Choosing to be homeless: How I’d live out of my car

24 thoughts on “Choosing to be homeless: How I’d live out of my car”

  1. What a way to get us thinking on a Monday morning! I actually had thoughts of this (clearly – just thoughts as meant in this post) when I took a job about 3 hours from home. They made my schedule so I could be there Tues-Thurs – so I chose to stay over 2 nights a week (this is at a college). I ended up renting a studio apartment but definitely could have stayed in my big office those nights! Great workout facilities – fridge, kitchen, etc – all I could have needed! I thought about a dorm room too – but the apartment was actually cheaper! As far as mail goes – here is a great suggestion from Jeremy over at GoCurryCracker. There is a cost – but this is really interesting for anyone considering traveling.

    1. Thanks for the comment, Vicki. Sounds like you have a pretty nice working arrangement at the moment. Ain’t nothing wrong with 4-day weekends every week! 🙂

      Appreciate the link. Very cool system!

  2. Sounds like you got it all figured out. For the weekends, I’d park near public hunting ground and roll out of bed early to bring in the day’s meal. Something about living out of a car and living off the land seems to tie together for me.

    1. Hey Jolly! It’s true, with a family in tow, it would make that situation very different and probably unworkable – at least in the way that I’d do it if I were by myself.

    1. Yup, completely agree. With a family, this isn’t so easy. But, this was a make believe situation, though, assuming only yourself. 🙂

  3. I have thought about this before and landed at the same conclusion as you. We actually have a gym/shower in our building along with 24/7 access. I could pretend to be a work-Aholic and hang out and watch Netflix in our building.

    We have a fridge and microwave, could get creative and actually get away with a crock pot in here.

  4. I hope the readers get the essence of the point I think you are getting at Steve.

    To look at what is around you and ask yourself
    Do I really need it?
    Can I make do with an alternative way?
    Can I save a few dollars by taking the road less traveled?
    What could doing all this mean for our lifestyle and future?

    Until you start thinking hard about this stuff,it is easy to let it all wash over you and miss the boat ( or car!!) as it were.

    1. Thanks for the comment, Mr. PIE. It is interesting how little we actually “need”, isn’t it? Most of us really can get away with far, far less – us included. 🙂

  5. Provided I was “sans family” I would probably go the camping route. Find a decent campground KOA sort of deal, and pitch a tent. Then you have showers, water, electricity and privacy, and more room than in a car and the rent for a campsite is still probably really cheap.

    In my current situation with a wife, and 3 and 5 yr old and 2 dogs. God help us all… I could still go the camping option, as we have a bigger tent, but man oh man would that make “looking forward” to Monday morning have a totally different feel to it. A spring in the step if you will, hahahaha

    1. I’m actually seriously considering this, but for a road trip across the states to visit the national and state parks. It’s just me, so no big deal, and it would be short term for fun.

      Things I would need:
      Few days of clothes for summer and winter
      Small solar panel to charge batteries and devices
      Cell Phone/Camera
      Tube for floating lakes/pump to inflate
      Basic set of tools for emergency car maintenance (thorough check up before hitting the road)

      I can just shower at the camp grounds and wash clothes at laundromats. Just buy food as I need it, to travel light.

    2. Yup, nothing wrong with taking the camping route! We are at a KOA at the moment with all the amenities, so it’s definitely a step up from bumming around the streets trying to find a place to park. Nothing like camp living to make you look forward to Monday? 😉

  6. I am in a quasi homeless position. I am working overseas for 10 months per year where I get my (modest) housing provided. I am seeking my house in Canada as renting it is proving to be too difficult and is costing me too much from bad tenants. So I will be homeless for two months ever year when I return to Canada (if I return). I am selling everything in the hous but may keep some things of sentimental value for when I set up a home again – whenever that may be. I am possibly considering the car or van option for when I come back for the summer. Who knows?

    1. Interesting situation, Elizabeth. Hopefully those two months, if you return to Canada, aren’t in the winter. I’d be interested in knowing what you end up doing!

    1. Darn tootin’. Cheap, but I agree, it might get old after a while. But then again, you may also get used to living with less. Who knows…and I hope that I never have to find out!

  7. Not an option for families with small children like myself, but as a solo? Sure. Been there, done that.

    Spent a summer in Alaska working on the Exxon Valdez oil cleanup and lived in my station wagon for over 3 months. Worked 14 hour nights, and my 2 main meals were breakfast and dinner provided in the office. Parked my car at the camp ground every morning and showered and slept. Curtains are a must, even if you have some tinting.

    It was an adventure at the time, and earned a ridiculous amount of money with all the overtime. But I wouldn’t want to do it on a long term basis. And I wouldn’t want to do it again.

    1. Wow, interesting story. Curtains, yes – even with a tint, I can see the benefit of curtains. Ridiculous amounts of money, but you wouldn’t do it again. Sometimes, money isn’t everything!

  8. I would never choose to live out of my car if I didn’t have to. My back would kill me for sleep (I’m not sure if my car can be cleverly arranged with a foam mattress) and if I ever go out to drink with my buddies and I drink a little too much and get to home vomiting everywhere.. That would not be pleasant! This is certainly a thought-provoking post, however.

    1. Ha! Thanks Finance Solver. You bring up an excellent point about the vomit. When your “home” is about 15 square feet, every inch counts! 🙂

  9. Here in Rapid there are a bunch of homeless people who I’ve grown close to (not because I’m homeless). Living arrangements might be tricky as cops look for people camping in “hidden” areas. I’d camp out in the woods or sleep/live in a van or RV if I could. Not sure what’s possibl in this place. There is a homeless shelter, but that’s not always a good option. A roof over your head and meal is all you get. Too much noise, and too big of a risk for theft.

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