An employed tech worker who recently moved to the Bay Area decided that rents were too high and her housing options were on the lower end of the spectrum were too depressing, so she bought a VW van to live in and has just written proudly about it on Quartz. It does indeed look pretty livable as you can see below, though does not address the bathroom issue where does she go, exactly, when she has to pee in the middle of the night?
Ever frugal Katharine Patterson acknowledges that, because she's gainfully employed and a software engineer no less, she's doing this by choice because she'd rather live in a van than fork over thousands in rent that she could be putting toward her student loans.
Also, at least for now, she's not being hassled by nosy neighbors who see her camped out (illegally) on their street.
Overall, I’m proud of the way my project turned out. But of course this living situation wouldn’t be possible if I didn’t already have a job that feeds me and allows me to shower and do laundry at work. I also have a network of friends who are ready to step in should a crisis emerge and offer me a temporary bed. And I am a young, white woman, which gives me the immense privilege of pulling up a creepy van and parking it without being harassed. People don’t report me; neither do they assume I’m a vagrant. They smile and ask if I need anything.
It is, admittedly, a better living situation than one of those bunkbed-filled hacker hostels, but it's still pretty dicey in the long term. One of those neighbors, unless you keep moving around, is bound to call the cops eventually, and how safe is this, really, for a young woman by herself in the middle of the night in a city where drifters have been known to kill people for a little cash.
Good luck, lady.