Best Affordable Housing Options for Cheap Living




cheap housing options

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If you are seeking a pathway for living on your own, cheap housing options are something you should consider.

Housing is the most expensive cost when it comes to living an independent lifestyle.  By focusing on cheap housing options, you can reduce your housing costs drastically.

Maybe you have an income share agreement, and you are paying on that. Affordable housing will ensure you have enough money to keep current on your payment.

how to live on your own with cheaper housing options

The cheapest way to live on your own includes eliminating or significantly reducing your housing costs.  Focusing on cheaper housing options will allow you to save less for a down payment or have a lower monthly housing payment.

In addition, if you can locate free housing options, you can eliminate your housing cost all together.  This allows you to potentially move out of your parents basement and live on your own faster than if you were to save up for a larger down payment for a mortgage on a house. There are so many benefits of living below your means through cheap housing.

This article will detail the best cheap housing options available so living on your own can become a reality.

If you are looking for how to live on your own cheaply but are currently living with family, hope is not lost.

Unconventional Alternative Cheap Housing Options

The key to living on your own is to focus on cheap housing options.

unconventional alternative housing ideas

There are ways for you to live on your own with cheap alternative housing options and ideas.

These cheap housing ideas don’t involve paying off your mortgage early either.

I have noted some of those below:

Live-in Private Estate Manager/Private Estate Sitter

The cheapest housing option is to not have any housing expenses at all.

If you become fortunate enough to land this gig, you might be able to completely eliminate your housing costs by becoming a Live-in Private Estate Manager.

Live-in Private Estate Managers usually manage the property (or estate) for a client. High net worth individuals are usually busy traveling, out of town for periods of time, or away from their estates for other reasons.

These estates however, can be complex and involve a lot of details and moving parts to keep them operating. This may include supervising landscape staff, contracting with mechanical companies, and making sure all vehicles are maintained as well.

In addition, sometimes individuals have several homes and need someone to take care of them when the client isn’t able to do so.

There are several service opportunities available in this area.

Most of these estate manager jobs are located in Florida, California, New York, Connecticut and Colorado.

Cooperative Housing

Many people have no clue what a housing cooperative is.  However, it is one of the best cheap housing options available. This is a great option if you are looking to live on your own as soon as possible.

The one thing about cooperative housing is that it’s extremely rare.  As a matter of fact, less than 1% of housing units available in the country represent cooperative housing.

There are ways you can save money moving cross country if there are no cooperatives near you.

However, if you are fortunate enough to live in an area with this type of living, you will make out in a few ways.

First you will be able to live on your own with an extremely cheap monthly payment.

Second, you can also save a tremendous amount of money and I am living proof of that.  In 4 years not only have I been living in this cheap housing option, but I have also saved $80,000 so far.

You can read about my journey living in a housing cooperative and how I am saving over $300,000!

A Travel Trailer

Out of all the unconventional cheap housing options available, a travel trailer wouldn’t be considered one to live in full time.

However, a travel trailer is a great alternative cheap housing option to live in. Even if you are trying to buy a house with a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you can live cheaply to save money.

live in a travel trailer to save money

A lot of people will say living in an RV is cheap, but that is not necessarily true.  Travel trailers often cost a fraction of what a used RV costs.

Reasons for this are that RV’s have motors, and need to be maintained.

Additionally, some RVs can cost well over $100,000 which isn’t exactly a cheap housing option.

Travel trailers on the other hand, don’t have a motor to maintain and have less costs for things such as insurance because your not insuring a mechanical motor.  It’s just the trailer.

Both RV’s and travel trailers will depreciate, but you have less financially invested with a travel trailer than you do a 6-figure RV.

That is what makes travel trailers one of the cheapest housing options.

You can find some land somewhere and make all the necessary electrical and water hookups, and you now have a cheap housing option not to mention a beautiful scenery.

If you are fortunate enough to have land in a wooded area or with water and beach access, you can’t go wrong with this alternative housing option.

3-D Printed Homes

You may be wondering what on earth is a 3-D printed home?  Well, it is one of the most unconventional cheap housing options and alternatives available.

How would you like to have a home printed to scale for you to physically live in for under $10,000?

Well, I hope your sitting down because there are engineering companies that undertake this great feat making this a possibility now.

As a matter of fact, the home can also be printed within 48 hours according to Business Insider and their story on 3-D homes.

The printers construct the cement walls and foundational structures of the home.  Once all of the cement has been loaded, the printers start their run of the construction of the house.

The printer starts the run and the printers “print” out cement in a way where they can print walls up to 8 and a half feet tall.

Live-in Nurse

If you have the right credentials, you can also become a live-in nurse as well.  Live-in nurses are available around the clock for their patients that at require care.

Some patients, such as dementia patients for example, require medical care 24/7 and having a live-in nurse is a great arrangement for the nurse and patient.

The patient may not have to pay the nurse as much compensation if the nurse is staying in the residence.  Additionally, the nurse also is receiving a place to live for free or very cheap.

A live-in nurse can save money on housing costs by living in the residence of their patients.

The arrangement all depends on what has been worked out between parties, but it can be a mutually beneficial arrangement for both parties.

Volunteer to be a Lighthouse Keeper

Although more of a short-term cheap housing option, volunteering to take care of a lighthouse is another unconventional housing alternative that free in this case!

Mainly privy to Michigan and Maryland, you can sign up to stay over night in a lighthouse and become a keeper.  There are some duties and responsibilities that go along with becoming a lighthouse keeper.

Usually you have to be available during certain times for people to come and tour the light house.

The trade off for that is that you usually can stay overnight free of charge in the actual lighthouse.  Although some policies and rules will vary by lighthouse, the overall operation is similar between all lighthouses (at least the Michigan ones).

For a list of some lighthouses available check out the National Park Service website for available opportunities.

Multi Unit Property

There are not many cheap housing options that will allow you to take advantage of the real estate market conditions.

Let’s face it a travel trailer depreciates, and a 3-D printed house isn’t really designed to be resold for profit.

Multi unit properties however, is one of the cheap housing options that allows you to live on your own, and also build equity.

When I say multi unit I am talking about a duplex, triplex, or a 4 unit.

Anything over 4 units, requires a commercial mortgage which is completely different than residential mortgages.

Think about buying a multi unit and living in one of the units.  By having tenants pay the majority of the mortgage, you can end up living on your own cheap.  There are also huge tax deductions as well that will help you at tax time.

Additionally, think about becoming a section 8 landlord if you are looking for a way to collect guaranteed income.

There is currently a shortage of rental housing so getting into the rental market as a landlord could yield significant profits.

It’s one of the best cheap housing options for living on your own cheaply.

Related Article:  Best 1031 Exchange Companies Near Me [Guidelines]

Tiny House

We can never forget one of the most loved cheap housing options of all which is the tiny house.

There are two kinds of tiny houses, ones that are built on a trailer with wheels and ones that are built stationary.

If you choose a stationary tiny house, you will need to factor in the cost of the foundation.

However, by going this route, you can make your tiny house as big as you want because you are not limited to the size of the trailer.

There are actually tiny house neighborhoods now that exist.  Tiny homes are cheap housing options that make financial sense.

If you choose to build a tiny house on a trailer, the costs will run about $10,000 for the materials, and $20,000-$40,000 for the labor depending on how elaborate and customized the tiny house is.

While there is no foundation costs when you build a tiny house on a trailer, you may have to consider NHTSA regulations, codes, and laws for travel down the highway that may be necessary.

Whether you choose a tiny house community or one on a trailer, they are both  great alternatives to traditional living and cheap housing options.

Move in With Family

Living with your parents might seem like something you can’t stomach. However, one of the best affordable housing options for cheap living is to move back in with parents to save money.

calculate your rent burden

Calling up mom and dad for a long-term stay can be a great wat to live for virtually free when it comes to cheap alternative housing. This can also allow you to follow other personal goals as well in addition to cheap living.

A Guest House

If you happen to have family that has a guest house, this is a way to live on your own and under a different roof.

There are other options as well for living in a guest house.  My cousin attended UCLA and ended up answering a classified ad for doing some handyman work for an individual in Hollywood.

After he finished the job, they offered him the guest house to live in provided he would help maintain the grounds.

While that luck may not happen for all, you can also rent a guest house.

Property owners do this a lot to help with the expenses of the property and property taxes.

Renting a basic guest house is a lot cheaper than renting an apartment and chances are, it’s going to be a lot better conditions as well.

Sometimes guest houses are located next to gardens or wonderful exquisite backyard pools.

When considering cheap housing options, this option would probably be in one of the best neighborhoods because most guest houses are located on beautiful estates.

If you are ready to move into a guest house today, be sure to check out these best moving hacks to save money on your move.

Container Homes

Another great choice for an alternative cheap housing option would be building a container home.

There are more than 800,000 shipping containers that are used each year to ship goods across the ocean to the United States.

After that journey, they sit idle in shipping yards waiting for their next journey.

For some of those containers, they get purchased to make cheap housing as an alternative housing option.

Building a container home is a lot like building with huge LEGO blocks.

You can build a house as small as 300 square feet to over 5,000 square feet. A lot of municipalities now allow these structures to be built (that wasn’t always the case).

There are also a lot of places where to get free wooden crates for a move which will save you time. The best part why container homes are great cheap housing options, is because they are really efficient and cost far compared to traditional stick-built housing.

If you need appliances, check out how to save money on high end appliances for your container home.

Cheap Housing Alternatives Wrap Up

By following any of these cheap housing options, you will be able to live on your own.

Things such as 3D-print homes and tiny houses offer some of the most unconventional cheapest housing options available for you to get out and start living on your own.

Additionally, there are also ways to eliminate your cost of housing through some of these housing options completely.

Focusing on live-in caretaker services and volunteering as a lighthouse keeper may eliminate your housing costs completely.

Finally, there are many cheap housing options but not many that allow you to build wealth.  Be sure to consider cooperative housing units as a wealth building vehicle.

Not only can you capitalize on the real estate market through these units, but you also will be living on your own in one of the best cheap housing options available.

You can also live in these alternative cheap housing options while you save money for a house fast.

As you can see, there are many cheap housing options available that will get you to living on your own in no time.

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