That Guy in San Francisco Can't Live in His $400-a-Month Box Anymore

Turns out it's a big safety hazard to live in an enclosed pod in your friend's house.

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Apr 13 2016, 5:20pm

Original images via Peter Berkowitz and Flickr user RCB

Read: Meet the Guy Paying $400 to Live in a Literal Wooden Box Inside Someone Else's Apartment

Peter Berkowitz—the dude who chose to live in an 8 ft. x 4.5 ft. wooden pod he built inside his friend's San Francisco living room—is moving out of his box-home because it turns out the thing is illegal, the Guardian reports.

Berkowitz's box may have saved him thousands in rent, but it also apparently violated San Francisco housing laws and was a major fire hazard.

"The housing codes, the fire codes, and the building codes are fairly restrictive in terms of what you can do inside, in terms of coming up with another enclosed bedroom," William Strawn, director of public affairs for San Francisco's department of building inspection, told the Guardian.

"With these types of what I'll call 'creative efforts' to try and cope with what everybody recognizes is a tough housing market here, you still have to follow some basic safety."

Housing Inspector Rosemary Bosque told the website Hoodline that in order to make the box legal, Berkowitz would have to open it up to the room, adding that "this would be the case for anywhere in the country with respect to building and inhabitability codes."

Berkowitz originally set the box up in his friend's place for $1,300, agreeing to pay $400 rent for occupying the space each month. He told VICE in March that the pod "was nicer than most people's bedrooms."

Berkowitz has since dismantled the box and vacated his buddy's apartment, moving back in with family now that he has to somehow afford to live in a city where the average one-bedroom costs a whopping $3,500.

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