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I lived in a camper for 5 years while I built my tiny house. I already owned the land.

Either choice you make, permanent structure or trailer, you will need an approved septic system and a well.

The rules may vary by county. Nelson County granted me a 1 year temporary permit to live in the trailer with the following provisions:

1. The connection between the camper and the sewer line needed to be inspected.
2. A building permit for the permanent house must be approved.

The electric company will connect you if:
1. You have an approved building permit.
2. You will need to contract with an electrician to install a temporary power pole and an outdoor distribution box.

Important note: The temporary permit for the trailer is for one year. My experience was that I lived in the trailer for 5 years and no one complained.

Some advantages of a travel trailer are:

* Ready to be lived in after sewer, water and electric hookups are finished
* Appliances are built in
* Used trailers can be very inexpensive, and if the world does not fall apart the trailer can be resold.

Until my small house was ready I lived in a 35 foot long travel trailer that I purchased for $10,000. Five years later, after saving enough money to build my 621 sq ft house (Sassy Lilac), I sold the trailer for $4,000. That calculates to be a monthly cost of only $100. Now that is frugal living.

Some disadvantages of the travel trailer are:

* No place to put a wood stove which is the most reliable source of heat during stressful times and long supply lines
* Walls and roof are thin and poorly insulated which increases energy requirements for heating and cooling.
* A constant supply of electric power is needed in colder climates, more than can be provided by a reasonably priced solar electric system, to prevent the exterior water supply line from freezing.

The combination of a travel trailer and storage building, or travel trailer parked under a roof shelter with a storage building at one end can provide many options. In situations where the local inspection department must be dealt with, it may be possible to get a temporary use permit for the trailer if an approved sewer connection is available.