The answer is not a dumpster, a school bus, or a hipster trailer park (though it's kinda similar to that last one). Adopting a rather cheeky way to avoid paying rentthough what way isn't?a handful of
crazy zany intrepid New Yorkers are resorting to living in RVs in order to avoid paying NYC's uber-expensive rates.
True, the trailer-in-the-city thing has been done before, but remember this Bushwick outfit? It was charging $80/night, and the RV wasn't even your own. Compare that with construction worker Steven Cintron's 200-square-foot mobile homea 1996 Gulf Stream Ultra that he bought for $5,000 because he couldn't find a dog-friendly apartment that he could afford. He parks, appropriately enough, near Park Slope, where he also grew up. He got priced out. Sad.
The Los Angeles Times breaks down the pros and cons:
They don't have to worry about nagging landlords, rent hikes or upstairs neighbors tap-dancing at midnight. But there are obvious trade-offs. Getting electricity takes some effort. Heating during the winter can get costly. Mail may need to be delivered to relatives' places or post office boxes. There's also the issue of how to hook up sewage lines. Then there's the small issue of legality. Though a city spokeswoman "knew of no city laws specifically addressing living in an RV or any prohibition against living in a parked vehicle," there are issues when it comes to, say, laying down cables on the street or sidewalk to juice power from another source. As of last year, the DMV counted 589 RVs registered to New York City residents, but doesn't track when they are used as primary residences or whether they only get used upstate during camping trips.
Another RV user, St. John's University student Rick Hall, parks near the Queens campus and concedes that it's basically the opposite of a babe magnet. Now dudes, on the other hand...
The LA Times did a video interview with 33-year-old Prospect Park-parker "Bryan B." alongside his 1994 Thor Industries Pinnacle. It is equipped with solar panels for electricity, he gets water from fire hydrants, and as for the interiors, they sound decidedly man cave-y, with satellite TV, two 40-inch flat-screens, a PlayStation, and a security camera on the roof. For him, the benefits and cost savings outweigh the obvious downsides. Like waste disposal.
"You can never get evicted, and for one, it has a lot of the comforts at home in a package that can be moved around," Bryan reasons. "The rents are astronomical, so you don't have to worry about your rent going up. Make sure you're legally parked, pay your insurance, and watch out for thieves, and you should be okay."
· Artist Hosts Brooklyn Visitors In Trailer Park For $80/Night [Curbed]
· You Can Buy a Four-Bedroom School Bus in Bushwick For $8K [Curbed]
· This Man Actually Lives In A Dumpster He Tricked Out Himself [Curbed]
· In New York, RVs are one answer to soaring rents [LAT]