to consider living in a canal boat?

(90 Posts)

OH and I are saving and saving to buy land and build (and maybe for me to set up a business) and he would like to move from our rented house to a canal boat (we live near a lot of canals).
It would definitely save money though there would be certain sacrifices but I can't help but think that it would be a bit of a laugh...
We're in our mid-twenties and don't have any responsibilities, it could be a lot of fun (?)
AIBU to seriously think about it or have I got some extremely rose-tinted glasses on?

limitedperiodonly Thu 14-Mar-13 19:12:03

My friend does. It's a larger than average boat and she's single. Do you want me to ask her and PM you?

PM me with your questions.

Geekster Thu 14-Mar-13 19:12:36

There is no way I would live in a canal boat. I went on a canal boat holiday with my family as a teenager, it was cramped you had to pour water down the loo if you did a poo. And we all had asthma attacks at night from the fumes! We went home three days early which is unheard of of my Dad if he has paid for something! My MIL suggested me and DH going on a canal boat holiday with them I said NO! It was a few years ago things might have improved since then.

Librarina Thu 14-Mar-13 19:13:35

Not at all. A friend of mine lives alone on a lovely narrow boat and I am very jealous of her life. There are if course complications, but it is warm and cosy, has everything within that you need and has the advantage of a quirky and interesting community on the mooring. I've stayed over for weekends and the odd week and have always loved it. It is particularly nice being gently rocked to sleep by the waves.

I have no idea as to the cost but it does work out cheaper than a house and it is definitely more fun!

RooneyMara Thu 14-Mar-13 19:17:55

The thing wot worries me about this, and I LOVE canal boats - is that you'd have to vacate it for a certain amount of time each year for maintenance. Also all the things to do with registering for medical services and council tax and all that gumf.

Otherwise I'd say go for it.

TheAccidentalExhibitionist Thu 14-Mar-13 19:18:10

I think it sounds lovely. I'm very envy
If you get the opportunity, take it!

thebody Thu 14-Mar-13 19:20:50

I know absolutely nothing about it but I do know that life without kids and responsibilities is the time to do stuff like this.

Sounds fantastic.

Camwombat Thu 14-Mar-13 19:22:58

Do it! we lived on a boat for 8 years and loved it! smile
A proper liveaboard boat is set up very differently to a hire boat.
We cruised around the canals and rivers.
It was a heartbreaking time when we moved off and sold it. sad
PM me if you want more info on it.

TomDudgeon Thu 14-Mar-13 19:23:32

Is it seeker who lives on a boat? There's a regular who does

CloudsAndTrees Thu 14-Mar-13 19:24:04

I know a family of four that lives on a boat. I'm not sure if its what you'd class as a canal boat though, I'm pretty clueless when it ones to types of boats!

I think it would be a nice lifestyle if you weren't bothered too much by cold, wind, and lack of storage space. It is cold and windy every single time I visit this family, even in the summer. It would make me miserable.

PopeBenedictsP45 Thu 14-Mar-13 19:24:59

Do it! Our friends live on one and love it. The only time they get a bit cabin feverish is in the winter because they can't sit outside. They have a lovely life and as Librarina says, the camaraderie along the canal is great.

MooncupGoddess Thu 14-Mar-13 19:27:36

Narrowboats are lovely, and if you fancy a weekend away you can take your house with you!

But it helps if you're quite handy as minor issues often crop up. And check the heating and plumbing situation carefully before you commit to anything.

apolloduck is the website to check out.

LynetteScavo Thu 14-Mar-13 19:28:04

Well I can't sit outside in the winter, and I have a large garden!

If you don't have any DC, I think it would be great. If you have toddlers, I imagine it would be difficult.

akaemmafrost Thu 14-Mar-13 19:28:19

I would love this. Someone I used to know had a permanent berth and had a little garden cultivated on the river bank right next to her boat. It was lovely. Where my parents live is very rural and I go running along the canal there. Quite a few boats and when it's early and do quiet and beautiful I think it must be the perfect life getting up and sitting on deck with a cup of tea. I'd do it in a second if I could.

Magimedi Thu 14-Mar-13 19:29:30

Do it! No responsibilities is the time to do crazy things.

Locketjuice Thu 14-Mar-13 19:29:43

My parents live on a Dutch barge smile

They love it, I also lived on it for years smile

I think it would be an adventure. No one would be surprised, we are quite "quirky" but the lack of space bothers me. I like space... but then maybe I would be more appreciative of space when we move to build a house?

TeacupTempest Thu 14-Mar-13 19:34:13

I live on a boat. Not a canal boat though. Life can be more of a challenge in a day to day way but it definitely has benefits.

TeacupTempest Thu 14-Mar-13 19:35:45

It's a bit like being a goldfish...you grow to the size of your pond. Its cathartic to get rid of so much stuff that you don't really need!

Camwombat Thu 14-Mar-13 19:35:55

It is a wonderful lifestyle, there are lots of blogs to read of people who liveaboard.
We only moved off because we wanted to have baby in house and not on a narrowboat. Plus by time we moved off I was so big...
DO IT, DO IT, DO IT! (btw I love boat shopping)

NicholasTeakozy Thu 14-Mar-13 19:38:24

I know a man who lives on a narrowboat, just him and his dog. He loves it, moors up for a few weeks in one place then off he goes to the next place. I do envy him a bit.

I like this one! Canal Boat

Camwombat Thu 14-Mar-13 20:06:16

also look at abnb, whilton marina (good for wide selection), Apollo duck.
that looks reasonably priced, I would want a bit more info about it.
I think I pm'd you.

seeker Thu 14-Mar-13 20:09:12

I wouldn't live on a canal boat, I would- and do- live on our boat though!

What kind of boat do you live on, seeker?

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