You read that headline correctly. Centibillionaire Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) and SpaceX, the second-richest man in the world with a net worth of $162.8 billion, lives in a $50,000 home -- not a $50 million home, a $5 million home, or even a $50,000 a month rental home. We're talking about an actual house that costs $50,000, which Musk rents.
If you didn't even know there are houses available at that price, you might be wondering why Elon Musk of all people chooses to live in one and whether this might be some sort of trend coming from this visionary entrepreneur. Let's find out what's up.
Musk has a mission
When a man who can buy any house in the world chooses to rent (without mincing words) a box that costs less than your average manufactured (mobile) home -- which is around $88,000 in case you're interested -- there must be a reason. And in this case, there is.
Elon Musk is on a mission, two in fact: to make the Earth greener through electric cars (Tesla) and to put people on Mars through his company, SpaceX. To do this, Musk wants to free up his assets, and that includes selling all his mansions (except for one California Bay Area event space that he keeps). Musk calls his rented box near the SpaceX test site in Boca Chica, Texas, home.
About the box Musk calls home
Musk lives in a Boxabl Casita, a 400-square-foot prefabricated and foldable home, so compact that a Tesla Model X luxury SUV can tow it. It's made of concrete panels and steel and is easy to install and move. People can customize a Boxabl Casita any way they like, but Musk chose the base unit and set it up like a studio apartment. There's one "large" room that's partitioned off to include a living room, bedroom, full kitchen, and bathroom with a shower/tub.
Boxabl makes accessory dwelling units (ADUs) that you can set up anywhere that allows them. For $50,000, you get a place to live, but you need to have the land on which to put this house, including utility hookups.
Controversy about Musk's pet projects
Tesla might not be as green as the company would have you believe. According to Forbes, Tesla doesn't disclose its overall greenhouse-gas emissions, while General Motors and Ford do. This lack of disclosure doesn't necessarily mean Tesla isn't as green as the company would have you believe, but it does beg the question as to why the company won't reveal what its carbon emissions are.
Regarding the space-travel mission of Elon Musk, some residents of Boca Chica aren't too thrilled about Musk's SpaceX launchpad being located amid a wildlife refuge in a sleepy beachside community. Prior to Musk's SpaceX arrival, Boca Chica was as unspoiled and "green" as you could get. Now bird populations are threatened, and public beaches are often closed in the name of progress. Of course, fallout is bound to happen with progress, but Musk is seemingly living quite the contradictory life if he claims his mission is that of making the planet green.
The Millionacres bottom line
Boxabl builds mass-produced houses that could be the answer for affordable housing in the future. And Elon Musk does what he does best: innovate. If you're a commercial real estate investor, keep your eye on mass-produced factory housing and whatever Elon Musk is doing.