The benefits of living in a houseboat are the same benefits that are available to a land-based home that lives off the grid.
We lived on a sailboat, a houseboat with sails, in the Caribbean for eight years, it made us very aware of how wasteful life on land was in comparison to sailboat life.
We also realized the freedom of making your own energy by the use of solar and wind power… A houseboat has a very low or zero carbon footprint when compared to living on land.
Our floating home supplied 90 to 95% of its energy requirements with wind and solar power.
We had a 12 V refrigeration system on board our 35 foot sailboat called, Shadowtime, this refrigeration used around 85% of the total energy that we consumed.
Our experience told us that we needed 110 to 120 amp hours of electricity in a 24-hour period when we were stationary… And we were stationary 98 to 99% of the eight years that we were in the Caribbean.
We had two 75 W solar panels located on top of our Bimini… They required no maintenance, made no noise and had no emissions… With today’s higher wattage solar panels we could have eliminated our wind generator.
Why would you want to eliminate your wind generator? It could be noisy, especially at higher wind speeds. It was a Catch-22, the higher the wind speed, the more electricity it would produce, but the noise and vibration would cause you to tie off the wind generator to restore peace and quiet on the boat.
When using solar power and wind power your emissions are eliminated… And since our houseboat never left the Caribbean we did not have to generate heat of any kind.
As far as consuming natural resources is concerned living on a houseboat teaches you how wasteful most people are when it comes to fresh water consumption in a normal home.
An average family of four in the United States uses 400 gallons of fresh water in 24 hours.
Our sailboat had a freshwater tank with a 90 gallon capacity… We found that this 90 gallons would last us for two weeks… It included a daily shower a piece, water for doing the dishes, and provided our drinking water.
These green benefits of living on a houseboat when combined with the fun and freedom that such a lifestyle entails, makes you feel more like a good steward of our precious natural resources.
We went from never stepping foot on a sailboat to living on one in four years and we can show you how… You too can enjoy this ecologically friendly lifestyle.