can arrange for you instead of trying to tackle the job yourself.



Lay comfortable flooring


Nobody wants to sleep on a metal floor! No matter what type of cabin you’re converting, making sure it has soft, non-slip flooring is important. You should also find flooring that will help you insulate the property, keeping it cool on warm days and retaining heat during the winter months.


While carpet is a popular choice due to its versatility and cosiness, you may also want to consider maintenance costs. If lots of different guests will be spending the night in the cabin, or you’re going to use the cabin in muddy, dusty or dirty environments, perhaps a wipe-clean flooring option is more appropriate. There are plenty of cost-effective flooring types that are easy to lay and simple to maintain, such as vinyl tiling and laminate flooring, so you might want to consider these instead of a fluffy rug. If you’re set on laying carpet, opt for one with a short pile.



Fit worktops and utilities


As we’ve mentioned, electricity and plumbing can often be fitted in jackleg cabins and shipping containers. This makes it easier than ever for overnight guests to get comfortable and enjoy the same conveniences as you would in a permanent building. With this in mind, you will also need to consider the fitting of worktops and utilities. Once fitted, worktops give the cabin users space to store items and prepare basic meals. Sinks are also extremely important, with running water allowing guests to pour a glass of water, fill the kettle or wash up.


To make your sleeping accommodation as user-friendly as possible, you should also consider some of the appliances that will make your cabin feel cosy. For example, you may also want to include a microwave or toaster for guests to use. However, do check the voltage limits supported by your cabin’s electrical wiring before you include any appliances. Using appliances that aren’t compatible will put too much pressure on your electrical system, which could be dangerous.



Source comfortable furniture


It goes without saying that sleeping accommodation requires comfortable furniture! Whether the cabin will be a quirky suite for hotel guests or a place where your employees can sleep during shift breaks, it needs to have enough furniture to serve its purpose. You may also want to fit extra furnishings, such as seats and a dining table, depending on how much space is available.


When sourcing furniture for the cabin, make sure to pay attention to size and weight restrictions. The weight restrictions of the cabin are even more important to consider if you have two jackleg cabins stacked vertically.


N.B. It is possible to hire double-stacked jackleg cabin units if you would like the additional sleeping space. These give you the option to host more people while taking advantage of the vertical space available.



Make the cabin sleep-friendly


Once you’ve taken care of the practical aspects of the cabin conversion, it’s time to make the place sleep-friendly! This includes finding soft furnishings, such as curtains, to make sure anyone sleeping there isn’t woken up by the sun early every morning. It also means sourcing bedding and any decorative items that can make the cabin feel homely.


Ultimately, the furnishings and accessories you buy depend on the way you plan to use the cabin. If it’s going to be temporary sleeping accommodation for your event security staff, finding rugs and framed photos for the walls may not be a necessity! However, if the cabin is going to be used as longer-term sleeping accommodation, there’s no harm in paying attention to detail.



Manchester Cabins: Versatile and durable jackleg cabins for hire


Looking for a reliable and reputable jackleg cabin hire company? Manchester Cabins is here for you. Our jackleg cabins are available to hire at highly competitive rates and are suitable for sleeping accommodation, temporary offices, classrooms, pop-up kiosks, kitchen facilities and much more. No matter what your requirements, we have a cabin hire solution for you.


The best part? We can take care of the cabin conversion on your behalf. Whether you want a stainless steel sink fitted or purpose-built furniture, we have a solution to suit. For more information about our range of jackleg cabins to rent, please don’t hesitate to contact us today. We’re also on hand to discuss our steel storage containers, anti-vandal units and toilet blocks, which are all available to hire nationwide.

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