If you live in an RV, can you still be “homeless”?

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by Deanna Tolliver

What makes an “RV community”? Ten years ago, you might have said meeting fellow RVers, impromptu happy hour get-togethers with the new neighbors, maybe potlucks and outside games. Really, it seems like an RV community evolves anywhere a group of RVers share the same general space and common interests.

These days, an “RV community” is no longer comprised of one group of people. It’s no longer just the new retirees who sell their homes and take off to see America. Or the 50-somethings who take their RV out as often as they can, sometimes for months in the winter. Or even the young family who takes a break from their hectic week by going “camping” at a nearby state park on the weekends.

An RV community can now be:

Homeless RV community in Seattle

–worker “bees” moving to where the jobs are, all around the country
–Millenials living fulltime in their RVs with online jobs
–families who have learned that an RV can be an inexpensive first home
–college students who find RV living cheaper than a dorm or apartment
–retirees who can’t afford a “sticks n’ bricks” home
–homeless people, still on the street, but with a roof over their heads

In the next few weeks, I’ll be taking a little closer look at these diverse groups, all who are technically “RVers.”

This photo (above right) is of an RV community in Seattle: RVs line the street on one side, Starbucks employees park their cars on the other.

The group getting the most press these days is the homeless, which begs the question: If you live in an RV, are you really homeless? If people are living in structures which they regard as their “homes,” then why do we refer to them as “homeless”?

I think the fine line here is crossed when the “RVer” can’t afford to pay for electricity, water or sewer at an RV campground, or doesn’t have the means to dry camp. These are the people paying a few thousand dollars for a motorhome that has seen much better days. It’s cheaper to buy a worn-out Class C than a towable because a trailer requires a vehicle. Besides, a motorhome has a higher “stealth” factor: Cover all the windows and no one knows if you’re “home.”

Homeless RV community in Los Angeles

A battle is being waged in many parts of the U.S. today and the battleground is your neighborhood, or one very like it. The homeless RVers must have places to park. Oftentimes a quiet neighborhood in suburbia is an enticing place. Homeowners in that neighborhood strongly disagree. There are stories of sewage being dumped curbside and garbage accumulating in yards. Often the police are called. If there is a municipal ordinance forbidding RVs on streets, the RVer will be given either a warning or a ticket or both and told to get out of the neighborhood. Many just move a few blocks away until they are told, again, to move on.

Seems straightforward enough. But when there are hundreds, if not thousands, of these homeless RVers, where do they all go? A recent headline in the Los Angeles Times said: “Faced with complaints of filth and blight, L.A. cracks down on overnight RV parking. Now, the homeless are scrambling”. (Click here for the full story.) The 2017 Greater Los Angeles Homeless Count reports 4,545 “campers and RVs” on the streets that serve as makeshift homes.

Seattle has been dealing with this issue since at least 2008, when the city earmarked a $10,000 grant for a program to set up a “safe-lot” program for homeless people living in RVs and cars. The program didn’t start until 2011, and then, only one lot was available, with only ten spots. It still is the only safe-lot, and may be closed in July this year.

The idea was to get the homeless in a safe place and put on a list for affordable housing. Trouble was, only the car and van dwellers seemed interested. The homeless RVers, for the most part, just wanted a safe place to park. A recent headline in The Seattle Times reads: “Seattle still doesn’t know what to do with thousands of people living in vehicles.” RVs can park in industrial areas for up to 72 hours. Then, time to move on and find another place to park.

The Seattle City Council is looking into a proposal to fund more services for the homeless, one that would include RVs. It would cost roughly $1.15 million per year…or almost $12,000 per vehicle in the program.

Like other cities up and down the West Coast, home prices and rents are not affordable for many people. San Diego also has a homeless RVer issue. That city has tackled the problem by operating three safe-lots, with 150 sites each, but RVs are not allowed; only people living in cars, trucks, or vans are given permits to stay, and then, only until they move into affordable housing. The RVers are still on the streets. And a city ordinance bans them from parking on any public street from 2 a.m. to 6 a.m.

A spokesperson for the San Diego program said they don’t allow RVs in their safe-lots because “a different population lives in them, people generally more resistant to leaving their vehicles for housing.”

Don’t think this is only an issue on the West Coast.

In Colorado Springs, Colorado, the RV homeless are called “RV squatters.” Many have tried to take up residence in grocery store parking lots. In Longmont, the homeless in RVs are told to “move along.” So they ask, to where? No answer has been given. (Read the story here.)

Homeless RVers can no longer spend the night in Walmart parking lots in the mid-Willamette Valley, Oregon, with the threat of being towed away if they do.

At a meeting in Missoula, Montana, a Ward 4 Councilman said, “If they are living in an RV, they are one step from probably being homeless. They shouldn’t be (parked) on the street.” To which a homeless RVer replied: “Why don’t you help us find a place to park…?”

Indeed…Why don’t we find them a place to park? An empty mall parking lot. Porta-potties. Maybe a honey wagon once a week. Water hydrants to fill holding tanks. Maybe even a program offering solar panels to keep batteries charged.

I can already hear some comments: “Tell them to get a job!” “Why should I support them? I don’t have enough money either.” 

Many of the RV homeless are families with children. (Click here to read one family’s story.) Some are disabled military veterans. Others have mental disabilities and are not employable.

What do YOU think? Please leave a comment.

##RVT851

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Jay March
3 months ago

There are many people who are full time RV ers I’m in a 25 foot travel trailer since 12/2016 and also full time. I thought traveling would be fun. It might be if you have to wherewithal to do so. I got a job and stay in a membership RV resort campground for 3 weeks a month, one week a month in a mobile home park 12 miles away. It is a low cost lifestyle. I would love to own another home but find at my age 66 it would be difficult to get approved for a mortgage especially since my income is so low.
It was said that in California if you live in an RV the state considers you as homeless. I think 🤔 I’m one step above that as I have a home on wheels. Home is where I park it and I pay rent to stay in the parks. I went from $6,000 a month in expenses to less than $1,150 a month including a car payment insurance gas food laundry 🧺 and storage container rent. Loving the less stress life

blavard
4 months ago

The IRS considers RV’s a second home. You can mortgage one and write off the payments. So they are homes. And like any home, your’s can be declared unlivable if it does not meet codes. One of those tarp covered, dilapidated squalor shacks on wheels with no running water or functioning toilets could be judged the same way a house is, and condemned

Poly
1 year ago

Working sucks, and when you earn less than 3x local average income, you are forced to rent – which is just like burning your cash every month. Every citizen should be allotted home-ownership credits for renting so they don’t feel like they’re just a bunch of working schmucks getting scammed. If a person is unable to work for whatever reason, they should automatically be placed in a government program that houses them and helps them toward employment. Currently, as of 2019, there is no such housing-assistance-with-employment program offered at the federal or state level anywhere in the USA, but many other nations around the world have had these types of programs for decades. USA = Third World

WILLIAM YRIGOYEN
1 year ago

I have a job my dad passed not long ago my mom is disabled and gets SSI the rent is just to high for us to afford i wish we had a home but for now we are just trying to survive. We are not bad people just there isn’t any help when it boils down to it.

Mandee
1 year ago

We’re one of these families. Luckily we live in a part of Oregon where we’ve made a community and we get the help we need to stay warm, and we can park in forest land. But we’re just waiting on housing… thanks for bringing attention to this. We’re not all bad or resistant to housing. Who would want their children cold at night? ?

Poly
1 year ago
Reply to  Mandee

“Housing” sucks, in general, and “low-income housing” sucks horribly, every time. People shouldn’t be forced to choose between living in their vehicle in peaceful, natural surroundings or living in a cramped apartment in a noisy, polluted urban setting. Many who are resistant to housing are really resistant to the low-quality housing being offered (to those who can afford it – it’s still not truly affordable for most who need it). Residential construction standards are getting worse, and “low-income housing” is becoming less affordable, but government leaders seem clueless or like they just don’t care.

Ianto Jones
2 years ago

I’ve typed this before, but – Some of us truly are just poor.
My wife and I worked for decades, before becoming severely disabled (I worked for decades *while* severely disabled, but my condition is progressive).
I have a small pension, and we both earned SSDI by regularly paying in over the course of our careers.

She has MS, and requires a mild climate.

Our apartment raised our rent by triple digits, annually, for seven years (doubling our original rent); this was unsustainable on a fixed income.

We have been very fortunate. We were able to use Craigslist to trade my wheelchair minivan straight -across for a 30yo 23ft Class C (fully maintained, and decent-looking with its fibreglass hull).
It is four feet longer than the minivan.

We were additionally fortunate to find a long-term space in a “mixed” RV park (daily/weekly tourists in front, ‘permanent residents’ in back).

We were lower-middle Class white collar workers.

In two to three years, we will have paid off our medical debts, and be able to upgrade our rig to something from this century.

We endure seeing people on the RV forums refer to undesirable Permanent Residents in their “unsightly” older rigs.

We endure seeing ourselves lumped in with the mentally ill and addicted.

Truth is, if we hadn’t found a park that was willing to overlook our older rig (it’s presentable, and maintained), *we* would be street or Walmart parking while we get this debt cleared (paying 65% of our income to it, done in 2020).

At that point we will be fine, but – the judgment and condescension *hurts*.

There but for a major illness go most of you.

I was never a “deadbeat”. When my mom had a stroke, with no savings, I paid her hospital bills and rent for a few years. On a nonprofit grunt’s salary.

I had my first paid job at nine, my first W-2 job at 14, and worked steadily and well despite several severe handicaps.

When I lost my ability to work, my savings were quickly depleted by my COBRA payments (which were four digits and twice my rent at the time).

All this shortly before the ACA would have allowed me guaranteed coverage, I couldn’t risk a gap due to pre-existing conditions.

And recent medical care/history is required for disability approval.

Finally got caught up with that debt, (during which time I married my amazing wife), and two years later her MS progressed severely (bringing intractable epilepsy to the party as well). Several hospital stays and a severe stroke later, we again had heavy debt.

After being priced out of our 500sft apartment home of nearly a decade, we were fortunate enough to end up with our 1990 treasure of a sanctuary.

We (neatly and considerately, leaving no trace) spent a month and a half trading every few nights between grocery stores and a friendly mechanic’s, before we found an RV park willing to make an exception to their “2000 or newer” policy. We patronized the grocery store, and the mechanic.

We make enough to pay rent, but not first/last/security, and our credit is slowly improving due to “high debt-to-income” that we are steadily paying down.

This park is roughly half our apartment rent, allowing us to pay the majority of our income to the debt. (Payoff date in 2020.)

After all payments including rent, utilities and phone, we have between $140-$170 to eat on and cover any unexpected expenses each month.

We don’t have cable or wired internet. Our cell plan is a grandfathered T-Mobile family plan split with four friends (total of seven lines, less than $25/line unlimited but slow). We don’t eat out or go to the cinema.

We are extremely lucky to *not* be homeless. But many of you would judge us.

We never did anything extravagant (our largest splurge before she got sick, was occasionally going to the RenFaire).

We paid into SSDI, and claimed it when needed. I earned my pension as well, through many years of 17hr days/7-day weeks.

Empathy to those in this thread with similar stories, and gratitude to those expressing compassion.

To the others:
What would you have done differently?

Glenn Bradshaw
1 year ago
Reply to  Ianto Jones

I also I’m in a similar boat or RV.. live in Canada and I’m suffering debilitating arthritis luckily I have an employer who is willing to put up with things taking me a lot longer than normal.. but I have a small dog and I am being turned away from multiple RV sites despite my truck and RV being this… 2014 Dodge Ram Cummins turbo diesel … 2009 VR1 Keystone

Poly
1 year ago
Reply to  Glenn Bradshaw

Oh my gosh! Those are relatively modern rigs. I imagine there is so much demand for the spaces that these parks can turn away everyone who does not have a really modern vehicle. Shows how the RV parks situation is changing – those lots are being bought out by condo developers – while at the same time the income gap keeps getting wider, forcing more people into older vehicles. And I’m getting so sick of seeing all these huge condo complexes lining the roads – they are really depressing to look at, especially knowing that they’re replacing beautiful, older homes, and condo owners are paying through the nose to own (or rent) what are essentially just more dumpy apartments.

Curtis Dowds
2 years ago

I just ran across this encouraging thread. It’s so long and detailed that I don’t have time to read it in its entirety. Much of what I write might have already been said and said better. But at the risk of repeating what others have said, I want to support those who are saying that the “homeless” RV’ers need the intense political support of those of us who aren’t homeless but who do own RV’s for travel and, in my case, traveling and sometimes also work. I’ve been nothing short of aghast at the almost universal response of California cities to the homeless in RVs in their midst. Go away is the short of it. They don’t want you on their streets. And that includes those of us passing through for a day or two. No overnight parking or parking restrictions based on vehicle size is almost universal now.

My purpose in writing, besides expressing my dismay at the political cowardice of those among us who won’t confront the homeless issue, is to second those who are arguing that public RV campgrounds for which there is space in plain sight everywhere (think huge mall parking lots that are never filled and will be less and less filled as Amazon sweeps them away, think, as I’ve already read, abandoned military bases or even exurban farmland that didn’t make it). How much can it cost to level the land, put in drainage and electricity and water hookups and then community showers, laundries, and then charge some kind of minimally subsidized rent for poorer RV’ers who are trying to keep it together. Miscreants, of course, lose their privileges. Of course. And then leave the everyone else alone. The idea that this hasn’t been done already up and down California, the supposedly liberal state, strikes me as a statement about out own greed and fear of falling off the wagon, also as I’ve already said, need I repeat it, political cowardice

Admin
Chuck Woodbury (@chuck)
2 years ago
Reply to  Curtis Dowds

Curtis, good thought but there is whole lot more to it than what you sum up here. It costs a lot to put in hookups, showers, laundries, etc., and the homeless don’t want to be far away from services available in cities. Send them out to the farmland? How will they get back to town? These are not people who tow a vehicle behind their motorhomes. Oh, if they will form a co-op on that farmland and grow their own food, then great. But from what I have seen that just isn’t going to happen.

Poly
1 year ago
Reply to  Curtis Dowds

I agree, though I believe the best long-term solution would be to integrate these people into the main social order with housing and employment. Everyone complains about the high cost of programs like these, but most of these people have been paying into their government all their lives, and they deserve to have programs that prevent them from being forced to live like permanent urban campers when there is so much greed, corruption and wasteful government spending all around them. When a military-industrial project like the F-35 shows essentially zero net sum results after pouring hundreds of billions of dollars into the offshore bank accounts of just a few military-industrial CEOS…

Sidney Peters
2 years ago

Deanna,
Thank you so much for this detailed story. It is heartrending and all too true. Recently I did some research about the Civilian Conservation Corps. During the great depression there were millions out of work. Farmers had to walk away from their shattered lives during the Dust Bowl years, and families had to turn out their own young sons because they couldn’t afford to feed them. They became the “hobos”, jumping trains for transportation and living in camps alongside the tracks. The CCC was created as a program to put young men to work. Unfortunately women were not included in the program.

The CCC did much more than create jobs. It helped restore mid-America’s farmlands by building canals. It trained young men in trades that they later used to support their families. It educated the workers in trade and high school classes during the evenings. It fed emaciated young men healthy meals. It developed parks all over the country with facilities we are still using today. It taught a generation the importance of land stewardship and the delight of being in nature. Supervisors, teachers and other staff received jobs in their chosen profession. Participants had to meet low income requirements and were accustomed to being poor. The CCC gave them meaningful work to do and improved their self esteem. What a great example our history gives us!

I don’t have a solution to the nationwide issue of our growing homelessness population. During those years a person didn’t need a credit check to rent an apartment. They didn’t need a background check to get a job. I do know they were often dependent on the kindness of strangers for food and shelter and most were willing to work hard for very little money. A community for “homeless” RVers could include a food bank, physical and mental health clinic, training programs, and a temporary job agency. I don’t think of it as a handout. I think of it as an invitation to become a member of our society ………. with value and something important to offer. Healthier people with access to good nutrition and education make for better workers and happier citizens. Does anyone really believe that people wish to have devastating circumstances that lead them to homelessness? It’s a chaotic world out there and some of us just can’t cope with the demands of our society.

Nanci
2 years ago

I am so saddened by some of the mean and sometimes hateful comments above. What has happened to Empathy? Humanity? Caring and Concern? We are a nation that purposely established programs using our tax dollars to help and care for those who need our help. Who am I to find fault or worthiness of that help? Are we not our brother’s keeper?
My husband and I are currently camping in a state park in Minnesota and I met a couple that are also full-timers. They however were doing it in a very, very old trailer without a bathroom and had brought their dishes and clothes to wash in the park’s large dishwashing sinks. They were obviously struggling. We exchanged information on campgrounds, places we had been and where we go in the winter as I would with any other full timer. We left wishing each other safe travels.
I was aware that I could go to a laundromat or use the washer and dryer in our brand new motorhome when we had full hookups again and that I wouldn’t be at the dishwashing sink if I was using the dishwasher in the motorhome either.
Financial separation is a thin line and I am grateful for a job that didn’t end on the cusp of retirement, having had a home to voluntarily leave, health, and the ability to CHOOSE to live this dream.

Katalin Heymann
2 years ago

I’m one pf those homeless. I was living in my minivan until 2 months ago. I’m now in a 20 year old travel trailer with a leaky and disintegrating roof. I’m handicapped and living on Social Security and don’t have the financial resources to repair the roof along with all the other things constantly breaking. My sister bought the trailer for me to live in, but she doesn’t have the money to fix the roof. I’m really frightened that there will be a terrible rainstorm and the roof will fall in on me and damage all my belongings. Meanwhile, the lady I rent space from is constantly asking for more money for electricity, garbage and internet. I’m at the end of what I can pay her per month and don’t know what I will do if I can’t afford to live on her property. Where will I go if I have to leave. I can’t pull the trailer with my minivan. I have no credit, my creditors are constantly calling me and even the IRS wants money. Some days I’m filled with such despair, I can barely get out of bed.

Lorin
2 years ago

Understandably (and seemingly unrelated to RVing) it looks like everyone has an opinion on how we should combat homelessness and what’s wrong with how is handled from blaming the federal govt to the state. Personally I think local government needs to seriously get involved more too. It all starts at home.

Our local communities need to create subsidies for low-income people, especially those who are medically fragile and in need of affordable housing.

They also need to be recruiting landlords and apartment owners to work to place people in their units with these subsidies.

Further steps include the removal of housing barriers for people with criminal histories, the creation of more permanent supportive housing units, and the continued education of landlords.

Glenn Bradshaw
1 year ago
Reply to  Lorin

Educating landlords? Landlords have been around since the Industrial Revolution and they don’t need any education

Lorin
2 years ago

We live FT in Texas and we have always homeschooled. One reason is simply because when being technical, the State of Texas considers students living in a campground or in a situation “not intended to be permanent” is considered homeless.

In addition to many other reasons, we did not want to attach the stigma of being the homeless kid at school. We don’t care what people think but a kid in middle school shouldn’t have to deal with it. He’s 18 now and could care less what people think either.

Are there “homeless” people living in RVs? Yes and there’s plenty of “homefull” people living in RVs too. It’s all about your attitude on your circumstances and/or choices.

Here’ are the State of TX education guru’s definitions of homelessness:
42 U.S.C. §11434a provides:
(2) The term “homeless children and youths”’–
(A) means individuals who lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence (within the meaning of section 11302(a)(1) of this title); and
(B) includes–
(i) children and youths who are sharing the housing of other persons due to loss of housing, economic hardship, or a similar reason; are living in motels, hotels, trailer parks, or camping grounds due to the lack of alternative adequate accommodations; are living in emergency or transitional shelters; are abandoned in hospitals; or are awaiting foster care placement;

J. Cherry
2 years ago

Wow, I have learned a lot from reading this article and I have learned a lot from reading people’s comments too.

Mary Sparling
2 years ago

There are a lot of abandoned military facilities that could be used for the homeless instead of just rotting away…. I’d like to travel with my rv but I’m alone and disabled and probably could not do it alone except for just going to visit family and have a place to park it… lets face it some of these rv parks have really jumped their prices

livingboondockingmexico
2 years ago

It’s a question most politicians don’t want to deal with as it will bring them unwanted negative press. Many people are homeless and in rvs for many different reasons. Hard times, divorce, layoffs, and when you’re over 50 it’s hard to get a job, and last but not least mental illness and drug addiction.

We can’t lump eveyone together as they all have different needs. I agree with Dee on local and city governments being proactive by providing the most important of all services that have a relatively low cost to tax payers and that is fresh water, and dump sites. No reason why it’s not being done.

Provide services for the different categories I have listed above. How many people, and I know a few, live on less than $800 on Social Security or Disability? Are they able to work, willing to work, and know that they can earn a certain amount while on SS and not be taxed to death?

Mentally ill are out there, and people don’t realize the cost of medicine and the fact that if you don’t have an address you are less likely to be treated and with little or no money cannot afford medications that provide them stability.

By providing services, instead of punishing the homeless, the city and state would help to control, reduce and help people by providing jobs for many who are willing, and most of all, able to help within their homeless communities.

In the end, this is not going away and will continue to get worse as the global economy is changing. It’s not about import tariffs, companies moving overseas, etc., it’s the plain and simple fact that the height of the 50s, 60s and 70s are gone. Get used to and stop looking to blame others.

How many of us rvers who are more fortunate are willing to help some of these homeless rvers? My way of helping is to show them how they can survive, be happy and live on much less by moving to Mexico, purchase low-cost healthcare here and enjoy the years they have left instead of being beaten over the head for being less fortunate. JMHO

Lydia
2 years ago

Well folks there are different “classes” of RVers. The streets of Seattle are cluttered with RV vagrants who have CHOSEN their lifestyle of drugs, alcohol, panhandling, cooking meth and dealing herion out of their RVs and committing petty crime and sometimes worse. These are the people who leave their used needles in the streets and defecate in the streets when the plumbing in their derelict motorhome fails. It is because of the RV vagrants that Walmart is banning camping in their parking lots. They are NOT “poor and down and out.” They are drug addicted vagrants.

Marcus
2 years ago

The poor have always been looked down upon by those that are well-off. It was that way 3000 years ago and it will be that way 1000 years from now. There are compassionate exceptions, but they are in the minority. What are those individuals and families to do when they cannot possibly afford to pay monthly rent on an apartment and the utilities? They just might be able to scrape enough together to buy an old trailer or motorhome. The roof may leak when it rains and maybe the electric doesn’t work or they can’t hook up to a water spigot because the pipes leak inside…but it is shelter they can afford. Where are the poor to go? This nation spends countless millions / billions on the military every year while the poor struggle to live day to day. All of you who say “just get a job” or “they could do better if they just tried” have no idea how daily desperation tears at your soul. Where have all the jobs gone that used to blanket this nation, in every little town across America? They have gone where business could pay workers pennies on the dollar and amass huge profits. Why do you think the numbers of poor living day to day in old RV’s has exploded??? Because there is no place else they can go. In old England they lived in wretched slums rife with disease and starvation. In third world countries they live in conditions we cannot imagine in our worst nightmare. Cannot America provide these poor with someplace safe to park their tired old RV, with a place to cleanse their bodies, dispose of their waste, and sleep safely through the night? Something as simple as having an address could provide the first step toward a better life for these people. A nation should be judged upon how it helps the least of its citizens. A nation as rich as ours should invest in compassion.

Bill
2 years ago
Reply to  Marcus

Unfortunately the reality of compassion comes with a price tag. In todays economy, the line between being compassionate and needing compassion is becoming thinner all the time.

John
2 years ago
Reply to  Marcus

You have to define “poor”. I would bet that a very small percentage of vagrant RVers are “poor” due to no fault of their own. Most of the ones causing the problems as Lidia said, is by choice.

Tumbleweed
2 years ago

To those who gripe about paying anything to help those who live in RVs due to homelessness, I ask if you’d rather pay to have them stay in subsidized housing and then pay for their other local benefits? It seems to me that it would be a lot cheaper to provide parking spots, water, and dumpsters for homeless RVers (who bought their “homes” on their own dimes) than to provide all the other benefits typically provided for the poverty-stricken.

Aside from that, the problem isn’t just homelessness. The real problems are irresponsibility and thoughtlessness, two faults that are found in every demographic. It isn’t only poor folks who trash their environment. Don’t get me started on the RVers who are well enough off to afford ATVs, and who then feel entitled to utterly trash our public lands and roads with their off-roading and mud-bogging! There’s no difference between them and the RV sqatters who dump their loads on Walmart parking lots and city streets. Bad behavior isn’t dictated by what you call home, whether it be a tent, a beater rig, or a mansion.

Orygun
2 years ago
Reply to  Tumbleweed

Well said. I agree with you completely. Our economy is completely out of whack. How many of us oldsters remember when you were just out of HS and could get a ordinary job that would pay for an apartment, food and beer? You can’t live on a full time entry level job any longer. And inflation-adjusted salaries for production workers actually declined in the last year. “The rent’s too damn high”. RV’s don’t fix the core problem, but at least they give people a relatively secure place to call their own. We should provide them with affordable places to park their rigs.

Bill T.
2 years ago
Reply to  Orygun

Really? If we were to provide free parking, water, dump station and dumpsters for garbage for the “homeless”. Then everyone should jump on the utopian bandwagon and buy an old junker and we could all live for free. You think we are in an economic mess now. I can only imagine the chaos. Someone has to pay for it.

Lorin
2 years ago
Reply to  Orygun

Define “we”?

Homeless individuals within the United States are assisted through various Federal programs. Examples include the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSD) and the Social Security Supplemental Income (SSI) programs. Such applicants may qualify through their medical records. The Social Security Disability Insurance service extends benefits to families if they have earned sufficient work “credits.” The Social Security Supplemental Income service offers financial assistance towards individuals in need who are disabled, blind or elderly. All working Americans pay for these benefits.

HUD estimates that it costs $60,000 each year to house a homeless family in a shelter. Because of this, HUD has various programs in place to help families, including rapid rehousing and permanent housing vouchers. Housing vouchers from HUD are considered especially important for helping to prevent families with children from becoming homeless and also to help these families be able to leave the shelter system permanently. Another government program funded by the American people. The government chips in too.

The Department of Veterans Affairs is solely aimed at helping homeless veterans. Although this organization assists a specific concentration of individuals, it currently constitutes the largest network of homeless treatment within the United States. Again with the taxes.

Not that any of these resources for the homeless are to be discounted. It’s just a few examples of areas that We the People are helping.

rvgrandma
2 years ago

Have lived in our MH for the last 14 years. Started when we lost our jobs and choose the MH over our stick home. We took up workamping to pay the bills until my husband got sick.

We are not homeless – just no ‘roots’.

Dave
2 years ago

My wife and I are 1/2 timers – vs – full timers. We have a sticks and bricks house in So Dak but can’t afford to heat it in the winter. (That’s our excuse and we’re sticking with it) We use Americas Mailbox for our mail and vehicle registrations if they come due in the cold months. But as far as expense we head for Quartzsite AZ and pull in to one of the BLM administered Long Term Visitor Areas. $180 dollars total cost for all 7 months.
BLM provides water points, dump stations, and dumpsters for garbage. The sun provides power and dries our clothes. Works fine for us.

Mark D. Hunsberger
2 years ago
Reply to  Dave

That is what should be done by people who park long term
on city streets or in Parking lots. They should be given a coupon to pay the $180 for 7 months and maybe some gas money to get them to the BLM land where they can live permanently without causing us taxpayers the expense of building them affordable housing!

Tony
2 years ago

The trouble with that idea is that most of these “homeless RVers” in Seattle and the other large cities would not leave because the extremely generous governments prefer to offer plans (at taxpayer expense) that draw people from other less giving areas. Also, the people in BLM areas like to keep the areas well maintained for the most part. They would not like trash or bodily waste scattered around. Nor would they like panhandlers or untrustworthy neighbors. If they throw their trash on a street that has trash cans every block or so, why would they not throw their waste in a BLM open area where the dumpster would require a much longer walk, AND receive no city or private hand outs.