Starting up for less than $1k? Or living in a parked parts van? (1 Viewer)

Aug 22, 2011
Westernville, NY
I just got back from hitching the west and am trying to hole up and do some academic work and art now, to have a little space of my own while my partner finishes college. I had been thinking about renting some land and putting up a tipi or a camper on it, but renting land is proving to be a pain in the ass (if ya got tips or know folks in Northampton MA holler). So I started thinking about buying a shitty van, registering it with the campus of my partner's school via an official student, and crashing out in it for part of the week this winter.

I'm gonna line the interior with foam board insulation (polyiso) and may even get an electric space heater that can run from an extension cord. I can shower, do laundry, and cook at one of the grad buildings. Most of the costs associated with all those needs are nothing I'd need to deal with. My real problem is, I currently have $1.75 and no license. And I'd need to make something work by the first of September, when my current spot's lease (friend's) is going to be done.

I've been thinking as well about buying a parts van that rolls and parking it at the college, as long as I got a friend who can tow me occasionally. Probably the jankiest option, but I got an offer right now for a rolling parts van for less than $200. I could probably park that in a friend's backyard and pay a bit for wifi and electric here and there.

Anyone been way down here before in the van world? How did it fare?
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Kim Chee

I deleted myself
Not only is renting a pain in the ass, it is also a mighty fine way to subjugate yourself to another just because they "own" land.

Damn...I myself am paying rent:(

Maybe you can find a work trade or barter situation on CL?

Sorry I don't have helpful rubbertramping experience to offer.


May 26, 2013
Melbourne, FL
Is there a walmart? Scout it out. When I was rubbertramping I'd find some where people had full sized RV's parked for two months or more. Either that or BLM land, but in MA probably not...


Jul 22, 2015
Sacramento, California
I can tell you one thing, most every college will get your new home towed away if you park on campus. Which would probably agitate your financial position much more then needed. If you have a 24 hour store or gym near by tho, you can post up in a van there as long as you are a customer, but you should move parking spaces every day so there is less suspicion.
Here in the west there is a Wal-Mart damn near everywhere, so you could go in and buy a snack(something cheap, like some fruit or a pack of smokes) every evening around dinner time, just to have a receipt to show cops. Then you'd be in the clear. Just a thought, since most campus security has a need to feel powerful, and you living in the parking lot make a convient outlet for that need.
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