To this day, many people pursue the American Dream of owning a home.
But if you can’t afford to buy a house, have lost your home, or are unable to sell without a loss, you’re probably desperate for lower-cost housing options.
Here are a few alternatives to the traditional American Dream:
4 Low-Cost Housing Ideas
1. Room Rentals
If you already own a large home and have some extra space, this might be a good way to get caught up on your mortgage payments and other financial obligations. It can be challenging to open your doors to a stranger, but as long as you utilize a good screening process, this arrangement works well for many people. Young adults traveling for work or internships are often looking for these type of living arrangements, because they don’t require a lengthy lease and are cheaper than renting an entire apartment.
2. Co-ops & Rental Management
Co-ops are growing in popularity. With a co-op, you share property and maintenance responsibilities with other owners. They’re supposedly cheaper than condos, so they’re ideal for people who want ownership rights for a smaller price. Of course, much depends on which one you choose and who your co-op partners are.
Most people consider renting only as a last resort or in a temporary situation, but have you ever considered managing a rental establishment? Many owners allow managers to live in one of their apartments rent-free! Your job will require you to be available for renters’ needs at all hours of the day, but you can save a considerable amount of money to put towards eliminating debt or purchasing a home.
3. R.V. Living
Many retirees are now taking to the roads in their recreational vehicles, fed up with other expensive housing options. This type of living is for the adventurous at heart, as it allows you the freedom to pick up and go almost anywhere you want. Beyond the initial expense of purchasing an RV and its routine maintenance, you’ll need to pay RV park fees, which are usually cheap. (Though some places you stop will be free.)
You don’t have to be retired or on the road to live in a mobile home, however; MoneyNing contributor Alexa Mason purchased a trailer to use as inexpensive housing.
4. Tiny Homes
I recently saw an advertisement for a compact house you could build for $10,000-$15,000. If you browse the Internet, you’ll find dozens of webpages dedicated to the design and sale of these “tiny houses.” Most of them are ultra-modern, creatively designed to utilize every square foot, and surprisingly spacious on the inside. Some of the homes are permanent, while others can be mobile. This trend is becoming popular as people become disillusioned with the housing market, and also have the desire to live more simply than in the past.
What other low-cost housing ideas do you have? Have you tried any of the options above?