Man lives in a storage unit and explains how to get away with it


#1

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2017/01/13/man-lives-in-a-storage-unit-an.html


#3

I recently moved a friend’s stuff out of a U-Haul storage unit, and he pointed out a few that had sleeping bags and coolers inside. “The security guard on this floor doesn’t care if people sleep here as long as they get him cigarettes or pay him a few bucks, he’s lazy anyway.”


#4

Thanks, Captain Non-Sequitur


#5

Welcome to the new authoritarian era.


#6

“the key is to be a ghost. they can’t know you’re here” … “now check out my awesome surround sound system”

Uh… Okay.

My main takeaway from watching this video… Wow, I’ve gotten old. I have some vague recollections of thinking like this guy, but my priorities have changed. A lot.


#7

Why can’t he live in a van down by the river?


#8

I hope this becomes a trend, not because it’s so great but because the "Snow Crash" future is rapidly turning out to be the most hopeful one America can expect to get:

Hiro Protagonist and Vitaly Chernobyl, roommates, are chilling out in their home, a spacious 20 by 30 in a U-Stor-It in Inglewood, California. The room has a concrete slab floor, corrugated steel walls separating it from the neighboring units and - this is a mark of distinction separating it from the neighboring units - a roll-up steel door that faces northwest, giving them a few red rays at times like this, when the sun is setting over LAX.

But there are worse places to live… slum housing, 5-by-10s and 10-by-10s where Yanoama tribespersons cook beans and parboil fistfuls of coca leaves over heaps of burning lottery tickets.


#9

I watch at the more nomadic van dwelling community a lot, and this just reinforces what I’ve been seeing over the last ten years. People you would not expect are doing these things because they can’t afford to live, or get money. I’ve seen a pair that chose living in a utility trailer over a house on public land because of student loans. They put the money they’d normally put into rent, into their student loans. They both had 100% online jobs, so it worked for them.

I think economically, we have a weird mix of younger, working, folks that are looking at options like this at least short term.


#10

People bragging about turning him reveal the essence of the new “firstness” class. The inherent goodness in being first just is.

Within a few days (or hours) of this going viral, uHaul inventories all it’s stores and finds were this occurred. The account name of the guy is identified. The lawyers all write new protocols for managers. A powerpoint is shown at a trade expo for self storage managers to explain how to stop this behavior before it starts. The likelihood of this occurring again drops considerably.

All without the help of the internet tattletales who crave to be first.


#11

I was living in a popular city a couple of years back, crashing with other people and using a 3x3x3 as home base for my clothes and gear until I could get a place.
A certain number of units were obviously being used by homeless, but the managers were cool and sympathetic as long as one wasn’t being an ass or blatant about living there.
The renter of the cube below mine was actually sleeping in his, but I guess he wasn’t trying too hard not to be noticed, and wound up being evicted.


#12

In London, storage lockers are far too expensive for this. :frowning:

Plus, British people have always relished enforcing petty rules on one another. The only thing that’s just barely kept us away from V for Vendetta, so far, is that there’s also a lot of sullen animosity towards the actual government.


#13

A couple thoughts:

  • You can buy a point-of-use water heater for not much money, which would allow him to have hot running water as well. Of course, I wonder if they work well with very low water pressure…

  • For longer term, he could have hard-piped conduit back out of the receptacle, along the existing conduit, and terminate it in a junction box covering a hole in the wall, through which he could have run his electricity.

  • I am amazed at the number of commenters on Reddit who have no idea just how little people managing/working at one of these places cares. Also, the idea that anyone would be fired is ludicrous. Even if they determined exactly which facility it was (dubious that anyone would go to the effort), the management and/or employees would just say “I had no idea.” Then it’s their word vs. some random video guy’s assertions.


#14

This was my first thought, too!


#15

As the article indicates, the factor that makes crashing in these places possible on a long-term basis is the petty corruption of poorly compensated and apathetic security guards and night managers. As long as the “tenant” doesn’t make trouble and pays his official rent, slipping someone $5 a night (a significant amount for someone who has to make his home in a locker) can ensure one remains for a long time.


#16

This obviously goes to show how disjointed the realty market is even for renting, and making a living wage as well. I think the biggest problem here for people living out of storage units is potential fire hazards and unsanitary conditions.

But if this person really wanted to live on the cheap they could convert a van or vehicle


#17

I know several people who use large storage units as full-time offices. For less than the cost of an actual office, they can have their warehoused inventory at hand, a desk, free wifi, and a loading dock. It’s not pretty and there’s no Aeron chairs or foosball tables but it literally gets the job done.


#18

hoping for a golden rain from Drumpf and his supporters I guess.


#19

Just a matter of time before Airbnb is all over it.


#20

Or it is concern that if this kind of “hacker housing” gets normalized to the point that effective regulations on livable spaces will get stripped away and more people will find themselves still spending too much money on rent, but it will be for the “privilege” of bedding down in corrugated metal shacks.


#21

“The only thing lacking is a washer and dryer”

um…

toilet?
shower?