A TikToker ditched his life in the city to live in a self-built treehouse in the middle of a Hawaiian jungle.
Robert Breton, 35, ditched his life as a supermarket cashier in Northern California to live as he wanted to ‘preserve nature as a whole’ – he has been living remotely since 2011 when he travelled throughout the US in a van to find the perfect place to build a house.
He bought the land using his monthly TikTok earnings and said he does not ‘miss a thing’ from his previous life.
In 2020, he decided to settle in Hawaii, and bought a quarter of an acre of land plus building materials for around £24,120.
It took Robert two years to build his 200sq-foot treehouse, and it is now a fully functioning home with a shower, toilet, bedroom and living area with hot water and double glazing 40 feet from the ground.
He grows and eats over half of his food from his greenhouse.
Robert spends around £20 a month on wi-fi, but has no other bills – other than occasionally buying food he hasn’t grown and gas for cooking.
Robert shares his unconventional lifestyle on TikTok, where he has more than 840,000 followers, to ‘encourage others to go back to basics and appreciate beautiful nature’.
He makes a living through social media and his supplement business, New Earth Organic.
‘The tree house is my living space and I have a bedroom, kitchen, living room and bathroom,’ Robert said.
‘It’s definitely liveable, beautiful and functional – I collect rainwater off the roof to drink and it flows into the kitchen and bathroom.
‘I’ve also got solar panels for electricity, I use it for my kitchen and wi-fi to make TikToks – I don’t miss a thing from my old life really.’
He sees this being the way he’ll live for the rest of his life.
Robert made sure to build everything for his tree house to meet safety regulations, but he did not need to purchase a permit to live there as he is in a ‘non-regulated agricultural zone’.
He said: ‘So it was a matter of slowly building the structure, and then getting the foundation and the walls, and then the metal roof took many months.
‘As soon as that was up, I could start living inside, so many meals and nights were spent outside just under the stars and the rain.’
Robert cleared the jungle’s land without using any heavy machinery or a bulldozer. The total cost was around £12,000.
He found it a little difficult to adjust at first.
He said: ‘I can’t get pizza delivered, or have anyone pick up my trash, or have my mail delivered to my house – that was a little weird at first.
‘But I think it made me realise we all need to be more conscious of our trash – I compost everything I can and try to have little waste.
‘I think it’s a responsibility for all of us as individuals to be conscious of our trash, the water that you should bring in yourself, and the food we grow.’
He grows sweet potatoes, kale and micro greens, then he buys grains, quinoa and supplements from the local town, which is over an hour’s walk.
‘In the future, I want to continue doing this with a family and teach, learn and live a life of sustainability,’ he added.
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