| by Kenneth Chase | 100 comments

Woman Quits Expensive Rents To Live In A Van

EILEAH OHNING: I had to make a decision that
means either stay or grab a hold of this crazy idea that you just can’t seem to get out
of your head and just go for it. I decided to go for it. EILEAH OHNING: My name is Eileah Ohning. I
am a producer of photography at a local agency in Columbus, Ohio. This is my home and I live
in a van. COMM: Eileah has been living in her van since
May 2017. EILEAH OHNING: I named her Marta. Some people
think it’s really cool. They just want to hear more and a lot of people respond by saying,
‘Oh, that’s amazing. But I could never do anything like that.’ There have been
some people who just don’t get it and they think it is really weird and strange. And
they just think I am an oddball. COMM: Living in a van might seem controversial.
But before that, Eileah lived in her car for a year. EILEAH OHNING: I would say back when I did
the year in the car, the first, maybe 3 nights, I was a little nervous. But I think that was
just because I didn’t know what to expect. And there is this stigma out there that, you
know, because I am a woman I was extra vulnerable. I tend to only park in neighbourhoods or places
that I am comfortable with and that I already feel safe in. I mean, I guess, that’s a
luxury of your home being on wheels, you can move it if you don’t feel safe. Initially,
I was actually looking to buy a home. I was renting and I was renting at a really high rate.
Just because of the current state of economics and what Millennials are up against, I didn’t
have the ability to build capital or down payment to purchase a home very quickly. So,
I started researching tiny homes and then that led to researching minimalism and I realised,
‘Oh, I can save a whole lot of money’ and, ‘Oh, hey I have 42,000 dollars in student
loan debt and I could probably eradicate that in a year,’ which I did. EILEAH OHNING: So continuing the build out,
eventually we are going to be building a closet here, floor-to-ceiling. There will be room
for hanging clothes and then a few drawers for folded clothes as well. The really exciting
part is next to that is going to be a full shower and toilet. So, we will have running
water in here, there will be hot water and cold water. We will have a fresh water tank
inside that’s going to be underneath the kitchen cabinets and then we will have to
do plumbing that will come up across the top of the van over in to the shower area here. EILEAH OHNING: I drastically underestimated
how much time and energy goes into something like this. I thought it would take 3 months;
so far it’s taken 7 months. So, like, maybe another year, a little less hopefully to finish
her. I bought the van for about 10 grand. I would say thus far I’ve spent about 7
grand on the build out. There are have been a couple of repairs that were probably about
2 grand and then to finish the build out I would say I am going to have to spend maybe
another 3 or 4 grand. EILEAH OHNING: The beginning of this project it was still just me. So just me and my dog.
Now it’s me, Brian, my dog and his cat. One of my concerns when we started dating
is he owned a house in a suburb which is very different than the lifestyle that I was headed
towards. I thought that I wanted to live in a van and I wanted to do more mobile living. BRIAN LASTON: I think I dismissed it at first.
I mean she is a very outgoing girl, very busy, always has something going on. I knew it was
something she had interest in. I think I got a text at work one day saying, ‘Hey, I’m
flying down to Florida to pick up a van.’ And I am just like, ‘Wow! Really? Okay,
so this is happening.’ But once she got it back and slowly started including me in
the build, I took a bigger interest in it. So now it’s more or less gone from her dream
to becoming, kind of, our dream. I think it’s been good for our relationship. It’s proven
that in our relationship we are great at teamwork, also great partners. EILEAH OHNING: I don’t know that I ever
see myself going back to traditional housing. I just think that there is a better way to
do housing in general. I don’t need a house. I don’t need something that big. I don’t
need a mortgage that eats up most of my, you know, monthly income. There are plenty of
people who do. Minimalism is about living just off of what you need. So, a family of
6 needs more than a van. But, yeah I think that’s the motivation for me. EILEAH OHNING: I realised a lot of things
that came along with having an apartment or owning a home that I just didn’t have to
deal with anymore. That gave me more time to spend it where I wanted to spend it. The worst things about living in a van? EILEAH OHNING: I don’t know that there are
any worse things.


Daniel Zuñiga Gutierrez

May 5, 2019, 12:51 am Reply

Back in the 1970's tha minimum wage was $125 per week. Average rent for a one Brm. Apt., $140. One had almost 3 thirds of our monthly income to live on and yet, America seems to ignore the red flags. The US has come from the land of opportunity to the land of luck.

Otis Ostrich Farm USA

May 5, 2019, 1:00 am Reply


Sheldon Beatty

May 5, 2019, 1:27 am Reply

When the van is rockin!

Khang Thai

May 5, 2019, 2:06 am Reply

How much does it cost for your van without furniture at start? ?


May 5, 2019, 2:09 am Reply

Expensive rent in Ohio hahahah try Seattle or Frisco


May 5, 2019, 2:54 am Reply

You are very sharp. Many people would like to be like you. Enjoying life. Great.

Mara Vladic

May 5, 2019, 3:45 am Reply

Paying rent sucks who can afford it

Yanai Natsari

May 5, 2019, 4:25 am Reply

Bout to turn my Nissan Altima into a mobile home.

Saul Sandoval

May 5, 2019, 4:34 am Reply

I think it's illegal to live in a vehicle.

Marge Paz

May 5, 2019, 4:53 am Reply

What if he is snoring? No
Place to get away. What if someone has diarrhea?

Michael Prince K

May 5, 2019, 5:48 am Reply

She need to Just give up the van..and get a RV ..they got all kind of size. , the mini, small, medium, and large. So. She anint wise. She dumb

Lala Addas

May 5, 2019, 6:23 am Reply

God I wish I wasn't claustrophobic!!!!


May 5, 2019, 6:32 am Reply

Where is she showering? Answer the question geeez

Billy Times

May 5, 2019, 8:33 am Reply

im thinking about doing this

Alibaba Chiam

May 5, 2019, 8:55 am Reply

Dear…Good…I like u…


May 5, 2019, 10:35 am Reply

Just sad. I will never complain about my house

Meserbee Chek

May 5, 2019, 4:07 pm Reply

I lived out of my VW bus for a week when I got banned from my dormitory. Sad. It was 40 degrees out and my windows did not have seals. I was cleaning and brushing my teeth in the school bathrooms each morning. After waiting for that long I realized I could not keep doing it. So I sought help at some buddies apartment and finally took a shower. That was the only time in my life I was forced to live that way. It seems not as bad but my van was not equipped for it.

Mr Kts

May 5, 2019, 4:08 pm Reply

The american dream

Александр Соколов

May 5, 2019, 4:09 pm Reply


Modern Savage25

May 5, 2019, 5:26 pm Reply

Before I've even watched the video, I've got to say your van looks outstanding. I've driven freightliner vans, and Mercedes sprinter vans, and the are super spacious, and extremely gas efficient.


May 5, 2019, 6:45 pm Reply

Nice lady
Bless you ????

Ray Evans

May 5, 2019, 6:47 pm Reply

Why didn't she just buy an R.V.


May 5, 2019, 7:15 pm Reply

umm I would say no shower

robdaslav Daslav

May 5, 2019, 10:41 pm Reply

It went from being her dream to being our dream. Haha Weak sauce bro.

Johnny G

May 5, 2019, 12:51 am Reply

Totally ridiculous.

In MY Zone

May 5, 2019, 12:59 am Reply

I love you for this! I don’t think this is crazy at all! What is crazy is that America has became so capitalistic its crazy! I think what you’ve done is very resourceful and unique. God bless.

jj oo

May 5, 2019, 2:11 am Reply

She's in a good region to get a hold of some affordable land to park or hang out on the weekends, grow a garden, build an inexpensive shed on skids, so many possibilities.

jj oo

May 5, 2019, 2:20 am Reply

If someone becomes a Declared Resident or Affirmed American National, they have a right to the Postal Routes, that is any street or highway where mail is delivered, without impacting public safety.


May 5, 2019, 3:47 am Reply

It’s very sad that this is what life has become for people in today’s world… especially in America. Cool van though!


May 5, 2019, 4:58 am Reply

I've seen her videos.

Carlos Villegas

May 5, 2019, 5:11 am Reply

20,000 K, to much…

double dumbass

May 5, 2019, 5:39 am Reply

She lives in a van down by the river

Chill Bill

May 5, 2019, 5:45 am Reply

Woman quits commitment to live like a feral…

Psalm 23

May 5, 2019, 6:16 am Reply

I lived in my car when I was homeless. I loved it, but things are different for women. I joined a gym to hygiene. It was difficult trying to find a place to park and sleep, and then when you need to use the wash room at night, it is hard. I made it through, though, and I praise God that I went through that trial, because it allowed me to see things in life more clearly.

messi messi

May 5, 2019, 6:23 am Reply

This is American dream at its best

Tom Yazel

May 5, 2019, 9:53 am Reply

she just decided to go for it.  wow, what a go getter.  such an odd ball.  a real whacky gal aint she.  THERE IS NO STIGMA SO GET OVER YOURSELF..

Tom Yazel

May 5, 2019, 9:55 am Reply

her boyfriend has  a "man-bun"…makes sense.

Lizzy Lee

May 5, 2019, 12:51 pm Reply

Hey that seems comfy. I wish I weren't so carsick.

C. N.

May 5, 2019, 1:11 pm Reply

So She is homeless for 2 days in 6 Months… when She Sent Her Van for regular servicing.

Andres Melendez

May 5, 2019, 2:47 pm Reply

30.000 $ don't see what the deal is?


May 5, 2019, 3:11 pm Reply

This is why I find student loan forgiveness ideas horrible. This women sacrificed so much just to be able to pay off that $42k in debt and people want theirs wiped out for nothing?

alejandro barrera

May 5, 2019, 5:45 pm Reply

Si te roban tu coche se roban también tu casa

Rey B

May 5, 2019, 6:17 pm Reply

She needs to meet a man with some real money so she can stop living like a homeless person.


May 5, 2019, 8:31 pm Reply

I like all the people in the comments. Open minds yay


May 5, 2019, 8:32 pm Reply

Gonna do the same thing… but just sleep on a mattress not put 7g into a shelf

Dan Cino

May 5, 2019, 9:39 pm Reply

Down by river live in van lol


May 5, 2019, 9:44 pm Reply

What a depressing life. Life is nothing without raising kids. As an American, homeowner and father, I just see you as a cockroach scurrying around in your makeshift house. Like a millennial hippy. Contributes nothing to the economy because you decided to give up on life and drive around with your loser boyfriend. This is why America is struggling, shitheads like you only care about yourself, go get a job and a mortgage you slag.

Carlos Lunna

May 5, 2019, 10:11 pm Reply

i love your van my family of 3 kids 2 adults and mini dog are getting ready to buy one like it .
if you go to states were people make a big fus bout parking in big store parking lots getting some magnets that say home depot logos or geek squad etc. is good to have handy

blues man

May 5, 2019, 2:22 am Reply

People are tired of getting nowhere.. paying bills due to paper policies and taxes.
Life in general has become overpriced for most and the light at the end of the
tunnel is dim. This is the new wave of living in one of the richests countries in
the world, government has let this nation fall into the hands of the beast.

Louis Zhou

May 5, 2019, 3:29 am Reply

Living in Columbus Ohio, I feel like I’ve seen this van more than once.

Gabriel Afonso

May 5, 2019, 3:38 am Reply

This guy is definitely not hitting it right

Eternyl Bliss

May 5, 2019, 5:02 am Reply

Could you imagine dating someone and she takes you back her place … her van. I could see this on POF dating site.

Ravage Gonza

May 5, 2019, 5:59 am Reply

Why didn't she just buy a camper and mod it a little?

Joel Driver

May 5, 2019, 10:41 am Reply

As you know I am 35 years old, I am thrice divorced…and I live in a van down by the river. Matt Foley

Neil Lloyd

May 5, 2019, 8:51 pm Reply

I live in my car I used to every now and then I do still but I got a HHR 2009 Chevy and it don't have any windows in the back so I use it for a bed I take a shower and I'll shower take a bath in there with that I don't like a bucket and stuff and I really like it and I close the front off with the nice blanket so are you can see is it being empty you know and it's pretty cool and you know when I wash clothes I get a bucket and I wash my clothes and I'll am on my car out in the mountains until they try and then I get river water and take a bath this is what the world's coming to do today cuz America we are getting so poor and we don't make that much money so this is how we live today and I don't mind it at least I know I'm safe and I'm okay may God be with all of us in Jesus name I pray Lisa Brown

Wee Crowdfund

May 5, 2019, 3:22 am Reply

Find 100 other van dwellers….
100 people × 5,000 = 500,000
Purchase 10-20 acres in the woods near a water stream….
Purchase a NEW school bus….
And there STILL would be cash left over from the 500,000….
The idea is that MONDAY – FRIDAY ATLEAST 25 people for the 100 MUST enter the school bus and the bus will drive to town and take all 25 people to work…… sooooo average pay per month for a person is 2,500 dollars
Ok, 25 people × 2,500 per month EACH= 62,500 PER MONTH ??????????????
When the 25 people get tired after 6 months….ANOTHER SET of 25 from the 100 people camp will now enter school bus to work….
At camp daily the other 75 people grow fruits and veggies, cows,hogs,chicken,turkey, bee colony and more
So food wont be a big expense …
Barter this organic meat and veghies with locals for protection, other foods or farm help…..
Offer SEMINARS so other small van,trailer, campground villiges can start ……
There …I gave the blueprint to the GARDEN OF EDEN for 100 van people ….you are welcome…..also….a simple GOFUNDME can EASILY bring this to life……

Richard Woolley

May 5, 2019, 4:35 am Reply

Give us an update in 3 years!


May 5, 2019, 5:39 am Reply

Wow, for that kinda money, she could have bought a 32 foot motor home. Every fall retired folks decide they're too old to store and drive their vacation on wheels. I've done it. $750 total and lived in and managed an RV PARK for 6 years. I've built my own tiny house now, but it helps to be committed and talk about deals.

Jeremiah Griffith

May 5, 2019, 9:02 am Reply

2:23 Was she cooking up meth?


May 5, 2019, 8:39 pm Reply

Most live to just pay debts. Good for you on your choice. The bummer thing is, you will have to pay off the loan for the van and it depreciates. But….you can go anywhere and you can park it anywhere

Brick bowl

May 5, 2019, 3:07 am Reply

My uncle did this one time he sure brought a lot of kids


May 5, 2019, 3:17 am Reply

It doesn't matter what others think about HER choices! It's very cool but it's a shame ppl have to do this and most areas aren't really safe but good for her!!

A. Aquino Sanchez

May 5, 2019, 9:23 pm Reply

This lady thinks just like me!

Jen M

May 5, 2019, 10:08 pm Reply

I live in NYC, I sooooooo want to do this

Peter Piper

May 5, 2019, 2:45 pm Reply

Nobody ever BUYS a home. When you finish paying for it, you are STILL renting because you are paying real estate taxes every year. If you think you own your home, try not paying the taxes and see what happens. You lose it just like that! So you NEVER really own your home.


May 5, 2019, 8:02 pm Reply

Good on you, well done

Master Mix

May 5, 2019, 7:57 am Reply

she must be single.


Jun 6, 2019, 11:22 pm Reply

Remember to open the windows after a dump. 8-(

Jose Duran Jr

Jun 6, 2019, 6:55 am Reply

I lived in a 22 foot travel trailer for 10 years. Now I have a mortgage and 2,000 sq feet of space for 20 years. Lost my job and now I think I can live I. My 2016 Ford Transit Connect titanium long wheelbase van. I’m scared.


Jun 6, 2019, 4:31 am Reply

Just buy a class B

Tommie Everett

Jun 6, 2019, 2:50 am Reply

J&T I'm so happy to see you all I haven't seen you all in a great while glad everything is going well in your new apartment it's going to look great I know you always going to do a great job keep loving each other and I'll keep watching you okay

Yvette Abiera

Jun 6, 2019, 2:25 pm Reply

I want to.marry you

Kevin Rehberg

Jun 6, 2019, 10:55 am Reply

Congrats.. you learned the minimalism way of life and realized we don't need the trappings of society..No its not easy….. but the homeless do it.. in fact most of your elderly in Nursing Homes live this way too..They don't have all of the toys.. and pretty much let the staff take care of them..So it is possible to live with fewer toys than society deems needed..Good Luck with your adventure


Jun 6, 2019, 8:54 pm Reply

Shed definitely get it x

Charlie Wilson

Jun 6, 2019, 12:39 am Reply

That was a good idea because she was using her imagination for relief. Now that you are there buddy she'll be using you as her relief. That type of creates little ones eventually. That's when the Van life is going out of the window. Enjoy it while it last.

Haley B

Jun 6, 2019, 3:30 am Reply

Van life bed lol!

Armando Quintanilla

Jun 6, 2019, 3:51 am Reply

Why not just get teavel trailer

Charley Ghanem

Jun 6, 2019, 8:51 am Reply

She is super smart.

Evian Pollack

Jun 6, 2019, 7:33 pm Reply

i ain't gon lie, i'll live in a van just to skip high rents cause ain't nobody got time 4 dat ! Lol the mere purpose would not be to travel at all but just to save rent money.

Vincent Nieuwhof

Jun 6, 2019, 10:10 am Reply

It’s important to keep those solar panels clean. Must get into rock climbing…

New Zealand

Jun 6, 2019, 7:31 am Reply

I lived in my 2015 toyota hiace courier work van for 7months, work at day n sleep at night.i had a house mortgage 300kms away where my wife n son lived. It wasnt tough really just lonely, im a game hunter so living rough wasnt a problem

Juju Rellama

Jun 6, 2019, 9:25 pm Reply

she can furnish the van and use it for business, if you know what I mean


Jun 6, 2019, 2:29 am Reply

She's a hottie. And the girl is cute too!!

Suyog Humagain

Jun 6, 2019, 11:24 pm Reply

Hey wh Dead you buyavan

Brandon diesel

Jun 6, 2019, 6:10 am Reply

I hope she kidnaps me in that stranger danger van.


Jul 7, 2019, 9:47 pm Reply

You can tell this van doesn't live in an English climate. Any Sprinter of that age in the UK is a rust bucket.

Noufal Muhammed

Jul 7, 2019, 10:03 am Reply

Lonely life give lot of dreams

Nebojsa Grdinic

Jul 7, 2019, 4:31 pm Reply

Its not weird, its great

badar badr

Jul 7, 2019, 7:51 pm Reply

To much money to much have fun to much enjoy but that is human life what you want tobe and what you will be

Yuriy Pasternak

Jul 7, 2019, 10:42 pm Reply

31 with over 50k in student loans…. school is a scam


Jul 7, 2019, 7:11 am Reply

The biggest build you need is to have a boyfriend who has money and a house?

Derrick Zupf

Jul 7, 2019, 1:59 am Reply

does she still live in her van?

John Smithy

Jul 7, 2019, 3:10 am Reply

The worst thing about living in a van is that you're not investing in a house. But if you're saving money it's a good thing.

Martian 51

Jul 7, 2019, 7:30 am Reply

Get a box truck and live in that

Ken Stickland

Jul 7, 2019, 2:06 pm Reply

Shes a beauty ?

June Seed

Jul 7, 2019, 3:02 am Reply

This is amazing how she transfer her van into a home.This what CA homeless people need. A van and a home. What if the get stolen by thieves ? All that dream will be gone.


Jul 7, 2019, 7:13 am Reply

I kind of want to live in a van

Jonathan Underwood

Jul 7, 2019, 2:21 am Reply

I know someone is going to help at me for this but all I had to do is near Ohio and subbed!

Taz nmc

Jul 7, 2019, 7:01 am Reply

Question?That seems like a lot of work and money, why not just buy a small RV. Never bought an RV so I don't know how much it cost but it seems more efficient since it has a bed and ice box, bathroom already in it.


Aug 8, 2019, 11:49 am Reply

talks about buying a home cause she was looking into it, then complains she cant cause she still has 42k in student loan debt. LOL. another dreamer. work on 1 thing at a time.

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