Urban Nomads is an alternative living blog and what we mean by alternative living is living in non-traditional housing situations such as RVs boats tents etcetera. What we realized is that a lot of people are stressed out by rent and mortgage payments especially in large cities such as Los Angeles and San Francisco.
For example in Los Angeles, if you want to live in the core of the city you have to be making at least $75,000 and you have to make a deposit of about $6,000 and you have to have pretty much perfect credit and there are thousands of people competing for every apartment desperate for a place to live. They believe that that is the key to their success. They are willing to give up 1/3 to 1/2 of their income to do this. We found ourselves in a similar situation and it got so bad that it reached a breaking point. We will talk about that in the post called “Our Story” so I won’t get into all that right now. The point is that when we reached that breaking point we had an epiphany and the epiphany was that there are living alternatives out there. That we don’t have to rent and we don’t have to have a $500,000 mortgage.
Did you know that in the Los Angeles area the average home sells for half a million dollars? This means that if you were a typical family and you want to own a house in any of the core LA areas that you will have to basically borrow half a million dollars! If you think about this for just a second you will realize that this is totally crazy! Insane! But people willingly do it every day. Half a million dollars for a 2-bedroom house that looks like crap just so I can feel like I have a home. With all the crap going on in LA – 12 million people crammed in such a small space, it’s very tempting to do this. The logic goes that progress is getting that house. People think, “I’ll get my life together, I’ll get my act together and I’ll finally be able to build something.” but to do that you are going to probably need a down payment approaching 20%. At a half million dollars that would be a hundred thousand! This is lunacy! This new economic reality excludes many many people. Many will never be able to come up with those kind of down payments no matter how hard they work. Many will never have the credit necessary or the income necessary and even if they could do it, they are basically entering into an indentured servitude situation.
Luckily, we were forced into a situation where this all became very clear and now I see the lunacy of it. I mean, if you’re a doctor and you have millions of dollars or a lawyer and you have $100,000 or you’re a software engineer and you and your spouse both make $200,000 a year sure, buy a house in LA. But for your average person it would be crazy to rent or buy. I hear that in San Francisco it is even crazier, there are one bedroom apartments going for three thousand plus a month. People are getting jobs at high tech companies but they cannot even afford the rent? Where are they supposed to live?
The Ameican Housing Crisis
There is a housing crisis emergency brewing in America as we speak. Must cities on the west coast have huge homeless populations and have declared homeless emergencies. They’ve opened up city and county property for tent cities and other emergency shelter situations. But honestly I look at all of this now, knowing what I know now and I realize that we don’t have to play that game. There are many viable alternatives to $500,000 mortgages and $3,000 a month rent.
This blog is to find alternatives to that crazy system and to show and explore viable alternatives. We’re going to look at these alternatives with a fresh new eye and what people are doing who live these alteratives. What are the pros? What are the cons? We’re going to look at people and how they are living these alternatives right now. What we have pleasantly discovered and what you are going to discover as you follow this blog is that there are a lot of people out there living these alternatives right now. Many are rent and mortgage free right now. They are having fun and living the good life that we’ve all been taught that we had to be millionaires to live. The truth is you don’t have to be a millionaire to live the so-called good life. You can have it now, you just have to be willing to think out-of-the-box.