Last year, Victoria, British Columbia resident Gillian bought a 30-foot sailboat to live on, and as a project to work on while Canada’s lockdowns were in place. Her craft, ‘Blue Moon’ is a 1978 Catalina 30 MK1, which she bought for $9,000 CAD – the price including the boat, a tender and a mooring ball in the Gulf Islands.
Today, Gillian lives on the craft full-time, and in this video, she and her boyfriend Jonas share their experience spending their first winter as liveaboards.
One of the advantages of living on a boat in a downtown Victoria location like theirs is that the cost can be much lower than renting or buying property in the same area. Marinas usually charge by the foot, so with ‘Blue Moon’ being just 30 feet long, the monthly cost for Gillian and Jonas was about $500 CAD. That said, it can be incredibly difficult to get a spot like theirs as there are often long waitlists, and many marinas open these spaces up in the summer to tourists, so they’re also not always available as a year-round solution.
One of the main challenges of living on a boat in Canada’s cold climate is that there can be a lot of condensation on the interior of the hull when the air is warmer inside than outside. Jonas and Gillian say this was their main challenge during the colder months, and that they had water dripping down the walls that made their couch and bedding damp. To combat this effect, they bought a small dehumidifier, insulated their v-berth, and also have a wood stove to help burn off excess moisture – but it’s an ongoing problem that a lot of boaters have to deal with.
Regardless, what the couple loves about living on the boat is the cozy feeling of inhabiting a tiny home, which offers exactly what they need, all on board. The dwelling also makes them feel more self-sufficient and connected to their consumption, given that they have to monitor their electricity and water use.
View the original video here.
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