‘Van homes’ aren’t romantic – they are proof of our horrifying housing crisis | MotorhomeFun | The Motorhome Support and Social Network

‘Van homes’ aren’t romantic – they are proof of our horrifying housing crisis

Coolcats

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Jan 24, 2019
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If you are choosing to live in a Van full time out of choice that is one thing however here is a different view:

Finally, an ingenious solution to a housing crisis that is sapping the quality of life of an entire generation: the humble van. More than 21,000 Britons applied to the DVLA in the past year – a rise of almost two-thirds in two years – to convert their van into a home. These can be furnished to include a shower, a bed, cooking facilities and a seating area. Apparently, some van homes even have hot tubs. With your cosy cubby-hole on wheels, you can escape the tyranny of a private rental sector defined by rip-off rents and a lack of security and roam the British landscape, unshackled, free!Stop this – stop this immediately. This is yet another attempt to glamorise a national scandal, to dress up desperation at the inability of a wealthy society to provide one of the most basic needs of its citizens as kooky and fun. Will historians look back at this as a wacky, innovative trend, or will they write: “In 2019, citizens of the country with the sixth-biggest economy were forced to transform vehicles into places to live because of the lack of affordable housing”?

There is at least two MoHo's locally to me where the occupants are full time, these are old vans and they move around never staying more then two nights at any one spot but do re-circle between several of their locations, never leaving any mess, but it cannot be ideal if you are forced to live in a MoHo because of financial circumstance.
 
Aug 5, 2018
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I'm 45 and live at home and the only way I can see me being able to afford a "house" is by building one on wheels...
Gone are the days of being associated with travellers just because you live in a van.
Youtube is awash with "HASHTAG VAN-LIFERS / VANLIFE" so there is more of an attraction there now I think, being a bit more free than the ball and chain of a mortgage.
This must ring so true for some people I think....

"Normal is getting dressed in clothes that you buy for work, driving through traffic in a car that you are still paying for, in order to get to a job that you need so you can pay for the clothes, car and the house that you leave empty all day in order to afford to live in it.

I don't ever want to be "Normal"
 

vwalan

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Sep 23, 2008
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quite normal down here in cornwall and devon . you work holiday camps etc in summer then take off in winter to spain or africa etc .
been going on for years my parents did it when i was a kid . i did it abit as a teenager . .
then later did it as i got older , drove trucks in the summer then off we go about this time of the year.
some friends have carried on doing it from being teenagers to being retired . they never had houses at all.
my kids always knew as they grew up i would be traveling when they were older.
mind thousands down here live in caravans in the corner of fields etc . lots do through out the uk as well.

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May 23, 2012
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Think you’re right about the amount living in caravan. Once out in to rural areas or some less attractive industrial areas there are caravans tucked up with people living and working a normal life.
 
Feb 22, 2008
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At the moment we are spending a few days on a nice little site in Suffolk and at a glance there are several what appears to be full timers in various vans from caravans to a RVs.
 

vwalan

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i have put these on before but they were took in the very early 60,s about 62 .i,m on the step with my mum . my gran is sat outside with my younger brother.
we went all over europe ,turkey ,greece in that old bus .
a year or so later we came down to cornwall and lived in a house .
mind we had lived in a house in warmsworth . near doncaster .
my dad always said he wished he was a gypsey and lived in a pony and trap. but he wanted a white and black horse as everyone had black and white ones .
i can hear him almost every day with his funny/daft remarks .
mind he died 10years ago.
when i grow up i might be a gypsey as well.

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Oct 12, 2009
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The reference in the OP's post to DVLA reporting that they had 22,000 applications 'to convert vans into homes' is nonsense as DVLA only know the vans are being converted to 'motor caravans', but do not know what the owners will use them for, e.g. touring like most of us, so not necessarily living as their 'home'.
 

Northernraider

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Jul 30, 2017
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While I agree there are some who have no choice but to live in Van's I'd say the majority are actually choosing to do it
Like myself, I could afford to buy a property again or rent one if I chose , but van life is actually quite good , it's not only cheaper but has other benefits also.

Those applications to dvla dont reflect anything other than the fact many choose to convert a van to a camper than pay often ott prices for one thats already a camper or motorhome

When you consider how recent a van you can get and depending on skillset can convert one pretty cheap

When the cheapest motorhome is probably around 5 or 6k and that's likely to be either 25 year old or falling to bits.

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Jan 2, 2017
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I agree it's not all roses
I've worked in the care industry most of my life and could no longer manage to work the 70 HR week needed to pay the rents in the place I've lived for 30 years and they still increase
Nobody wants affordable housing in their back yard, but they sure as hell want people to do the menial work that they don't want to
I'm on my own, been in the van for three years, does make you wonder what will happen in the future
 
Aug 26, 2008
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A nomadic lifestyle frees you from the problems of neighbours, and gives you a choice of environment. Once you have sorted out a van, there isn't any hardship. The only real problem is social perception of the new breed of digital nomads.
In our small town I could point out about 2 old MHs, 3 self-build van conversions, and an old touring caravan within half a mile of my house, usually on or close to the industrial estate. All appear to be lived in. They don't appear to stay in the same place for more than a few days and they don't cluster together. They don't seem to bother anybody and don't leave litter. So far I haven't spotted any complaints in the letters page of the local free paper.

This alternative lifestyle seems to be tolerated round here, at least for now; but that could change if the numbers involved become significant so it spreads further into residential areas especially if there are clusters of the very tatty old ones that never move, such as on some Bristol streets.
 
Jul 3, 2018
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I love my motor home and canal boat nice easy size to keep clean and makes sure you only get yourself whats necessary and stops my wife covering every wall with pictures (y)
 

Badknee

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Aug 25, 2014
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These pictures are from the area surrounding Silicon Valley in the USA. House prices and rents spiralling out of control have made it impossible for many to even rent with less than a six figure income.


02FFB235-FDDF-4554-963D-5EBC8006BA61.jpegBD7050F6-3E82-4768-99EA-FE820EEEB461.jpeg

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Jun 30, 2013
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Not so much a shortage of housing ( although I agree there are too few) but prices of houses are artificially too high for people to buy them, especially youngsters on stupid zero hours contracts.

Once houses are seen as homes and not investments to make huge amounts of money, then maybe more people will be able to afford them.

The only options left for people now, are renting homes or buying boats or camper vans to live in or converting their own.
 

Badknee

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Google,Apple and Facebook have pledged billions of dollars to build low cost housing and Apple have plans for a workers campus.
Nothing has yet happened and living in “vans” continues.
 

Badknee

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Not so much a shortage of housing ( although I agree there are too few) but prices of houses are artificially too high for people to buy them, especially youngsters on stupid zero hours contracts.

Once houses are seen as homes and not investments to make huge amounts of money, then maybe more people will be able to afford them.

The only options left for people now, are renting homes or buying boats or camper vans to live in or converting their own.
This is very true, locals in “must go to” places can’t afford to live there. Out of towners arrive on a Friday with a box of groceries bought elsewhere and leave on Sunday. Local shops shut, the pub is only open on Friday and Saturday and the rest of the week the place is a ghost town.

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Jun 30, 2013
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I suppose the next step for the tories is to start romanticising food banks and homeless shelters......
 
May 23, 2012
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Am not saying any government is better than another, but I personally know of 3 people who was living in motorhome and caravan when Blair was in charge. I know all 3 was down to divorce and not enough funds to start buying.

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Mar 1, 2012
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We live in our van full time because we want to. We tryed to go back to our house that we rent out . But did not like it . There is a sense of freedom that you get when in the van and some lovely £10pn sites around we go to . I will agree housing is over the top price wise. John n LINDA
 

PhilG

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Mar 8, 2016
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you tube has glamourised this way of living ' i am 23 and mortgage free' ... no mate you are living in an LDV Convoy at the bottom of your parents garden.

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Oct 12, 2009
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We live in our van full time because we want to. We tryed to go back to our house that we rent out . But did not like it . There is a sense of freedom that you get when in the van and some lovely £10pn sites around we go to . I will agree housing is over the top price wise. John n LINDA
But you kept a house, with which I agree.

It gives you income now and some sort of bolt hole if you need it, with NHS entitlement if needed.

I always advise against selling up. But I have considered selling up myself to move my tax base to Andorra. But only possible with substantial capital. Meanwhile, like you, I keep the house in UK and just take the rent.

Geoff
 
Feb 9, 2008
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All this has to be put into perspective. Where we live there are a lot of empty houses and flats owned by the local housing partnership, they built too many and there is no demand. House prices are low as well. Mate of mine is offering a two bed flat in good condition, on the market at £39,950. Not a single viewing.
 

Jim

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with NHS entitlement if needed.
You don't need a bricks and mortar address to get NHS treatment. In fact, if you live in a van, you can present at the best most suitable doctors/hospital for your ailment. That is one of the big benefits of full-timing (y)

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