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8 Ways to Live Off Grid in your Car

When it comes to living off-grid, there are several vehicle options that can be well-suited for a mobile lifestyle (including "Skoolie Bus Conversions"). Here are some of the best vehicles for living off-grid:

Camper Van

Camper vans offer a compact and versatile living space. They typically include a bed, kitchenette, and sometimes a small bathroom. Camper vans are easy to maneuver and can provide the comforts of home while allowing for mobility and flexibility.

RV (Recreational Vehicle)

RVs come in various sizes and configurations, ranging from small motorhomes to large Class A motorhomes with ample living space. RVs often feature sleeping areas, a kitchen, bathroom, and storage compartments. They provide a comfortable and self-contained living environment for off-grid living.

Truck Camper

Truck campers are designed to be mounted onto the bed of a pickup truck. They offer a cozy living space with sleeping areas, a small kitchen, and sometimes a bathroom. Truck campers are ideal for those who already own a pickup truck and want a portable living option.

Overland Vehicle

Overland vehicles are typically off-road capable trucks or SUVs that are modified for extended off-grid travel. These vehicles often have added amenities such as rooftop tents, water and fuel storage, solar power systems, and extra storage for outdoor gear.

Expedition Vehicle

Expedition vehicles are specifically designed for off-grid travel in rugged terrain. They are built on heavy-duty truck chassis and feature robust construction, large water and fuel storage capacities, advanced suspension systems, and comprehensive self-sufficiency features.

Converted School Bus (Skoolie)

Converting a school bus into a mobile home, known as a skoolie, has become a popular option for off-grid living. Skoolies can provide ample living space, with the ability to customize the interior layout and incorporate features like solar power, composting toilets, and full kitchen facilities.

Van Conversion

Van conversions involve converting a cargo van into a livable space. They offer the freedom to customize the layout according to individual needs and can include a bed, kitchenette, storage, and solar power systems. Van conversions provide a compact and efficient off-grid living option.

Tiny House on Wheels

Tiny houses on wheels are small, self-contained homes built on trailers, allowing for mobility. They provide a full living space with a kitchen, bathroom, bedroom loft, and storage. Tiny houses on wheels offer the benefits of a traditional home in a compact and mobile package.


When choosing a vehicle for off-grid living, consider factors such as the size of your living space requirements, mobility needs, fuel efficiency, maintenance costs, and the availability of necessary amenities and resources. Additionally, it's important to comply with local laws and regulations regarding vehicle modifications and parking for extended periods.

12 Tips for Making Your Own Shipping Container Home

See also my older post:

How to Buy, Design and Build your own Shipping Container Home

Research and Planning:

Begin by conducting thorough research on shipping container homes. Understand the building codes, permits, and regulations in your area. Plan your layout, taking into consideration the number of containers needed, the desired size and configuration, and any necessary modifications.

Find Suitable Containers:

Source high-quality shipping containers from reputable suppliers. Inspect the containers for any damage, rust, or structural issues. Opt for containers with minimal previous use and consider ones that are structurally sound to ensure durability.

Design and Architecture:

Engage an architect or a professional designer experienced in container homes to assist with the design process. They can help optimize the use of space, ensure proper structural integrity, and create an aesthetically pleasing layout that aligns with your vision.

Consider Structural Modifications:

Shipping containers require structural modifications to accommodate doors, windows, and other openings. Engage a professional welder or contractor who specializes in container modifications to ensure the structural integrity of the containers while making the necessary changes.

Insulation and Climate Control:

Proper insulation is essential for a comfortable living environment. Insulate the interior walls, roof, and floor to regulate temperature and minimize condensation. Choose insulation materials suitable for your climate to maintain energy efficiency.

Plumbing and Electrical Systems:

Consult with professionals to install plumbing and electrical systems. Ensure proper installation, adhering to local building codes and safety standards. Consider using energy-efficient fixtures and appliances to reduce your environmental impact and utility costs.

Ventilation and Natural Light:

Incorporate ample windows and ventilation systems to promote airflow and natural light. Strategically placed windows and skylights can enhance the overall comfort and aesthetics of your shipping container home.

Sustainable Features:

Integrate sustainable features into your design. Consider installing solar panels, rainwater harvesting systems, and composting toilets to reduce your reliance on external resources and minimize your environmental footprint.

Interior Design and Space Optimization:

Maximize the use of space within your container home through clever storage solutions and multifunctional furniture. Consider minimalist design principles to create a visually appealing and functional living space.

Safety and Security:

Prioritize safety and security measures. Install proper locks, security systems, and fire safety equipment to protect your container home. Ensure that the structure meets safety regulations and consult with professionals when needed.

Budgeting and Project Management:

Develop a realistic budget and timeline for your container home project. Consider the costs of containers, modifications, materials, labor, permits, and any additional expenses that may arise. Effective project management will help you stay organized and monitor progress.

Sustainable Landscaping:

Extend your sustainable efforts beyond the container home itself. Plan and implement eco-friendly landscaping around your property. Utilize native plants, incorporate water-conserving techniques, and create outdoor spaces that harmonize with the surrounding environment.


Remember, building a shipping container home requires careful planning, attention to detail, and expertise in areas such as construction, design, and local regulations. Seek professional guidance when needed, and enjoy the rewarding experience of creating your unique, sustainable dwelling.

Trends in the Off-Grid Real Estate Industry

The real estate industry is always evolving, but the off grid segment of the market is arguably changing the quickest, and growing the fastest. So what's new in recent years?

Increased Demand for Off-Grid Properties:

As sustainability and self-sufficiency become more mainstream, there is a growing demand for off-grid properties. People are increasingly drawn to the idea of living off the grid to reduce their environmental impact, gain independence, and embrace a simpler lifestyle. This increased demand is driving the growth of the off-grid real estate market.

Technological Advancements:

Technological advancements are revolutionizing off-grid living. Innovations such as solar power systems, advanced water filtration, energy-efficient appliances, and smart home technology are making it easier and more comfortable to live off the grid. These advancements are attracting more people to consider off-grid living as a viable and convenient option.

Sustainable and Green Building Practices:

The off-grid real estate industry is witnessing a surge in sustainable and green building practices. From eco-friendly materials and energy-efficient designs to passive heating and cooling systems, off-grid homes are increasingly designed and constructed with a focus on minimizing environmental impact and maximizing self-sufficiency.

Rise of Off-Grid Communities:

Off-grid communities are gaining popularity as people seek the benefits of shared resources, collective knowledge, and a sense of community. These intentional communities often consist of like-minded individuals who collaborate to create self-sustainable ecosystems. They share resources, skills, and responsibilities, fostering a strong sense of community and support.

Increased Accessibility to Financing Options:

Financing options for off-grid properties are becoming more accessible. Traditional lenders, recognizing the growing demand, are offering specialized loan programs tailored to off-grid living. Additionally, crowdfunding platforms and alternative financing models are emerging, allowing individuals to invest in or collectively fund off-grid real estate projects.

Remote Work and Off-Grid Living:

The rise of remote work and the ability to work from anywhere have contributed to the appeal of off-grid living. Many individuals are seeking off-grid properties as a means to escape the city, create a healthier work-life balance, and embrace a more tranquil and connected lifestyle. Off-grid homes provide an ideal setting for remote work, allowing individuals to live closer to nature while maintaining their professional lives.

Eco-Tourism and Vacation Rentals:

Off-grid properties are becoming increasingly popular as vacation rentals and eco-tourism destinations. People are seeking unique and immersive experiences in sustainable environments. Off-grid vacation rentals offer an opportunity to disconnect from the hectic pace of modern life and reconnect with nature, while also promoting eco-tourism and sustainable travel practices.

Government Incentives and Policies:

Governments are recognizing the environmental and social benefits of off-grid living and are introducing incentives and policies to promote sustainable development. These incentives may include tax credits, grants, or streamlined permitting processes for off-grid projects. Such support encourages individuals and developers to invest in off-grid properties and communities.

Education and Awareness:

Education and awareness about off-grid living are on the rise. Sustainable living workshops, seminars, and online resources are empowering individuals with the knowledge and skills necessary for off-grid living. This increased awareness is demystifying off-grid lifestyles and fostering a sense of community among off-grid enthusiasts.

Integration of Regenerative Practices:

Beyond self-sufficiency, the off-grid real estate industry is embracing regenerative practices. This involves creating systems that not only sustain but also improve the environment and surrounding ecosystems. From permaculture gardens and regenerative agriculture to rainwater harvesting and rewilding efforts, off-grid properties are becoming hubs for regenerative and sustainable practices.

As the world continues to prioritize sustainability and the desire for a more balanced lifestyle, the off-grid real estate industry is poised for significant growth and innovation. These trends indicate an exciting future for off-grid living, offering individuals the opportunity to embrace a sustainable and self

How to Find Off Grid Homes, Part 2

Back in 2012 I wrote a blog post titled: How to Find Off Grid Homes. That post became extremely popular, but I feel it was actually short on useful information. Therefore here is an updated version that has more actionable information.

Thus... Part 2!

As our society becomes increasingly aware of the environmental impact of modern living, the desire to disconnect from the grid and embrace sustainable, off-grid living is growing. Off-grid homes offer a unique opportunity to reduce our carbon footprint, live self-sufficiently, and embrace a simpler way of life. However, finding these hidden gems tucked away from mainstream real estate can be a challenge. In this blog post, we'll explore some of the best ways to find off-grid homes, allowing you to embark on your journey toward a more sustainable and fulfilling lifestyle.

Online Platforms and Websites:

The digital era has revolutionized the way we search for real estate, and off-grid homes are no exception. Several online platforms cater specifically to the off-grid community, providing a centralized hub for buyers and sellers. Websites such as OffGridWorld.com, LandWatch.com, and SurvivalRealty.com curate listings specifically for off-grid properties, making it easier to find a wide range of options tailored to your specific needs and preferences.

Local Real Estate Agents

While online platforms are a great starting point, local real estate agents can provide invaluable knowledge and insights into the off-grid housing market. Engaging with agents specializing in rural or alternative living properties can give you access to exclusive listings that may not be available online. These agents possess local expertise and can guide you through the complexities of purchasing off-grid homes, including legal and logistical considerations.

Network and Community Connections:

Off-grid living is a niche lifestyle embraced by a vibrant and close-knit community. Engaging with like-minded individuals through forums, social media groups, and local meetups can help you tap into a network of individuals who may have insider information on available off-grid properties. Networking can provide access to off-market deals or even opportunities to join existing off-grid communities.

Land Auctions and Government Sales:

Government land auctions and sales can be an excellent way to discover off-grid properties. Federal, state, and local governments periodically sell surplus land, including remote and off-grid parcels. Staying informed about upcoming auctions, checking government websites, and registering for alerts can provide opportunities to bid on land or properties suitable for off-grid living.

Alternative Media Sources:

Exploring alternative media sources can yield unique opportunities when searching for off-grid homes. Magazines, newspapers, and online publications focused on sustainability, homesteading, and eco-living often feature advertisements and articles highlighting off-grid properties. Subscribing to these publications or visiting their websites can expand your search beyond conventional channels and introduce you to hidden gems.

DIY and Homesteading Networks:

The off-grid lifestyle often goes hand-in-hand with self-sufficiency, homesteading, and DIY culture. Connecting with local DIY and homesteading communities can introduce you to individuals who have established off-grid properties or may be in the process of selling. Attending workshops, seminars, or conferences centered around sustainable living can open doors to off-grid opportunities and provide valuable insights from experienced individuals.


Finding the perfect off-grid home requires a combination of resourcefulness, networking, and research. By utilizing online platforms, engaging with local real estate agents, networking with like-minded individuals, exploring government sales, following alternative media sources, and tapping into DIY and homesteading communities, you can significantly enhance your chances of discovering your dream off-grid home. Embracing sustainable living and disconnecting from the grid can be a transformative experience, allowing you to live in harmony with nature while reducing your environmental impact. Happy hunting for your ideal off-grid sanctuary!

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