TaxProf Blog

Editor: Paul L. Caron, Dean
Pepperdine University School of Law

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Student Lives In A Van To Cut Costs Before Starting UVa Law School

Virginia LogoDaily Progress, Prospective UVa Law Student Sleeps in a Converted Van to Save Costs:

Jeremy Kemp was trying to think of ways to shave down his cost of living while saving up to hike the Pacific Coast Trail in 2018, so he stopped paying rent. Instead, he bought a cargo van for $5,000 and spent two weeks insulating it, building a bed and tacking patterned fabric to the ceiling. Now, he spends his nights in it and his days working in local restaurants and tutoring. ...

Average rent in Albemarle County and Charlottesville has been rising. The median cost of a one-bedroom apartment in the city is $930 per month, according to Apartment List. Meanwhile, 2016 graduates from the University of Virginia School of Law have an average indebtedness of $155,117, placing UVa in the top 20 of law schools with high debt loads, according to U.S. News & World Report. The average indebtedness of UVa out-of-state undergraduates was $28,669.

Kemp said he’s been accepted into UVa’s law school as a Dillard scholar, which means he’d get free tuition, but also is applying to Yale, Penn, Duke, New York University and others.

Unfortunately, wherever he ends up, the van probably won’t go with him, but Kemp said a few friends already have put in bids for it.

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This has become quite common. Search Youtube for "stealth van" for numerous illustrations of van conversions. The "stealth" is because they're often designed to look like ordinary work vans to get around 'living in your car' restrictions.

Posted by: Michael W. Perry | Dec 5, 2017 4:56:43 AM

In other words, an accepted T14 0L plans spend next year hiking.

Posted by: Unemployed Northeastern | Dec 5, 2017 7:01:14 AM

#Vanlife sounds pretty comfortable as compared to the camping life...

Posted by: Matthew Bruckner | Dec 6, 2017 8:28:13 AM

Once he graduates with his useless law degree, he'll be lucky to live in a van!

Posted by: hal | Dec 7, 2017 10:27:30 AM