Hello from Colorado/Wyoming!
Me wife and I recently started seriously considering a Skoolie and are trying to sponge up as much information as possible to determine if this is a good next step! So I'll put down all the details and questions I can think of in hopes of getting some input from the pros!
Our plan at the moment would be to live in a converted bus (just us two for now) for about 1-2 years and use it as a mobile office for me and a way to see more of the country! I'm a freelance TV and corporate video editor by trade and a cinematographer so my work benefits from being very portable.
We like the idea of the mobility to get to different job opportunities and contacts across the country on a whim. I also would love to get into selling stock video from our many different stops across the country. The travel and exploration is huge perk for us lifestyle wise.
We're both young and like living simply. We have several qualified friends (home builders, welders, mechanics) in the area who would love to help us convert our skoolie. We've got a family farm where we would live as we build our new home.
As far as bus we're thinking of just a standard-sized bluebird. Most likely a puller as I'm only an amateur mechanic and I've heard they are easier to learn on.
From what I've seen on this page a realistic construction goal is generally more than a year. We were hoping that 2-4 people working almost every day and several more pitching in on weekends might bring that down to 6-8 months. Any thoughts on the possibility of that?
We've heard $6,000 is enough budget for a comfortable no-frills purchase and conversion if you can find a working bus in the $1000-$1500 range. This sounds unrealistic to us so we're expecting to spend another $2000 for a total of no more than $8000. Any seat-of-the-pants estimates would be very helpful!
We think we can find a lot of cheap or free building materials in the area (including solar panels) but will need a good electrical system for keeping a desktop computer safe. A foreseeable hurdle design-wise would be creating maximum storage to bring my video equipment and my wife's instruments. We're expecting to do a lot of compromises on what we take with us haha.
Ok that's all I can think of. Looking forward to learning from those who have gone before us!