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#1 Posted by McGhee (6128 posts) -

So I was driving by my gym today and an idea hit me out of nowhere. Comfortable homeless living.

This is a great idea for those with both a job and a vehicle that want to save a lot of money as quickly as possible.

The gym where I go is super clean. It has bathrooms, showers, two swimming pools, a sauna, weight room, a room with a couple dozen tread mills, stationary bikes, etc. with twenty TVs across the wall. There is even a mini movie theater with stationary bikes in it. The place has free wi-fi, separate lounges for men and women with couches and TVs. Basically, this place has got everything.

So what if you had a vehicle you could sleep in, or even better a van with a mattress in it? See the potential!? I pay only $45 a month for my gym membership. All that shit I listed for that much money. Move out of your apartment and you've got no utility bills, no internet bill, no cable bill (what are you doing with one of those anyway?), no piles of useless junk weighing you down.

Get your ass a cheap van. Get your essential clothing, towels, toothbrush, etc. (Hell, my gym even gives you soap and shampoo in dispensers in the showers.) Get a laptop and you're set.

My gym is not open 24 hrs but others in this chain are. What's even better is that my gym is partnered with hundreds of other gyms all over the country and you have access to all those other gyms as well. You could travel cross-country and instead of paying $45 a night in a hotel, you could pay $45 a month and hit those gyms.

The only reservation with this plan is that you can't be spending so much time there that the people think you're living there, but that's what you have your sweet van for! Drive that bitch to a camp site and spend the night. Then when you want to wash up and download some podcasts hit the gym.

It's such a great idea that I want to try it, even though I own a place and pay no rent.

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#2 Edited by Funkydupe (3613 posts) -

Can I have your stuff?

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#3 Posted by JasonR86 (10178 posts) -

Are you ok McGhee?

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#4 Posted by McGhee (6128 posts) -

@jasonr86 said:

Are you ok McGhee?

I'm fucking fantastic. You telling me you don't see the potential here?! Where's your vision, man!

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#5 Edited by MikkaQ (10296 posts) -

Who wants to hang out with a guy who lives in a van?

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#6 Posted by JasonR86 (10178 posts) -

@mcghee said:

@jasonr86 said:

Are you ok McGhee?

I'm fucking fantastic. You telling me you don't see the potential here?! Where's your vision, man!

Man, I ain't got no vision.

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#7 Edited by Kidavenger (4168 posts) -

I showered at the gym every day for a month while I redid my bathroom at home.

I think living out of a van would get pretty tired after a few months, eating fast food all the time will probably grind your nerves and end up being more expensive than what you end up saving on rent; and van guy will probably have zero luck with the ladies.

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#8 Posted by McGhee (6128 posts) -

I showered at the gym every day for a month while I redid my bathroom at home.

I think living out of a van would get pretty tired after a few months, eating fast food all the time will probably grind your nerves and end up being more expensive than what you end up saving on rent; and van guy will probably have zero luck with the ladies.

Food is something I didn't bring up, but you don't have to eat fast food. There is good shit that you can make from a supermarket, keeping things in a cooler in your van. You can do a lot of things with canned tuna, canned chicken, bread, vegetables and fruit. These things are what I largely lived on when I was traveling in Spain. As I said, I see this as a way to save a lot of money quickly or to travel cheaply, but I bet I could easily do this for a year, no problem.

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#9 Posted by Reisz (1622 posts) -

@mikkaq said:

Who wants to hang out with a guy who lives in a van?

This is your problem right here.

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#10 Posted by McGhee (6128 posts) -

@reisz said:

@mikkaq said:

Who wants to hang out with a guy who lives in a van?

This is your problem right here.

2 things. First, I already have my friends and they won't throw me away because I don't live in a house. Secondly, most people won't even know. Hell, your friends don't even have to know if you care enough to steer them around ever coming to your house. You can make this work with women as well. Get them to take you to their house. It can work.

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#11 Edited by ripelivejam (10906 posts) -

nothing beats the hobo life

stabbin people wit yer hobo knife

:F

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#12 Posted by Aegon (7236 posts) -

Okay, you don't pay rent, but what about water/electricity/maintenance bills or a mortgage?

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#13 Posted by McGhee (6128 posts) -

@aegon said:

Okay, you don't pay rent, but what about water/electricity/maintenance bills or a mortgage?

To clarify, I own a trailer that sits on completely paid for family land. There is no mortgage. All I pay is utilities and yearly taxes (which are next to nothing).

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#14 Edited by Kidavenger (4168 posts) -

I think you are now obligated to do this for science; you must also keep a blog.

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#15 Posted by Hunter5024 (6702 posts) -

Is this a good excuse to post this? I'm going for it.

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#16 Edited by Seppli (11232 posts) -

@mcghee:

Sounds like a sweet plan for a prolonged stateside voyage. Some acqaintances did something quite similar when they did a cross-country roadtrip in the states for a couple of months, but of course they stayed in motels and such.

If there's a suitable nation-wide chain, you'd indeed be able to have all the necessary accommodations for fractions of the price of regular travel arrangements. Though that's definitely more something for a trip, than for daily living - unless your circumstances permit such a thing, and you've got such inclinations.

If you are forced into such circumstances, it's definitely better than living in the streets. If I'd be homeless, I definitely try and be smart about it. Grooming myself would be the most important thing, even before food and shelter. Once you smell, you go to hell.

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#17 Posted by glacialhelmnun (58 posts) -

Former van man here.

This is exactly what I did for 2 months in '08.

Living in a van in the city (Vancouver) kina wears you down. Not luxury living.

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#18 Posted by MikkaQ (10296 posts) -

@mcghee said:

@reisz said:

@mikkaq said:

Who wants to hang out with a guy who lives in a van?

This is your problem right here.

2 things. First, I already have my friends and they won't throw me away because I don't live in a house. Secondly, most people won't even know. Hell, your friends don't even have to know if you care enough to steer them around ever coming to your house. You can make this work with women as well. Get them to take you to their house. It can work.

Sure, as long as you're cool with keeping girlfriends only as long as it takes for them to figure out you live in a van.

But either way I don't see the point because then what's your life all about? Going to work and then sleeping in a van? I'd rather enjoy the money I make. Plus a van will always depreciate in value, owning actual property can make you a profit in the end.

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#19 Edited by TheVeteran13 (1411 posts) -

I was expecting a cardboard castle, color me disappointed.

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#20 Posted by coakroach (2497 posts) -

I can't wait for tomorrows great idea

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#21 Posted by Demoskinos (17325 posts) -

This sounds like a blog series if I ever heard one. Take us on this experimental journey with you.

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#22 Posted by Ravenlight (8057 posts) -

Where you gonna livestream your K-Pop, mang? Cheapo free wifi don't cut that shit.

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#23 Posted by McGhee (6128 posts) -

Where you gonna livestream your K-Pop, mang? Cheapo free wifi don't cut that shit.

First legitimate criticism of the idea I've seen today.

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#24 Edited by Sterling (4115 posts) -

Where would you play video games?

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#25 Posted by TyCobb (2031 posts) -

Where would you play video games?

In the van with handhelds of course.

I like this idea. I would ignore the gym and just park in a strip mall to get wi-fi and shower with a hose hooked up to some random business I am driving by when I feel the need to be cleaner. For a bathroom, I would just buy a bag of kitty litter and a bucket. I could see a bag lasting a few months. The van would be awesome too. Just get an older Chevy Express cargo van, slap a mattress down and if it actually has windows instead of sealed metal, then get some curtains.

Man, this idea is awesome. Thanks McGhee.

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#26 Posted by Sterling (4115 posts) -
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#27 Edited by Unequivocable (240 posts) -

On those days at the office where I'm tired of working for the Man, I totally daydream about doing this! And then I remember that I live in Canada where it's -30 degrees half the year and I would freeze to death in my van. So when that day comes I'm headed south. Who is that large bearded friendly hobo with a Canadian accent? It could very well be me!

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#28 Edited by TooWalrus (13391 posts) -

This is basically my exact plan in case my parents die and I don't have a place to go. Step 1 though is get as far south as possible so you don't freeze to death.

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#29 Posted by McGhee (6128 posts) -

This is basically my exact plan in case my parents die and I don't have a place to go. Step 1 though is get as far south as possible so you don't freeze to death.

That's the best thing about doing it with a van or any other vehicle you are comfortable sleeping in. You can be migratory. Drive to South Florida/California during the winter and everywhere else during the summer. This idea of getting a little outside of society's grasp has a great appeal to me. If my house happened to burn down, I would probably go for it.

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#30 Edited by rachelepithet (1646 posts) -

I did this from Nov. 2010 - May 2011. From 2008 - 2010 I had my first adulthood apartment lease and tried to balance community college and full time, sometimes part time, minimum wage work. I was better off on food stamps and firsts of the month before 18. The rent took all my money. I thought living on my own would increase my rep with "teh ladiez" but it meant nothing in a ghetto ass community college with no social clubs or events to speak of. There might of been another dude with similar interests in the entire city, but I wouldn'tve known where to find him. No friends, no woman, no money, the teachers and staff were highly unprofessional and constantly were throwing assemblies to get kids to sign up for the army. Working on-call hours at my job, which was still in my original hometown before moving out so an hour drive each way, made my grades suffer, hurting my chances of tougher courses at better schools after the associates. I dropped out, didn't renew my lease, spent some time back living with ma, and saved up enough money to try to break away, on a road trip. I'm in my iPad now so ill make more posts tonight with tidbits and funny happenings on the trip.

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#31 Posted by Brendan (9038 posts) -

I've actually thought about this before, except my gym membership at Goodlife is grandfathered from the family plan membership of the gym it used to be. Monthly fee? $10.

The downsides would be much less video games, and never ever getting laid.

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#32 Edited by Winternet (8397 posts) -

I bet that it makes the girls situation pretty difficult. "No, honey, let's go to your place tonight - But, we never go to yours - What? No. We'll go next time. Sure, of course I live in a proper house and not in the back of my van. Who do you think I am? A homeless?".

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#33 Posted by deathstriker666 (1349 posts) -

Living on the road and sleepin' in trailer parks. Luxury livin' in my "van", they call it a RV.

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#34 Posted by Marcsman (3598 posts) -

I couldn't do it.

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#35 Posted by TyCobb (2031 posts) -

I bet that it makes the girls situation pretty difficult. "No, honey, let's go to your place tonight - But, we never go to yours - What? No. We'll go next time. Sure, of course I live in a proper house and not in the back of my van. Who do you think I am? A homeless?".

That's not an issue if you pick up the honeys that are near mobile home parks. The real trick though is to frequent ones that just has a meth lab explosion. That is how you know you will find the honeys that will love the fact you have a mattress in the back.

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#36 Posted by Jimbo (10472 posts) -

The money you save could be spent on hookers. Not really seeing a downside here. Great idea, op.

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#37 Edited by rebgav (1442 posts) -

Replace "gym" with "YMCA" and "van" with "sweet blinged-out fuck truck" and what you have here is a viable blueprint for the gay Hell's Angels.

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#38 Posted by Winternet (8397 posts) -

@tycobb said:

@winternet said:

I bet that it makes the girls situation pretty difficult. "No, honey, let's go to your place tonight - But, we never go to yours - What? No. We'll go next time. Sure, of course I live in a proper house and not in the back of my van. Who do you think I am? A homeless?".

That's not an issue if you pick up the honeys that are near mobile home parks. The real trick though is to frequent ones that just has a meth lab explosion. That is how you know you will find the honeys that will love the fact you have a mattress in the back.

Well, if you're into that type of honeys, then living in a back of a van is definitely the way to go. It's also the way to a whole lot of herpes.

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#39 Posted by Mrsignerman44 (1105 posts) -
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What kind of magical gym is this? Movie theaters, shampoo dispensers? I need to know!

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#40 Edited by Alexander (1760 posts) -

What about cooking food? Live on microwave meals and snacks?