Paying your first month’s rent can feel like a real accomplishment.

Then the next month’s rent comes along and you still feel really accomplished. The third month’s rent comes after that and you feel good but the accomplishment is starting wear off. With the fourth one you’re starting to notice a pattern, and by the fifth one you’re realizing, “this thing happens every month”. By the sixth one you’ve resigned to the forever recurring payment that is rent. In this economy lots of people struggle to pay living expenses. Rents are too damn high. You’re never really getting enough for what you’re paying for. Not to mention trying to find a house to own beyond renting is a whole other beast.

But why live in an apartment or a house?

People, like the ingenious bunch we are, are turning to different ways of living: alternative living spaces. The spaces they are choosing to live in are convenient for them because they want mobility to travel or because they want to reduce their carbon footprint. Either way, they have made it work for themselves. Check out the videos below to see how these Youtubers and artists live in their car, vans, or tiny houses. Although a lot of these options are not adequate substitutes for the lack of affordable and safe housing that is rising in cities across the U.S., they are a documentation of people who are doing it and how they’re doing it. 

Car Living and Traveling

Pocahontas Honey lives in her car because she likes to travel and enjoys the freedom of moving around without being tethered to a constant stream of bills and rent payment.

 

Solo Sinclair is a Youtuber who has traveled around the US in his car. He always had dreams of traveling since he moved to the US from South Africa but quickly realized that traveling is expen$ive. The solution? Make your getaway van aka your car your home. Check him out on instagram @solo_sinclair

Creative Nomad is taking advantage of car living to make and save money and has lots of tips on how to live in your car!

Van Life

Earth Mama Medicine lives with her partner Matt and their cat Rumi in a cozy black van equipped with a solar panel. She is also a holistic nutritionist as well a yoni health practitioner. Check out her instagram @earthmamamedicine or go to her website earthmamemedicine.com to follow their lifestyle!

Vanessa is a musician who has made a comfortable life for herself in the back of a van. Equipped with solar panels and compost bin, Vanessa’s van is pretty efficient both in terms of energy and in terms of getting around. Check out her instagram @van_lefan 

Bianca of Off the Grid With a Kid is a single mother living in a van and traveling with her child and calls it a “lifecation”! Her energy is infectious and her lifestyle is so inspring! Follow her @offthegridwithakid

Tiny Houses

How much space does the average human being really need? People live in mansions that take up more space than their classrooms or offices ever did. When it comes to buying a house, people want it all. They want a sunroom, a guest room, two other bedrooms, and three bathrooms. Really, we don’t need more than spaces to live, clean, eat, and relax. These people have found everything they need in these tiny homes.

Outside assemblage artist Dominique Moody has a tiny house named The Nomad which is made mostly out of found material. She uses washing machine doors as windows and old wood for her roof.

Jewel Pearson or Ms. GypsySoul on youtube has spent time building a tiny house community for black people when she felt excluded by the mostly white tiny house community. Her tiny house is so nice it was featured on HGTV! 

 

Peter Abundant has a tiny home that is a work in progress. Although this tiny house is not on HGTV, it gives a good example of where you can start. This tiny home is a converted old barn. Follow him @peterabundant 

 

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