12. 3 Surprising Lessons We Learned In 2021

In this episode we explore the changes in the construction world and the impact they had both globally and personally here at Three Squared. Here's a glimpse at what you'll learn from us in this episode:​

  • We reflect on the 3 most surprising lessons we learned in 2021.

  • The challenge of finding builders, and being patient with timelines.

  • How the pandemic affected the supply chain.

  • The importance of setting realistic expectations when wanting to build.

  • Breck's project highlight of the week: The Suttons Bay Cabin!

> Find the full show notes from today's episode here. > For behind the scenes footage, project updates & more, follow @threesquaredinc on Instagram. >>> Ask us about your project here. To learn more about designing & building with shipping containers, check out these supplemental episodes: 1) Your Quick Start Guide to Container Home Foundations, Insulation & Roofing. 2) Cargo Architecture 101: What You NEED to Know About Building with Shipping Containers

"2021 Taught me that the profession of architecture is just as much about working with people as it is about working with buildings."


-Breck Crandell (Director of Design, TSI)

Show Notes:

  • 0:17 - Introduction into Episode 12.

  • 2:07 - Breck's Project Highlight of the Week: The Suttons Bay Cabin!

  • 6:18 - 3 surprising lessons we learned in 2021.

  • ​6:56 - Lesson #1: Builders Are Hard To Come By.​

  • 7:30 - The nightmare of the real estate market, and why it matters to build what you want right now.

  • 9:00 - Trusting the process...good things take time especially in construction.

  • 9:45 - Challenge of finding builders that are not overcommitted.

  • 11:11 - Expectations of builders.

  • 13:27 - When to start talking to a general contractor.

  • 15:48 - Getting started as early as possible on your project is key because buildings take time.​


  • 19:20 - Lesson #2: Inflation & Material Prices.

  • 19:41 - Seeing the cost of containers normalize. ​

  • 20:37 - How the pandemic affected the supply chain and the impacts we are seeing in building costs.

  • 21:31 - What determines the cost of labor and materials.


  • 25:05 - Lesson #3: Setting Realistic Expectations.

  • 27:42 - Everything to account for when creating your budget.

  • 30:03 - Timeline, budget, scope...deciding which is your top priority for your project.

  • 34:19 - The design process becomes a personal and sometimes emotional experience.


  • 36:20 - Concluding thoughts for Episode 12.

Ask us about your project here!