The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Living an uncommodified life

Old trailerWendy Jehanara Tremayne and Mikey Sklar explained that rehabbing an old trailer was part of their quest to live an uncommodified life. 

"When we noticed an RV park for sale, we jumped to buy it.  The trailer on site had been left behind,” Mikey said.

"At first we did not know we were going to live in it," Wendy added.  "We considered hauling it to the landfill.  It was old and crappy.  The insurance company valued the jalopy at $1,000.  The cost to haul it to landfill was estimated at $5,000.  New building came at the cost of $200 Renovated trailerper square foot.  We determined that for $10 a square foot (less than $10,000) we could remodel it, and so we did."

Mikey said, "We have a saying: 'The greenest house is the one that is already there.'  We didn’t like the idea of hauling a perfectly usable living space to the dump in order to avoid the stigma of living in a trailer.  Insulation and thermal mass reduce home utilities.  They are not standard issue in trailers.  But we have found that utilities can be reduced by adapting to the environment.  In the winter we wear a sweater and in the summer we wear shorts."

Building a greywater system "Because our trailer was valueless (according to the insurance company, who said it was worth $1,000), it presented us with a risk-free starting point and an opportunity to learn new skills," Wendy said.  "The renovation taught us to use tools and work with building materials.  Though the trailer may not last forever, the skills will!"

To read more about Wendy and Mikey's adventures in uncommodified living, check out their blog, or the rest of their profile in Trailersteading.  Wendy's first book, The Good Life Lab, can already be preordered on Amazon, and you can stay tuned to its facebook page for updates.

This post is part of our Trailersteading lunchtime series.  Read all of the entries:

Anna Hess's books
Want more in-depth information? Browse through our books.

Or explore more posts by date or by subject.

About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

Want to be notified when new comments are posted on this page? Click on the RSS button after you add a comment to subscribe to the comment feed, or simply check the box beside "email replies to me" while writing your comment.

profile counter myspace

Powered by Branchable Wiki Hosting.

Required disclosures:

As an Amazon Associate, I earn a few pennies every time you buy something using one of my affiliate links. Don't worry, though --- I only recommend products I thoroughly stand behind!

Also, this site has Google ads on it. Third party vendors, including Google, use cookies to serve ads based on a user's prior visits to a website. Google's use of advertising cookies enables it and its partners to serve ads to users based on their visit to various sites. You can opt out of personalized advertising by visiting this site.