Straightforward trope -- the hero is that much cooler because he not only ''has'' a CoolBoat, he actually ''lives'' on it (in theory, the hero could live on an uncool houseboat, except that houseboats are almost inherently cool), making it, at the same time, a CoolHouse. This may be symbolic of the hero's cool detachment from things, since he could (in theory at least) just raise anchor and move his whole life away whenever he wishes. Doesn't apply to people who live on a boat which serves as the home base for dozens or hundreds of occupants, or to those who just ''work'' on a boat owned by someone else, even if that's where they spend their nights (in a navy, as a pirate, on a cruise ship).
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!!Examples:

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[[folder: Comic Books ]]

* A pretty popular ''{{Archie}}'' story involves one. Archie and Betty find a girl in a swamp, and take her to their friend, an old captain living in a houseboat. The girl is revealed to be an heiress, but her uncle is trying to kill her. Archie and his friends set a trap for him, luring him to the boat, planning on jumping him when he opens the door. However, the uncle decides instead to cut the lines, sending them down toward the InevitableWaterfall. [[spoiler:Of course, the gang had planned for this, and there was a cable that kept the boat from drifting ''too'' far down. Makes you wonder why the captain lived so close to a waterfall...]]
* Tempest Gale in ''[[PaperinikNewAdventures Pk2]]'' lives on a small, crappy boat.

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[[folder: Film ]]

* ''BloodWork'' (Clint Eastwood lives on one); [[spoiler:but so does the BigBad, berthed a few slips down.]]
* The Commodore in the 1980 ''Film/{{Popeye}}'' lived on a boat.
** Well, it ''is'' about sailors.
* In ''[[http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0058092/ Father Goose]]'', TheProtagonist starts out as this, but is stranded on an island and spends a fair amount of the movie trying to fix his former home.
* The undercover cop in ''HardBoiled'' lives on a yacht (which ends up the site of one of the film's gunfight set pieces).
* Lorenzo Lamas's character in ''Snake Eater'' drives a houseboat.
* ''{{Cocktail}}'': Bryan Brown lives on a yacht.
* JohnWayne in ''McQ''.
* Riggs, in at least one of the ''LethalWeapon'' movies.
* Shane Falco in ''Film/TheReplacements'' ("See that yacht over there with the satellite dish? Mine's the one next to it covered in pigeon crap.")

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[[folder: Literature ]]

* Travis [=McGee=], from the novels by John D. [=MacDonald=], lives on a houseboat called "The Busted Flush" (he won it in a poker game), Slip F-18, Bahia Mar, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. The marina is real, and maintains a plaque dedicated to the hero and his chronicler.
* John Kelly in Creator/TomClancy's ''[[Literature/JackRyan Without Remorse]]'' has a very nice boat he uses to live on when he's not on the island he rents, until he destroys it at the end as part of faking his own death.
* In JimButcher's Literature/TheDresdenFiles novel ''Literature/{{Changes}}'', Harry is living on a houseboat at the end. [[spoiler:Briefly.]]
* In JasperFforde's ''Lost In A Good Book'', Literature/ThursdayNext moves into a house-''air''boat (or should that be flying houseboat?) at the end of the book.

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[[folder: Live Action TV ]]

* The early '60s detective series ''{{Surfside 6}}'' had its heroes living on the title boat in Miami Beach (cha-cha-cha, CHA).
* ''{{Quincy}}'' lived on a boat, until the episode "Quincy's Wedding, Part 2" [[spoiler: when he arranged to sell it, because his fiancee and soon-to-be-wife Emily didn't want to live on it. ]]
* ''MiamiVice'' (Crockett had two boats, one for racing, one where he lived with his alligator).
* On ''SimonAndSimon'' Rick lives on a boat parked in A.J.'s front yard.
* ''Series/MacGyver'' lived on a houseboat for several seasons.
* Duncan [=MacLeod=] in ''Series/{{Highlander}}: The Series'' lived off and on in one of these in Paris.
* Bobby from ''{{Cougartown}}'' lives on a boat. A boat that never leaves the parking lot.
** In the second season, Jules and the others move it to the marina to surprise Bobby. [[spoiler:It promptly sinks. They do fish it back out, leaving Bobby [[StatusQuoIsGod back where he started]].]]
** At the end of the season, Bobby [[spoiler:moves into an apartment and leaves the houseboat to a depressed Travis. In the third season, Travis moved to a dorm and Bobby is back on the boat.]]
* Cody in ''Series/{{Riptide}}'' runs the series detective agency out of his boat; his partners Nick and Murray live on the boat as well.
* On the Animal Planet show ''Series/PitBoss'', main character Shorty lives on a boat. With pit bulls. It's a reality/documentary thing about a group that rescues abandoned pit bulls, so he fits the "heroic" requirement too.
* Kellerman from ''HomicideLifeOnTheStreet''. Of course his coolness got deconstructed as time went on.
* [[Series/ArrestedDevelopment GOB Bluth]] made a hearty attempt at this trope, but the boat belonged to the Bluth Company, and his residency there was one of the strings that kept him (in his mind) beholden to his brother Michael.
* [[BurnNotice Sam and Fiona]] were nearly caught snooping around on the boat belonging to the week's villains. This one's a two-fer, actually, since...
** ... the villains were a couple running various financial scams while living out of the boat precisely so they could take off on a moment's notice, and...
** ... when they were about to be caught by the villains, Sam pretended to be a guy claiming ''he'' lived on the boat in order to score with Fiona.
* A rare female example: Kate from ''Series/FairlyLegal.'' Although she admits in the first season finale that she doesn't actually sail[[spoiler: ...and in the season two premiere her boat blows up]].
* Joe and Brian accidentally sink Lowell's houseboat on ''Series/{{Wings}}''.

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[[folder: Video Games ]]

* ''VideoGame/EndlessOcean'''s base of operations for your character is the trusty ''Gabbiano''.
* ''VideoGame/{{Suikoden V}}'' has the Oboro Detective Agency, whose members live together on a small boat as both coworkers and surrogate family. This lets them pick up and go whenever they want; if the player isn't careful, this can lead to them being LostForever, courtesy of them leaving before the Prince can convince them to join his cause.

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[[folder: Web Comics ]]

* ''Webcomic/{{Derelict}}'': The main character's base of operations.

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[[folder: Western Animation ]]

* In the first season of ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender,'' Zuko lives on a small, crappy warship. Also more of an example of Houseboat Villain than HouseboatHero.
* "Hero" is questionable, but in ''The Little Wise Hen'', one of the very first DonaldDuck shorts, he lived on a houseboat. Fittingly, since he was more of an actual duck back then, so you'd think he'd live close to water.
* Once, ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'' moved to Terror Lake as part of a WitnessProtection deal in which they became The Thompsons.
--> '''Homer''': "Oh, come on, Marge. You've always wanted a house by the lake. And besides, if you don't like your neighbors, you just lift anchor and sail away!"
--> '''The Simpsons''': ''laughing''
--> ''All the other houseboats sail off as quickly as possible.''

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