Why bother paying rent when you can shower, eat, work-out, do laundry and sleep at your office?
“Technically, you weren’t supposed to live at the office, but people got around that by living in their cars in the parking lot of the office or the Shoreline parking lot,” one Googler writes. “[One] guy lived in the camper for 2-3 years. Showered at the gym. Did his laundry on campus. Ate every meal on campus he could. After the 2-3 years, he had saved up enough money to buy a house.”
Former Google designer Brandon Oxedine says he lived on Google’s campus for 3 months in 2013.
“I was in a unique situation working at Google where I had showers and food that were very convenient to me,” he writes on Quora. “I lived in a Volvo station wagon…I set up a twin mattress from IKEA and put up black curtains (on the 90% blacked out windows) and slept there mostly every night.”
Ben Discoe, a Google [X] UI programmer, says he lived on Google’s campus for 13 months.
“I had a house payment and alimony to pay,” Discoe writes. “No money left for South Bay rental prices. I got a 1990 GMC Vandura custom conversion van for $US1800 (blue velour, wood paneling, previously tricked out by a burner) and that (roughly speaking) was my entire rent for the 13 months.” He, like Oxedine, also put Ikea mattresses in his car and used curtains to block out the light.
Where is Google’s security in all this? Discoe says a security guard came by once during his stay at the Googleplex, learned he was an employee, and never came back.
It’s not clear what the Googlers like Discoe did when they had to go to the bathroom at night.