They've Been Living in an Off-Grid Floating Home For 25 Years

by Simplify

Charlie and Ellen are a fascinating couple who enjoy living off the grid in a floating home you have to see to believe. With excellent access to the ocean by boat, the couple’s home is decked out almost entirely in cedar, is roughly 900 square feet, and has two levels.

Plus, it has a fully-stocked kitchen with a large pantry, a laundry room with a washer and dryer, and a spacious living room and dining room in addition to three bedrooms and a storage area upstairs.

Impressively, Charlie built this entire DIY floating home on the West coast nearly 30 years ago and has been a proponent of off-grid living ever since.

When it comes to learning how to build a floating home of his own, Charlie says he acquired quite the inventory of driftwood, which he then used to build things like furniture and a staircase for the home. He also built a covered porch and multiple decks around the perimeter of the floating home for relaxing and enjoying the view as well as storing dry wood.

Surprisingly, Charlie says that the whole home floats on styrofoam. But if he had to do it all over again, he would use a different kind of heavy-duty system made out of plastic instead.

Floating home

After building the cabin part of the floating home, Charlie moved onto the boat house next.

And while they live completely off-grid in their floating home, Charlie attributes their ability to continue in this lifestyle thanks in no small part to other people and resources in their local community. Ellen also maintains a large garden and uses crab traps to catch a fresh seafood meal.

Lastly, the power is supplied to their floating home by a solar system and their water by a nearby creek.

Floating home

For stories about life on the water, discover why he mounted solar panels on his sailboat or take a tour of this floating island home made out of old fish farms.

To see more videos, check out the Exploring Alternatives YouTube channel.

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3 of 4 comments
  • Pgd4244118 Pgd4244118 on Oct 08, 2022

    When my financial situation improves and Charlie is ready to vacate, I would be interested in purchasing his floating paradise with the stipulation that he could visit.

  • Anna Y Anna Y on Oct 10, 2022

    I would love to do that for myself!