Lifestyle

Woman who moved into her CAR reveals she saved $25,000

Drive to thrive! Woman who moved into her CAR to beat soaring costs of living reveals she saved a staggering $25,000 in three years – enabling her to upgrade from a Honda Civic to a van

  • Nikita Crump, 31, from Florida, beat the cost of living crisis by living on wheels and revealed her lifestyle that sees her living in a van has saved her $25,000
  • After struggling to stay afloat, she moved into her Honda Civic, and after three years of Civic living, the nomad has traded her Honda for a white Ram van 
  • Although she is still working on renovating her van, she’s set up an air mattress in the back to sleep on and has placed all of her belongings in small plastic bins
  • Having spent the past three years living out of her vehicle, Nikita claims she is finally financially stable after forgoing bills and rent
  • Nikita now earns more money as a travel influencer than her previous jobs and boasts over 1.1 million followers on her Instagram and TikTok

A woman is beating the soaring cost of living by opting for a life on wheels and revealed her quirky lifestyle that sees her living in a van and showering at a gym has saved her a whopping $25,000. 

Nikita Crump, 31, from Florida, spent most of her 20s living pay check to pay check – earning just $1,300 a month – while juggling two jobs. 

After struggling to stay afloat amid the housing crisis and inflation, she packed up her rented apartment and moved into her Honda Civic, and after three years of Civic living, the nomad has traded her Honda for a white Ram van and saved over $20,000. 

Now with the cost of living rising across the globe, the travel influencer shares her nomad life to her one million followers on social media – showing a life not bogged down with huge expenses.

Nikita Crump, 31, from Florida, beat the cost of living crisis by living on wheels and revealed her lifestyle that sees her living in a van has saved her $25,000

After struggling to stay afloat, she moved into her Honda Civic, and after three years of Civic living, the nomad has traded her Honda for a white Ram van

Although she is still working on renovating her van, she’s set up an air mattress in the back to sleep on and has placed all of her belongings in small plastic bins

Having spent the past three years living out of her vehicle, Nikita claims she is finally financially stable after forgoing bills and rent.

And just last year she was able to put a down payment on a Ram van having saved $25,000.

‘I just really can’t imagine throwing money away on rent again,’ Nikita said.  

‘I moved into my car after struggling to make ends meet for several months.

‘I was living pay check to pay check, skipping meals and eating unhealthy foods to save money, and it just got really stressful and depressing.

‘I opted to cut out my largest expense which was utilities and rent and wanted to see how long I could last.

‘I haven’t looked back. Once I moved into my car, my life improved drastically.

‘Sure, it has its challenges day-to-day but I went from a depressed, broke person in 2019, to a thriving and active person in 2020.

‘The financial stability just changed everything for me and also made me see just how sad and affected I was in hindsight.’

Nikita left her first part-time job in August 2020 and was able to pack in her other job in May 2021 to become a content creator.

Although the travel influencer is still working on renovating her newly-purchased van, she’s set up an air mattress in the back and has placed all of her belongings in small plastic bins. 

Despite gas prices increasing up to 15 cents across Florida – with the average price totaling in at $3.45 according to AAA – the nomad insists it’s still cheaper than being tied down with rent and utility bills. 

And while life on wheels has its perks, Nikita admitted her freedom has its setbacks.

She added: ‘Every task is more challenging when you live in a Sedan.

‘I can’t just walk 20ft to a toilet or shower, and I never have complete and utter privacy.

‘I have to drive to a public establishment that won’t mind if I use their bathrooms and leave. I usually go to Target, Home Depot, or my gym.

‘I can’t fathom easy access to a toilet anymore, I’m so used to having to drive to find one now.’

She also occasionally has run-ins with members of the public, leaving her feeling unsafe – including security guards confronting her and men approaching her vehicle.

 The Florida Native first went viral after she documented her life living in her Honda Civic


Nikita took to TikTok to share she chose to live in her car; she added that she made the decision after she was hardly making enough money to survive 

She revealed she couldn’t afford to pay her rent despite having two jobs amid the reversal of the economy and inflation rates at an all time high

The TikToker revealed she had been showering at gyms and showed herself in the bathroom of Planet Fitness and added that she carries her toiletries in from her car 

#ILiveInMyCar & I just wanted a sub! @Subway why you gotta play with my heart? #hotelcivic #freesubwayforlifeplease #adayinmylife #carlife #nomad #subway #callme

But despite the drawbacks, for Nikita, it’s all worth it.

The Florida Native first went viral after she documented her life living in her Honda Civic. 

After constantly ‘stressing over money’, she moved into her car and began posting her lifestyle to her followers.   

‘I’ve been homeless by definition most of my adult life,’ she revealed in a candid TikTok video, which racked up over two million views. ‘I’ve even lived in my car before, briefly. So I’m not that unfamiliar with being in uncomfortable situations and being homeless.

Prior to living on wheels, Nikita was working at department store T.J.MAXX and working at a facility that helped care for butterflies and found herself ‘eating those $1.29 packs of ramen regularly, or not eating at all.’ 

‘I couldn’t afford to go out and get cheap food with friends,’ she said. ‘I was skipping meals to save money and I was slowly and steadily going into debt.

In the midst of her financial struggles, Nikita revealed she chose to ‘cut [her] biggest bill out.’ 

In many revealing videos, she opened up about the various adaptions she made for her new lifestyle and described to her over one million followers how she lives on wheels. 

‘Here’s things in my car that just make sense for homeless life,’ she said.


Nikita added that she uses window covers made from refelctix insulation and black fabric to be safe 

Since moving into her car in 2019 because of rent surges, she has been documenting living on wheels and showing her followers how she showers at gyms and stays safe


Nikita revealed she uses google maps to find a safe place to park her car and sleep at night; she said she uses the satellite view to find a ‘nice’ neighborhood to sleep in

Nikita showed her followers her window covers which she made with reflective insulation and black fabric and revealed how she used google maps to find a safe place to park her car and sleep in at night. 

The Florida native whose full time job is now TikTok, also shared that she showers at her gym and showed herself grabbing her toiletries from her car before heading into Planet Fitness. 

Nikita made her car the perfect home on wheels, fully equipped with storage cubes in her trunk that hold her clothing and other necessities, portable chargers and fans. 

And with rent prices on an unprecedented surge, Nikita has just been one of the many who have fallen victim to the housing crisis. 

With the country going into recession after second straight quarter of negative growth, many like Nikita, are struggling to keep up with an economy in reverse and inflation rates. 

Florida is one of the many states that has suffered to due inflation – which has caused the prices of basic goods to skyrocket, including the prices of meat and poultry, which went up by 10.4 per cent, cereal, up 15.1 per cent, and fruits and vegetables, up 8.1 per cent.

Gas prices are another point of pressure for many people around the country, up nearly 60 per cent over the past year, with the cost of air fares up more than 34 per cent and price of used cars up more than 7 per cent.

Apparel costs are up by 5.2 per cent, overall shelter costs went up 5.5 per cent, and delivery services have gone up 14.4 per cent.

According to SoFi, the average cost of living in Florida totals in at $1,832 per person inclusive of rent – which means that Nikita would have had only around $500 to pay utilities and buy basic goods. 

After COVID, the housing crisis reached a new high and many residents of Florida suffered the consequences. 

According to the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness, Florida has an average of 27,487 people experiencing homelessness on any given day.

Although Nikita’s decision to move into her car was a last resort, she is more thankful she made the decision than ever. 

Nikita now earns more money as a travel influencer than her previous jobs and boasts over 1.1 million followers on her Instagram and TikTok

Nikita now earns more money as a travel influencer than her previous jobs and boasts over 1.1 million followers on her Instagram and TikTok.

Some followers have been quick to slate her lifestyle choice.

One social media user said: ‘You could just, you know, be an adult and not live in your car.’

Another added: ‘Get a job!’

But others lapped up her savvy ways.

One follower wrote: ‘As long as your happy. That’s all that matters. Love you girl.’

‘Love your thought process,’ said someone else.

‘Inspiring,’ said another social media follower.

Another TikTok user added: ‘She couldn’t afford rent. I think this is genius you became resourceful and made the best decision for you. I would have definitely done this if I could.’ 

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