I used to be a traveler back in 1993 traveling all around England and Scotland with a convoy of new age traveler, all of us sleeping in old ambulances, army trucks, vans, box vans etc. we even had a fire engine with us. Then the government jumped all over us a banned us living together and introduced laws to disband us. It was the most fun time in my life and met great characters I can never forget. I’m might leave my flat and live in my 16′ cabin cruiser on the River Thames and may even buy a van in the future. I plan to live in my vehicles in England in the summer and save up and in October to to Kerala in southern India and spend the winter out there cheap and come back to England in April and do it all over again. Saving up for a river side retirement home in Kerala. I am forty this January so I have around 25 years to get the money together. Good luck and god bless to all those great people here living alternative homesteads. May you be blessed with what you need. Rex.
Living in a car has to be considered a short term solution. There is a lot of false economy about living in a car. You don't want to fork out for something like gym membership just to have showers, that money could be better spent on food or saving for a rental deposit. You don't want to be forking out for ice for a cooler every week. You also may not want to be forking out for wireless Internet when you can use the Internet at libraries for free. You don't want to get into traps that increase your cost of living but deliver no returned increase in quality of life or increased income. Having said that, you must wash, if you don't wash enough you are going to get smelly and people will not want to associate with you. You will become a classic stereotypical homeless person who people will treat like a pariah, they won't want anything to do with you. Similarly, access to the Internet is nice, so paying for Wifi can have benefits, especially if you are living on the road long term.

I think this is smart and awesome – too bad that you’ve experienced people being critical of you. It’s wonderful when people are truly willing to sacrifice and think outside the box to improve their situation and change their lives. I think one of the best parts of an experience like this is it teaches you how adaptable you are. So many people don’t change their lives because they can’t imagine adapting to anything different, even though we are all way more adaptable than we think. It’s also sad how accustomed to luxury so many Americans have become, causing them to assume they can’t cut things from their lives. But my experience is that one adjusts to new realities quickly, and if you know that about yourself, you can do radical things to change your life. Good job!


I’ll be embarking on this journey in 2 months when my lease is up. Within 12 months I’ll pay off my jeep, my Harley and tax debts. I’ll also have about 30k cash which will allow me to build my dream home- a tiny house! I have a great job and I can’t wait to start this adventure. I already feel such freedom- and my family is 100% supportive. Btw- I’m a 50 year old woman!
hot hands too expensive to use for staying warm every night. I’ve used them in TX winter and it just wasn’t good enough. Alternative is to use microwaveable hot/cold packs and microwave them at the gas station. Gas stations don’t care if you bring in your own stuff to cook in the microwave. If you have to drive far enough, can put stones or soup cans on your engine block then put those in the sleeping bag. Cooking on the engine block is called “carbeque” and you’d put the soup cans or stones on the same spot that’s optimal for cooking on. That will only work if you have to drive far enough though, it takes as much time as braising to cook or heat things. the native americans buried heated stones underneath them to stay warm at night.
The vehicle I live out of during the colder months when the camp goes through it’s seasonal weather anomalies is a 2001 GMC cube van. It has a ten foot fiberglass box with a counter and a bench. I put my folding cot in the middle and sleep comfortably. My useful necessities are in plastic boxes, I cook at parks, I sleep in a double sleeping bag, have a sawdust bucket for a toilet, a cooler for food . I get ice frozen at a fridge in a local college I attend, and take showers at friends homes. It’s a tough life and sometimes you have to be patient about many challenges but it is a good way to keep expenses low or not have to work as many hours. I was able to pay my land off in eight years. Sometimes I wish I had a house but then remember the stress I was under always having to get the mortgage money up. Someday I will build my little cabin, have already experimented building natural buildings like small domes, underground root cellars, greenhouses. Now the financial stress has been reduced . I don’t get SSI or other income, but because of this lifestyle I can work less than part time while going to school full-time. My life without stress from the monetary needs is more stable and relaxed. If well-planned out, it could almost be satisfying, unlike other lifestyles. And I am growing an edible perrenniel garden at the camp, picking my own apples, plums, hazelnuts, vegetables, every year. It’s been a rugged lifestyle but it shows what you are made of. (BTW, I’m a woman in my late fifties, it has kept me very fit. I can outwalk, out hike, out roller blade people half my age).
It is obvious that some people…MEN AND WOMEN don’t get it… it is a predatory system and the only way you can save any money is by swimming against the current….but these suckers would rather be forever broke…. they want to keep up appearances even though they don’t own and will never own the expensive houses and cars that they claim to ‘own’…they are trapped in a silk web of predatory leases, mortgages and rent payments.
Other than buying a house, new car purchases are some of the largest single transactions most people do on their own. Unfortunately, they are also some of the deals that are most often not made in the buyer's best interest. Before buying a new car, start by learning about the 5 Biggest Mistakes to Avoid When Buying a Car. Once you've familiarized yourself with those common car-buying mistakes, check out these opportunities to save some money on the purchase:
You’ll quickly be able to tell where people can park overnight, since a bunch of other cars will also be there. Neighborhoods filled with apartments are a good option because most residence have to park on the street anyway. But make sure you don’t need a permit to park overnight there, or else you could end up being towed while you’re still in the van…not fun.
Let’s face it, we’ve all romanticized about life on the open road. Whether you’re an avid Kerouac reader, traveling surfer searching for the perfect wave, or simply looking for a life with a little less contemporary responsibility and a little more contemplation, living out of our cars is something we as a culture associate with adventure – provided of course that this is a lifestyle of choice, not forced into out of necessity.
After college I lived in my van for a year — partly due to finances but mostly to step back and get some perspective. Roamed the country. One of the best things I ever did. It’s just as easy to break into an apartment or house as it is a car, so the ‘safety’ issue is something of a red herring. Bravo for questioning the ‘received wisdom of society’ that you have to live a certain way (and spend a certain minimum amount). Our options are largely bounded by our imaginations.

Lots of people say they are CHRIST ian and are not. lots and lots and lots. good and evil people. It is not a fact that she is a CHRISTian. you certainly don’t know either. Do not be hateful of people living in that situation or on less because CHRIST and the APOSTLES lived on less and were hated. I don’t know what she is or what you are. you sure assume that you know me and her also.
As far as times getting worse. A little worse yes, as far as crime goes that’s up. The ARM loans destroyed our economy. When the real estate bubble exploded, the mortgage rates broke record highs. A lot of folks were paying a high mortgage on a house of less value. But the ones with the ARMs really got f..ked. They should have stuck with a fixed mortgage rate. Their loans jumped from some families paying $200 per month up to $1,500 per month. The only way for the folks with the ARMs to save their homes was to completely eliminate all other expenses and just focus on their mortgages. No more movies, restaurants, bowling, vacations, new cars, etc. All these economic activities on the side were put on hold. NOT GOOD! So the car dealerships, etc. had to lay employees off because no money was coming in.
Step 1- Get a set up that you like. One of the main purposes of living in your car is to save money, so don’t go buy a new Sprinter van. Find a way to make it work with what you’ve got. So you have a small car? Can you take out the back seats or open the trunk up to the front? Problem solved. If you have a truck, then get a camper cover so you can live out of the back. If you have a SUV (like me) just fold the backseats forward.
Sometimes you come to rely on a place, and it really is not yours – you don’t own it, but you come to rely on it. And you can get attitudes yourself against people, that is the public. and that can get you into trouble: have an attitude with the public and someone will call the cops on you or worse, complain to the management or owners, who then call the cops and ask you to leave and you are pissed off already. Try not to agitate with the public or the people who notice you, whoever they are, customers or workers. If you feel that agitation coming on, leave ASAP and stay away for a few days.
Try to find an apartment manager job if you have good people skills and some simple maintenance experience.  The local Apartment Association may offer training so you can get that job.  Once you’re in, you’re in for life.  They like peeps that have experience, so this is the route in.  Much easier if you’re a couple.  Mini-storage management is even better.  Usually small buildings only trade an apartment and light housekeeping duties for your time.  You will need to work part-time to pay the bills.
I think this is smart and awesome – too bad that you’ve experienced people being critical of you. It’s wonderful when people are truly willing to sacrifice and think outside the box to improve their situation and change their lives. I think one of the best parts of an experience like this is it teaches you how adaptable you are. So many people don’t change their lives because they can’t imagine adapting to anything different, even though we are all way more adaptable than we think. It’s also sad how accustomed to luxury so many Americans have become, causing them to assume they can’t cut things from their lives. But my experience is that one adjusts to new realities quickly, and if you know that about yourself, you can do radical things to change your life. Good job!
Those survival blankets? the ones that look like aluminium foil? they are good. It takes a lot to rip them, they are cheap and take up hardly any room in a pack. If you are in a tent or a hammock wrap yourself in one of those emergency blankets and then get into your sleeping bag. Socks, hat, gloves. If you choose a hammock, get one without a space bar and made of parachute nylon which folds up small, Ticket to the Moon makes a good one, buy a double size and sleep in it diagonally, that way your body will be flat and not like a banana. Hennessey is good too. Maybe tape another foil blanket to the surface of your hammock underneath. If you put the foil between hammock and sleeping bag it gets all scrunched up. good luck. If your pool showers have cubicles you can shave and clean teeth in the shower where no one will see.
Power Inverter: This is a device you can plug into your cigarette lighter and charge your laptop, cell phone, or any other electronic device as long it is a small enough wattage. It costs about $20 at many stores. Be careful what you charge. Some things will kill the battery if you charge it too long. Try to charge things while driving when possible because it doesn’t use the battery. The one I had had was 100 watts, which means anything you charge has to generally generate less electricity than that.
actually it is possible, they are designed only to be turned on when their is pressure applied kind of like a switch you turn on and off. i’ve researched on them bc they are the only thing reasonable when you have an open space, i do not remember what name they’re under but check amazon.com you will find em their, as well if you are looking for old batteries be careful unless you can put them in the back of your truck due to charging chemicals. I also remember that you can usually find them at auto wreckers for rather cheap and also at the auto wreckers you can also find all sorts of wires that you will find lot cheaper than the usual store, for the reason as they just want the stuff sold, another place you can find great deals is 2nd hand stores such as salvation army and Value Village. I spoke with my gf and she does not agree with me moving into my SUV, but since she is not living with me i kinda feel like i have to since it’s just me, why spend round a grand on living in someone else home when i really dont mind living in my truck??? i just remember when i was 13 and lived on the streets the “freedome feeling” that anything was possible. so till March 1st getting my Expedition camping ready with 200 amp alternator,200 amp battery isolator with 4 1000cca agm batteries. with a 12k debt sitting on interest of 39.9% i’m finding it hard to breath. if i come across anything that may be useful for this site, i’ll keep posting maybe it’ll be able to help someone and yes everything that i have been posting is true, i will be using the same stuff in my truck that i will be posting on here. take care and be safe……..
I live in my car i have a toyota paseo and frankly im loving it had only planned to do so for a few months and now its almost a year i pass out on the drivers seat take martial art and work full time of course using my brothers gym to 24hour fitness sure its doable with a little help. Defenetly mad maxing my car now because of it lol though my racer mentality keeps me to pack light have one luggage in the trunk but those really large flat ones that fold like a briefcase never been asked by police if i was living in car. As for what is vital is iphone and cigarette lighter to power small electronics but frankly i pack light keep busy and lounge at cemetary or friends house from time to time as time goes on one learns the tricks of the trade only have 2 locations i know i wont get rolled up on. My work and a small residential parking lot next to offices by friends hous. i feel like the road warrior……
Drink in moderation. Excessive alcohol use is the second most common cause of cirrhosis, after hepatitis C, and a risk factor for alcoholic hepatitis (liver inflam­ma­tion and cell destruction) and fatty liver, or steatosis. Not everyone who drinks to excess develops liver disease, but limiting drinks to one per day will reduce your risk of alcohol-­related liver disease.
Funny story: After two-week dance festival in the Sierras, a couple of us decided to hang out. Four cars drew up to a open area in the woods…and everyone had their own setup & routine. Pros at the sleeping in cars/vans. It was hilarious. So different from the stay-in-motel/hotel crowd. At the time, I think I was the only homeless one. The rest all had apartments/houses.
First thing is to loose the back seat and build a real bed out 2x4s, plywood and get some foam from a fabric store then cover it with a cheep sleeping bag from a discount store, do not towel up your windows dark tint is enough always be ready to roll, I learned to sleep with just a baseball cap over my eyes, I want to see what the dog is growling about. best secret of all is TRUCK STOPS, some have lounges where you can hangout and watch tv and wash your clothes, internet, but i’m warning you to not go in the back with the semis stay in front with the cars, semi drivers run on a time frame 14hrs. on 10 off. they don`t just want to stop they have to stop. don`t be the guy in the only possible space, you will find yourself parked in unable to leave. respect that and nobody will bother you, I`ve even grilled out in the packing lot, I also traveled with my doberman so security wasn’t an issue. and I wasn’t lonely. Showers in truck stops cost about ten bucks, so really good to join a gym,
It is best to arrive late in the day, park, and then remain silent and quiet. If you are parked in a residential street, don't do anything to alert the people there that you are living in you car. Mostly, don't do anything to annoy the residents like make a lot of noise. In places away from people, you can of course use your lights, play music but don't over do it. If you can get permission to park some where, then you should feel free to make reasonable noise and show reasonable lighting if you need to. I've heard of some planned parking arrangements in the US now as the number of people living in cars has risen due to the financial crisis and foreclosures.

Wow. I’ve been feeling sort of down on myself and low and lonely lately and your story made me feel very grateful that I have a roof over my head. I hope that you’ll be able to afford to get into a rented room soon. I know there are furnished rooms for rent in my mid-sized New England city for $100 per week. I’ll be praying for you and hope things get more stable for you soon.

What else can you add to make your car feel like home? While you probably don’t want to keep every piece of memorabilia in your car with you, one or two things won’t hurt. I have a t-shirt quilt that I made myself and my childhood teddy bear that I keep in my car. I have a dashboard collection of all the cards, notes, and photos people have given me.
I’m female. Much harder to be homeless . My brother on parole threw me out because he wanted my elderly mom to himself and her check. And her house. No his parole officer did nothing. ..soo Walmart parking lots to sleep. . I wear baggy clothes since I’m an extremely attractive female. I have no one , no good family, zilch. Its summer and my truck is hot. I stay cool by going to mall to sit. I have income., But no one would rent to me so it seemed. I look too Haggard and tired, maybe it shows it’s hard. Emotional and tired. I’m sitting here looking for rooms to rent, been homeless now a month. I’m about to go to hospital for exhaustion.
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