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Old 02-05-2015, 02:35 PM   #1
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Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Ashland, WI
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Question Dreaming and planning for my future Bus

Hi all,
I fell in love with the idea of a Skoolie over pintrest this past summer, but my love of tiny homes sprouted long ago. I am graduating this spring and want to buy and start constructing my skoolie. But I have one major concern- money. I will have $20000 in loans that need to be paid back- and the outright cost of buying and converting a bus.
How did you all do this? Did you just save and do it all once you had a good base of money? But what about paying rent? Isn't that counter productive? I'm so confused and concerned by this.
My other question is, are there any blogs or books out there that have a tutorial from start to finish? Buying the bus, coming up with a floor plan, tearing apart the bus and then insulating it, and so on.

Any help or suggestions would be so appreciated!!!
Thank you!
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Old 02-05-2015, 04:03 PM   #2
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Location: Eustis FLORIDA
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Year: 1992
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Fist- welcome to the forum. Its great to have somewhere to talk buses.
Here is what I think. I wouldn't buy anything major if I owed that kind of money.
Also- there isn't really any one source like a book or anything on bus building. Its sort of a run-what-ya-brung thing. The individuality of it is a big draw for many of folks.

I bought mine for cheap and I'll put money into it as I can afford to.
This isn't something I'd borrow money to do though. I'd say work hard at whatever you went to school for and when you get some money saved up then buy a bus.
I bought a house and property then bought the bus. I can rent the house out for money while I live in the bus. I don't have any rent because I bought the place outright for cash. 46k got me a block house on a big lot. I can park my bus here, too.
Thank goodness I structured my life around not having any debt. At 35, I own prett much everything outright and even though I've been laid off for two years now with no work, my world is still turning and I'm not in any emergency or needing help.
In two years, my better half has paid down nearly ten grand in student loan debt. She's halfway there with another ten to go.
Getting out of debt first will also mean that when you can afford the bus, you will also be FREE and can go anywhere in it without the burden of the debt keeping you somewhere you may not like to be.
Thats my 2cents on it.
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Old 02-06-2015, 08:09 AM   #3
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Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: southwest lowsyana
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Year: 1988
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bought a bus for $1200. bartered almost everything i have put in it. few things like paint and screws and solar had to be purchased new as i could afford. should be done by spring.

example: paid $100 for everything i could use out of wrecked rv. traded tiller for tires. bummed carpet and linoleum for free. went to flea markets and garage sales. found used furniture for average $20 a piece. biggest expense was new stuff at bestbuy open box clearance, $120, discontinued freezer at bestbuy $115. solar $800, batteries $420. rest was trivial. gonna trade lawn mower for guy to build rear deck. will trade stereo for store credit at pawn shop. will trade house furniture for exterior paint, etc:
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Old 02-06-2015, 01:37 PM   #4
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Southern Ohio
Posts: 45
This all depends on your idea of what a conversion will consist of. Do you want all the luxuries of home (hot water, ac, electricity ? ). All these things take time and money. Or are you happy to have a place to sleep and you will read books and use battery powered lamps?
As you have already pointed out paying rent will greatly slow this process. It will also do something else. You will get comfortable in your apartment and spend less time and money towards your goal of living on the bus. Living simply and cheaply in an unfinished conversion has a way of keeping you motivated! Just keep your goals realistic and don't spend money on thing too far in advance. Even if the deal is too good to pass up. Getting a super deal on cabinets and then not having money to insulate will stall the project. Ask me how I know :/
We live in an Amish community and I'm sure in Wisconsin you are near them too. Living simple can be done cheap without sacrificing quality of life. Just talk to the Amish
You are young...go for it now!
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