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Old 08-15-2016, 09:27 PM
 
433 posts, read 529,923 times
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How hard was it in the summer time? Did you have creative solutions for AC to withstand the hot summers? did you have a 24 hr fitness gym membership for bathing, brushing your teeth and working out to stay fit? was it not all it was cracked up to be, having to find a different place to park every night, where potentially unpredictable things could more likely happen? did you do it alone and did that make you more lonely? were you working at the time and just using the vehicle for mostly sleep and travel?


I'm particularly interested in those whose main incentive for doing this was to save money to reach some grander life objectives.. not those who would have done this even if it cost as much as renting an apartment or taking on a mortgage.. just for the adventure..


I'd like to know if the savings were significant enough for it to be worth it for you and for how long you were able to sustain that way of life...


I have fantasized about it from time to time, thinking it'd be nice to drive up and down the California Coast and enjoy the great beaches and views and ocean air, live without much care in the world, at relatively low cost, and just enjoy life... but then I think about the things I may be glossing over, the everyday things that you must do as part of the routine of living out of your vehicle.. and the physical, emotional and psychological impact that could have..


I've done some numbers and think that, on my current salary, I could save about $15K-20K a year if living out of my vechicle and selling my residence to get rid of my mortgage. That adds up over time, but I wonder if financially it's significant enough to justify the sacrifices of living in a vehicle, vs the appreciation your residence may see over the same time period, and other investments...
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Old 08-16-2016, 07:32 AM
 
Location: Outer Space
1,525 posts, read 3,355,084 times
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I dunno if I would live out of a car. At the very least, a used conversion van/class B motor home or one of those little Toyota RVs. You can pick those up for pretty cheap on CL (compared to rent/mortgage). I don't think I could do it forever, but it would be fine for a year or two.
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Old 08-16-2016, 10:39 AM
 
Location: USA
1,809 posts, read 2,140,481 times
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Rubber Tramp Artist | One woman's stories, rants, and observations


This blog is a woman living in a conversion van. If you scroll through various posts, she lists her monthly expenses. It's not all that cheap to live this way
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Old 08-18-2016, 03:43 PM
 
Location: Gulf Coast
1,036 posts, read 546,064 times
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I fantasize about a small van or something with a mattress, maybe a cooler and a hibachi, and a vacation for a few weeks somewhere out west. Just for the vacation. I'm fairly sure if I really tried it I'd soon find it lacking. I did spend a week "homeless" in a station wagon 24 or so years ago. You'd be really really surprised to find the number of cars out in places at night. What I missed most was the shower and shampoo..
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Old 08-19-2016, 06:52 AM
 
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My Dad did something like that, back in the late 50's. Times were economically tight and Dad was out of work. I remember one day he packed up his truck---the kind with a cab---and headed off to seek work. Helped that he was young, healthy, and used to hardships He grew up on a farm and served in the military, so he could survive without pampering. Also helped it was in Michigan during a mild summer.


He followed construction crews and hired out as a day laborer, slept in his truck at night. Every few days he would get a cheap motel for a shower, etc. He sent home money as he could. I remember sometimes all Mother got was a few dollars, but it kept us going. Then, towards Fall, things picked up and he came back home. Its a way to keep things together, but you have to be young, healthy, andable to survive without luxuries. Helps if you can handle yourself, he got into tangles with more than a few "undesirables" while on the road. He was a Master Gunnery Sergeant in WWII, so guess he had that skill covered.....


I wouldn't recommend such for the softies......
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Old 08-19-2016, 06:57 AM
 
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What about living in an RV?
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Old 08-19-2016, 11:45 AM
 
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To answer the question -- uh….."no."
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Old 08-21-2016, 07:37 AM
 
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I'd have to be pretty desperate to do this or I'd need a specific goal for motivational purposes.

We camp for fun. We started out with a tent and then moved on up to a pop up camper. I have found out some of my limitations in life and camping for a week or two takes me there.

Grooming: I don't care so much if I have a shower or not if I can wash my hair with clean water. The other body parts can be cleaned with a wash cloth and soap. Shaving on the road might be tougher. If you have a short haircut that can be trimmed up every few weeks, you have a better chance of 'easily' being presentable.

Food: Cooking for one is probably easier than cooking for a family, but probably less easy than cooking for two where someone can share the chores. You have to rely on yourself. I prefer to have fresher fruits and vegetables so you have to be in contact with a store every few days. That may add up in gasoline costs for driving to get there. It's harder to eat healthy when you don't have a good way of storing and cooking that food.

I'd invest in a small generator. A generator could be used to power a small microwave, a refrigerator, computer, portable heater or air conditioner.

You'd have options for cooking such as a small stove, grill, bon fire or small microwave. We have a small aluminum oven that goes over the camp stove. It cooks canned biscuits, chicken strips and purchased cookie dough ok, but isn't really meant for high quality cooking.

I'd look at location options. Some places you have to pay. Other places you can stay for free. Sometimes you still need electrical hookups.

In general, I have some stuff I simply want regardless of need. I'm not necessarily a high maintenance person, but I have things like photo albums and pictures that wouldn't work well on the road. No way would I ditch those. What are you willing to get rid of? Not sure of your age, but I started out with very little that needed to be kept. If I had continued that lifestyle and not collected things, it might not bother me. Now that I've gone down a certain path, it would be harder for me to go back to minimal possessions.

If this is something you really want to do, I'd try it as a vacation at first and go to a local park and camp out to see how well it fits into what you need in life.
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Old 08-21-2016, 08:01 AM
 
Location: Texas Hill Country
8,857 posts, read 4,826,319 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaryleeII View Post
My Dad did something like that, back in the late 50's. Times were economically tight and Dad was out of work. I remember one day he packed up his truck---the kind with a cab---and headed off to seek work. Helped that he was young, healthy, and used to hardships He grew up on a farm and served in the military, so he could survive without pampering. Also helped it was in Michigan during a mild summer.


He followed construction crews and hired out as a day laborer, slept in his truck at night. Every few days he would get a cheap motel for a shower, etc. He sent home money as he could. I remember sometimes all Mother got was a few dollars, but it kept us going. Then, towards Fall, things picked up and he came back home. Its a way to keep things together, but you have to be young, healthy, andable to survive without luxuries. Helps if you can handle yourself, he got into tangles with more than a few "undesirables" while on the road. He was a Master Gunnery Sergeant in WWII, so guess he had that skill covered.....


I wouldn't recommend such for the softies......
This about says it.

I lived on ships for about a year and a half. While not in the thread's topic, that kind of living is best done when one is young or at least, a hardened military person. Ie, I knew an engineering warrant who in 20 years of service, only had spent 8 months on shore duty. Lived on the ships, sent his money home to his family.

Now to the thread at a hand.....errrr, sort of. Sort of in that I've thought about it a few times, sort of in that I have plenty of Carny friends who live like that, and sort of that I have traveled like that.

While somethings are obvious to what one needs, I'd say having some kind of "elevation" to be able to pull on one's "lowers" is an item that is needed but is often forgotten. Getting dressed and undressed lying on one's back tends to get old real quick.
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Old 08-21-2016, 07:50 PM
 
14 posts, read 9,275 times
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I currently live in a 32 foot long converted school bus and have since 2010. I work a 40 hour + full time job and save approximately 60% of my net income. All of my bills and services, have been paid in advance for several years now, therefore, creating the odd situation of my bills actually owing me money in the thousands of dollars in pre-payments, should I sever an arrangement with them. I decided to alleviate the cyclic-monthly stresses that come with paying monthly bills by paying all my bills, once a year, for 18 months in advance. I have a 18 month cash back-up that is Equal to 18 months worth of daily-spending habits. I let my employer know my financial situation and unlike all thier other employees, mal-treatment by them towards me will not be tolerated because I'm in a position to quit or be fired or take a leave of absence on or at any moments notice without having to suffer stress or any impact from such a departure what so ever for a minimum of 24 to 36 months from that date, without even so much as a dip in lifestyle, and they tread lightly, around me, but I don't abuse my advantage or position ever, don't need to. My bus home is bought and paid for, as are my Toyota 4x4 truck and my Honda Odyssey mini-van. I do not ever become emotionally ensnarled or entangled with anyone and have no intentions of such, for any reason(s). I was Born alone, and will Happily die alone...we all do... like it or not. So why bother? I socialize only thru direct associations and contacts at work or at the gym. I power all my lighting and cell phone(s)and computers, security cameras, etc. on a collection of scrap 12 volt car batteries, that are recharged constantly from my roof top solar panels and its 12 volt recharger system. I use my employer as the one of many toilet facilities, along with the "open 24 hour a day shopping facilities that sell everything-anywhere at all times. My paid in advance membership to my 24 hour gym facility, offers me a steamroom, sauna, indoor pool and whirlpool, a 1/4 mile indoor track, treadmills, weightlifting machines, and most important,! Private roomed-Endless hot shower facilities....ahhhhhh....and with 6 different locations in my city, hardly makes for a tough life. I live 75 feet away from my place of employment and several 100 yards away from 4 shopping centers and 1 very large upscale mall and 2 parks. Now, Driving: The hours of life the average American loses weekly-monthly-yearly-...over a lifetime basis, sitting behind a steering wheel, driving to and from work, doesn't happen to me, nor do any of the high expense$ associated with the fuel,wear,tear, or maintenance concerning my vehicles ever occur, instead the money go's to my bank accounts and investments and 401k. Because of the convenience and portability of my bus house, I am (by default), the go to guy when and if anyone should need to call out sick or take vacation or if theres difficulty finding someone to cover an all day shift or a tight schedule. I always say yes, and I have never been late or absent or called out sick...Never... I am the after hours eyes and ears for my employer. I have all security codes and clearances and all emergency #'s to my employers business, as well as all the surrounding businesses alike. I have bailed fellow employees out of jail, as well as accompanied fellow employees to the emergency room after hours to avail them to me because they hadn't family who cared (that was truly...sad, hurtful and depressing...)This situation is afforded to me because of the rather risky and unique lifestyle choices I made some 20 years ago when I was homeless and living out of a inner-city garage before being made completely shelterless by the city's zoning department thru its " But.. its not pretty---committee " I now, live in a rather large zoning-department proof-vehicle rather than pretending the struggle of paying the unnecessary expensive tradition housing cost and all the Vagas like unstable stresses that it entails. The unmatchable conveniences and offerings that I can provide to those who know me, is unlike anything, anyone else in the company can offer, but yet these things are still highly needed and appreciated at zero cost to the company. They look after and protect me and I, vice-versa. I am currently living in one of the most expensive-trendy areas of the United States and enjoy this local on equal par with those who pay dearly to live where I live. So can you live in a car ? I don't know...nor would I try...But a bus ?... Undoubtedly !

Last edited by O-merrimac; 08-21-2016 at 08:29 PM..
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