As a child we have all enjoyed imagining living in fantastical houses, be it the magic faraway tree or a house up in the clouds. Even tree houses and lego castles have fascinated us. With advancements in every field and industry, some of these ideas that seemed like a fantasy then have now become viable living options. One such example is the houseboat.
What is a Houseboat?
These boats are used to reside in and there are now plenty of these found in cities that have excellent coastlines. There are many types of houseboats available; you can get both motor and moored types. In countries like India, Australia, Netherlands and Southeast Asian countries, it is fairly common to own houseboats. Recently, the use of these boats has become even more prominent as many countries have started to adopt these with the land prices increasing day by day. Sicamous, a town in British Columbia is now actually known as the Houseboat capital of the world.
What Features do they have?
As the name suggests, houseboats have all the necessary items and amenities that are found in a typical home. This entails a living room, bedroom, kitchen and a working bathroom. Appliances are easily operable and you can even get internet access should you choose to have one. The boat’s hull and other regions exposed to the water are made from strong materials like aluminum and steel whereas in some cases fiberglass is also used. Expensive boats are made from different kinds of wood which is not only strong but also looks elegant.
The interior of the boats is as comfortable as any other standard home. They are fashioned to resemble a typical home and contain many features that include television; carpeting and different other things that make you feel right at home. Houseboats can be both; one or two storied and bought from harbors or built according to your own specifications.
Rumors and Myths
Houseboats have met with skeptics and rumors that do misguide you. Houseboats are not typically a permanent residence and therefore comparing it with one will be a non-sequester thing to do. These boats are a leisure accessory that in some cases can also be used as a place for residence.
Secondly, many complain that living on houseboats creates additional charges. This is again untrue considering the fact that they only require marina charges and fuel expenses. As for the fuel expenditure, it doesn’t depend on the houseboat itself but in fact depends on the current fuel prices set by the government. However, you can now also find houseboats that are able to run on alternate fuels.
Houseboats don’t require special care and equipment. In order to maintain these, you need only those typical things used in a home. Apart from this just keep boat related stuff with you on board.
If you want to live in a houseboat, start off by getting one. This may not seem prudent but houseboats come fully furnished. You should only be careful if you are renting or getting a used one.
There are certain considerations that you need to take care of when dealing with houseboats. If you are to get it in a foreign country as part of your travel itinerary, houseboats are now part of the tourist staple and in countries like New Zealand and United Kingdom they are popular among tourists. Many visitors are now opting for it compared to hotels as it offers them scenic views and comes with an affordable price tag. Remember to check the houseboat and ask for the inventory of appliances so that you know which things come free and which ones you will be paying for.
Houseboats are now becoming part of an exotic lifestyle allowing individuals to easily commute in foreign countries and live in style. They are seen as an expensive living option but to be honest, the return on cost cannot be measured by the price tag along. The reason is that the experience of living in a houseboat is unique, exhilarating and pleasant. The fun of moving around in the sea while enjoying the comforts of your home allows you to easily get the better of two worlds, sailing and home.
Image credit: White HouseBoats
John Parry is a salesman of Houseboats for Hire SA. He is an ardent writer and writes about different ships and boats online. He talks in regard to what you need to know about houseboats in this article.