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Converting your Houseboat to the Ultimate Prepper Houseboat

Converting your Houseboat to the Ultimate Prepper Houseboat

Each prepper has their own unique plan for when SHTF (stuff hits the fan). Not often do those plans contain a boat though. A boat can be a beneficial addition for any prepper when creating their plan and collecting their stockpile.

This can be especially useful when you already have a boat at your disposal, which is what we’ll be talking about today. Your houseboat can easily be converted to a prepper houseboat. We’ll discuss that later, but first, let’s talk about the pros and cons for those who aren’t convinced about a houseboat as a prepper asset.

Of course, a bug out shelter on the water is going to have both benefits and challenges compared to a bug out on land. The best option for you and your family will depend on what you and your family’s needs are. A houseboat might be the best option, or it may not be. Here are the facts so that you can decide.

Benefits of a Prepper Houseboat

If you have a houseboat already, this is obviously a very convenient option. This cuts down on costs and time. But even for those who don’t, the benefits of having one might outweigh the cost and time it would take to obtain a houseboat.

You’ll be all alone, far away from society when SHTF.

This is a major benefit. Distancing your prepper space from the insanity of society and close quarters gives you a much better chance of making it. You’ll be far from any looters, mobs, zombies, government, or anything else that might be problematic.

Your bug-out location will be mobile.

Another major benefit of a prepper houseboat is the fact that your safe haven is mobile. If an area is compromised, you can easily pick up and leave the area. Mobile bug-out locations are incredible for when things get bad in a pinch.

A houseboat offers plenty of storage space.

Houseboats are known for their spacious cabins. The galley and cabin both have plenty of room for food storage space, and the cabin often has many cupboards, chests, and other storage options. Your stockpile has room to grow and sustain in a houseboat. Even if you fill both the cabin and galley with your stockpile, you still have the stateroom to sleep in/live out of. And that’s only if worse comes to worst.

Plenty of renewable energy at your disposal.

With a houseboat, there are many options for sustainable energy. If you think of a boat, what is always available? Wind and sunshine! With a wind turbine on board, you will always have electricity and power. Of course, some days the wind doesn’t blow. That’s why it’s a good idea to have solar panels as well. And if the wind and sun decide to take the day off, it’s a good idea to have a small generator aboard to take care of those instances.

Travel large distances.

Did you know that a whopping 71% of the earth is covered in water? With your houseboat, you have a majority of the world welcoming your travel. Provided you have the supplies to sustain a long trip, you could make it to the other side of the world. Again, with mobility, a prepper houseboat could carry you far away from all your problems.

Challenges of a Prepper Houseboat

            No matter how good the benefits of a prepper houseboat are, there are challenges that are important to be aware of before deciding a houseboat is an option for you.

Tsunamis and other bad weather.

The waters out at sea can be incredibly rough at times. With tsunamis, hurricanes, extreme wind and storms, you and your prepper houseboat could be in a lot of trouble. There are ways to counteract of course. When keeping an eye on the sky and the weather forecast, you can avoid most of the bad weather. As a back-up precaution, it’s a good idea to weather-proof your living area so that you have somewhere to go if the situation gets out of hand.

Other Ships

Even though you are mostly alone out on the water, there is a chance to bump into others who had the same idea as you. Most likely anyone else out on a prepper boat won’t want anything to do with you. But some might be looking to loot your ship. In this case, you need to be prepared to defend yourself. Bring the needed weapons and tools to protect you and your livelihood.


Speaking of weapons, they could cause a bit of a problem on your prepper houseboat. For the most part, when you’re out on international waters, you can have all the firearms and weaponry you want/need. But if you come upon the shore or coastline of another country, they very well might confiscate those firearms. When on a prepper houseboat, make sure to bring a wide variety of weapons, from firearms to sling-shots. This will ensure your safety in a variety of situations.


Electronics and water don’t mix well. Since you’ll constantly be surrounded by water it’s important to store your supplies correctly. Electronics could also be affected by an EMP or CME, so correct storage is essential. According to Survival Frog, you can protect your equipment by placing it into an insulated ammo box. You can insulate an ammo box simply with aluminum foil and cardboard. This will protect your electronics and other valuables from being damaged too badly.


In order to successfully live out of your prepper houseboat, it’s important to have the skills and knowledge needed to know how to keep you and your family alive out on the water for months at a time. Without these prior skills, things could go wrong very quickly. You’ll need to know how to portion out supplies, sail the boat, avoid bad weather, and many other things while out on the water.


On top of this, you’ll need to know how to take care of your boat. There won’t be anyone but you and your family who will be able to help you when SHTF. Learn as much as you can about your boat and how to fix it before you have to bug out. Make sure you have every tool you could possibly need to fix your prepper houseboat, on your prepper houseboat. After all, it would be a ironic tragedy for a lack of preparedness to get a prepper in the end.

Materials Needed for your Prepper Houseboat

With a houseboat, you will most likely already be stocked up with the equipment and materials you’ll need for a houseboat, which makes the converting process much simpler. With a kitchen, power systems, showers, sewer systems and more, the boat is ready to be bugged out. Of course, there will be a few things you will need to upgrade or stock up on.


Most likely, you haven’t been using your houseboat to live months out of in the middle of the ocean. This means that there are a few things missing from your boat that will help make life easier. Even if you are looking to buy a houseboat that you’ll convert to a prepper houseboat, these things won’t come with your houseboat. The following things will make living in your houseboat much more possible as well as much more comfortable.
  • Wind turbine. This will help provide sustainable energy.
  • Solar panels. Again, another source of sustainable energy.
  • A back-up generator. This will be useful if/when there isn’t enough wind or sun to power your boat.
  • Laundry machines. You’ll want to be able to clean up out on the ocean, so laundry is essential for your prepper houseboat. Fortunately, because of the demand, washer and dryer machines are now made more efficient than ever. They use less water, less energy and are smaller. This makes it easy to include this amenity in your prepper houseboat.
  • High-tech lighting. It’s a good idea to switch your lighting systems to a brighter, more energy-efficient models as a way to save energy.
  • Keeping the smell at bay. Getting sea-sick is a problem for many when out on the water. This has something to do with the constant motion, as well as some of the sickly smells that happen out at sea. While these are things that you can get used to, many opt for a system to manage the smell of mildew, lake water, bilge, fish, and other unpleasant smells that may occur on your prepper houseboat. Some options to solve this include aromatherapy, scented candles, air freshener, and even products such as FreshWave that breaks down and absorbs smells.

Prepper Items

Now for prepper items. As a prepper, I’m sure you already have a respectable stockpile that you’ll bring aboard your prepper houseboat. The following are some things you might want to include in your stockpile now that you’ll be at sea.

  • GPS. With a GPS, you’ll be able to track and plan a route for your boat so that you’re not just drifting around aimlessly. It’s also a good idea to plan to route ahead of time.
  • Marine and ham radios. These radios may be the only thing connecting you back to the world. Who knows when you’ll need to phone back to those on land? Injuries might happen where you need contact with a doctor or other professional. Or maybe you’ll want to stay connected to keep updated with how the rest of the world is doing. Either way, it will be good to have resilient forms of communication.
  • A television. This can be both something useful, and something use for entertainment. This could be another way to keep up with the world. If you happen to get signal out on your prepper houseboat, having a TV can keep you connected through the news and help you keep an eye on weather patterns. It also can be a way to stay entertained while out on the water day after day. Tune into different stations, or even bring some of your favorite movies to pop in on a slow day.
  • Freezers. A nice freezer will be essential to keep perishable food good. Of course, if it doesn’t work out to have a freezer, you can always live off of non-perishables. This might get unbearable after a while, depending on how long you’re out on the water.
  • Ice makers. It’s a good idea to keep this handy and full of ice. That way, if you have to shut the freezer off for a while, you have ice in store which can help keep food cold for a while, until you can get your freezer up and running again.
  • Watermaker/purifier. A water maker/purifier is incredibly important to have. Out on the water, you have access to an endless supply of water. The only problem is that that water must be cleansed and purified before you drink it. That means you should have backups of your backups when it comes to water purifiers.
  • Collection of batteries. You should have a large supply and a variety of batteries. This way flashlights and other electronics will never be at risk of running out of energy.
  • Fishing equipment. Something that would be a great thing to have out on your boat is fishing equipment. To help you portion out your food supply, and to get a variety in your diet, fishing is a great option. With a rod, some bait, backup fishing line, and the right hook, you can pull a meal straight up from under you.
  • Life jackets. Make sure you have plenty of these babies aboard. They just might save you or a family member from a watery death.
    • Watertight containers. Just like your electronics needs protection from the water, so does your food! Make sure to have plenty of watertight containers on hand.
    • Bailout tools. If you get in a bind, and too much water gets onto your ship, it's important to have the right tools to bailout. This can include bailout buckets, towels, and sponges.
    Converting your houseboat into the prepper houseboat will take a good deal of time and work but will be so worth it in the end. It just might end up saving you. A prepper houseboat is a great option for any family who plans on getting away when SHTF. Happy sailing preppers!

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