All aboard! Retiree buys 'cheapest home in the GTA' -- a caboose

A retiree purchased this caboose in Campbellville for $45,000. (May 18, 2022)

It’s being called the 'cheapest home in the GTA -- a caboose that sits on a commercial parking lot in Campbellville.

And now it’s off the market.

Laurel Wynne, a 64-year-old retiree, bought the caboose after selling her previous property, a 1921 school house near Bancroft, last year.

"(My one son) said 'Oh Mom, you’re so random. What did you do that for?'" Wynne said, chuckling.

The hope was to move closer to her family in Oakville and to save money.

But the high costs of rent, paired with concerns she wouldn’t be eligible for a mortgage, made her house hunt tricky. That’s until she came across a listing for a 110-year-old red train caboose just outside of Milton.

"I’ve definitely never sold anything like this," said Jennifer Krane, a real estate agent with Zoocasa, who sold the caboose to Wynne for $45,000.

Wynne also has to pay the owner of the lot $500 a month.

"We weren’t sure how to list it because it is very unique," said Krane. "But single-family detached is what we came up with."

The converted caboose was previously used as an office by a limousine business. Inside, there were three large benches, as well as mirrors and a sound system. With only about 220-square-feet of space, it is still missing some features of a regular home.

"There’s no bedrooms, there’s no bathrooms, there’s no kitchen. So, I mean, it was a very fine line," said Krane.

But that didn’t scare Wynne away. Instead, she looked at it as a chance to punch her ticket to a less-is-more lifestyle.

"I don’t have a mortgage, I don’t have a water bill. The hydro is not hooked up, although it has hydro, I don’t have a hydro bill," Wynne said.

The structure isn’t attached to any plumbing so she has had to get creative when it comes to emptying her tank.

"I spent an inordinate amount of time researching compost toilets on YouTube, and I thought: 'What has my life come to?'" Wynne said, jokingly.

Wynne is currently renovating the 1912 caboose so there will be a living area, a bedroom and a bathroom. She said even with the renovations, she anticipates paying less than most other properties on the market. In the meantime, friends and family that live close by have also opened up their homes until hers becomes more livable.

Once the renovations are complete, Wynne hopes to relocate the caboose as long as she can find land that’s within her budget. Until then, she’s willing to roll with whatever unique challenges come her way.

"A tiny home doesn’t necessarily have to mean deprivation," said Wynne. "It can mean freedom. And for me, it’s freedom."

It’s an unexpected freedom that’s led her to not only owning a home, but a piece of history.

With files from CTV Toronto