This house, located in Xiazhangyang, a village in the Zhejiang province in China, is real. It is located in the middle of a newly constructed Chinese highway. Structures such as these, where the tenant refuses to move to make way for a public land project, are known as “nail houses”. This situation is possible because Chinese law prohibits forceful eviction of tenants without an agreement. As a result, any homes located in the path of new highway projects, shopping center construction areas, or other public use facilities, can refuse to vacate if they feel the Chinese government has not offered them enough compensation for their home and land. In typical Chinese fashion – if you refuse to move then they will just build around you (but thankfully, not *over* you).
In the case of the Xiazhangyang nail house, demolition experts and custom home builders took down parts of the building belonging to other tenants and left just enough wall structure to support the building area owned by Luo Baogen and his wife. Luo says he refused the government offer of $41,573 plus two small building sites, because it was not enough to cover the several hundreds of thousands of yuan they said they had spent in renovating the building.
Once the lanes are painted and the highway opens, the Baogen family can expect thousands of cars to be driving by their home day and night.
Below are several examples of Chinese “nail houses”.