Nick Rosen |
Sleeping in Cars
The world is their bathroom

As foreclosures mount, the number of people living in cars is exploding, especially in California, Colorado and Florida, the worst affected states so far, followed by Illinois and Nevada. A clickable map of the worst affected areas, per capita, going down to city level detail can be found here.
James Thalman, a reporter for the Deseret News, says car living has been a phenomenon since the 1930’s, but has rocketed recently all over the country, especially over the past six months.

“They can be found at all night shopping centers, library parking lots, and other parking areas. The all night shopping centers are a favorite because of the availability of the bathrooms, and food. Municipal areas are paroled by the police and those living in their autos are rousted and told to move on or risk being arrested.

“I remember going up to L.L. Bean in Maine,” says another commentator. “They had a well-lighted parking lot. I was amazed at the amount of peopleliving in cars staying the night, and in at least one case, staying the week. The store was open 24 hours. There were clean bathrooms, and food available.”


“There are almost unlimited free parking places to use while secretly living/working inside a “privatized” car,”says Craig Roberts on his web site about living in cars. “Unlike with motorhomes and RV campers, one can live undetectable inside a “privatized” car that blends in well parked almost anywhere–what people don’t know about doesn’t bother them.

“There are locations where one can park without having to be concerned, such as on private property with the owner’s permission. However, parking most anywhere desired is possible while living/working secretly inside a “privatized’ car. Roberts claims his book will help anyone with “stationary nighttime parking needs.”

“Picking excellent parking places requires knowledge of the many elements and conditions associated with suitable parking locations, and it requires developing the ability to “read” a parking location/area for visible and non-visible conditions that affect its suitability.”

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One Response to “Sleeping in cars”

  1. Diane

    I’ve just filed for bankruptcy, I’m staying with my son right now who will be leaving for college in the next 2 months. I have a full time job. I’m having a lot of trouble finding an affordable apartment, (credit check an issue too). I am thinking about living in a van. I have 2 cats that I would have to take with me. I’ve searched the internet about this, and it seem do-able. Any suggestions… (besides getting rid of the cats). I’ve found an abundance of information about how to keep cool in summer and warm in winter.

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