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Old 03-08-2017, 02:21 PM   #1
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WHAT ARE WE DOING??? (Florida)

We just informed our landlord that we will not be renewing our lease and will be moving out in April. Why did we tell him that?

BECAUSE WE'RE CRAZY AND HAVE DECIDED TO BUILD A SKOOLIE!!!

U + ME = US
My name is Danny and my wife is Amanda. We're both 26 and will have been married 1 year this coming Monday (03/13/2017). We currently live on the west coast of Florida. My wife has about a 50/50 split between school and work and mine is more of a 90/10 split with work taking almost all of my time.



Anywho, we have decided to move out of our awesome apartment close to downtown and into a 40ft(?) school bus along with our two dogs (Ophelia | Marty McFly) and rabbit (Walter). Oh yeah, we don't have a bus yet, nor the money to buy one. Yay! Go us!

The Man/Woman With The Plan
Here's what we're thinking about doing:

1. Move out of our apartment and into my mother in law's house with 4 women, two dogs, and one cat. We'll be living in a converted porch and all sharing one bathroom. I don't see how this could go wrong at all! Hopefully we'll only be here for around 3 months tops.

2. Pool money from selling two of my old cars, left over work bonus money and our tax refund to buy a bus. We're hoping to spend around $5k-$6k on a bus. Fortunately we have a couple businesses locally that sell school busses so we won't have to travel far.

3. Register the bus as an RV and park it in my mother's backyard until it's done. Hopefully we'll be living in her house during that time, but if not we'll be sleeping in the bus (shhh!). Her house is going through a major remodel so we can't live in it currently.


Are we crazy for doing this??? Our families sure think so! To be honest, we think so too! We're super scared actually! We just have to keep reminding ourselves that we have God and our families there to help and back and support us. The next 2 years will be amazing and terrible at the same time (terribly amazing?), but I'm confident we can make this happen.
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Old 03-08-2017, 02:49 PM   #2
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Your family members are correct. You are indeed both quite insane. But then, we're all mad here...so...WELCOME TO THE MADHOUSE !!!

And this calls for one of my all-time favorite quotes...

But I donít want to go among mad people," Alice remarked.
"Oh, you canít help that," said the Cat: "weíre all mad here. Iím mad. Youíre mad."
"How do you know Iím mad?" said Alice.
"You must be," said the Cat, "or you wouldnít have come here.Ē

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Alice in Wonderland
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Old 03-08-2017, 02:50 PM   #3
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You're using student loan money to buy a bus?
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Old 03-08-2017, 03:08 PM   #4
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You're using student loan money to buy a bus?


'Borrowing' might be a better word. Once we get our tax refund in a two weeks, that money's going back for the student loan.


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Old 03-08-2017, 03:10 PM   #5
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WHAT ARE WE DOING??? (Florida)

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'Borrowing' might be a better word. Once we get our tax refund in a two weeks, that money's going back for the student loan.


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I should probably change that 'student loan' to just tax refund. Don't wanna give the wrong idea!


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Old 03-08-2017, 03:26 PM   #6
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No problem Danny. I just got the impression, there's got to be a better way of financing your dreams. Remember, CASH IS KING.........most of the time.
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Old 03-08-2017, 03:35 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Tango View Post
Your family members are correct. You are indeed both quite insane. But then, we're all mad here...so...WELCOME TO THE MADHOUSE !!!

And this calls for one of my all-time favorite quotes...

But I donít want to go among mad people," Alice remarked.
"Oh, you canít help that," said the Cat: "weíre all mad here. Iím mad. Youíre mad."
"How do you know Iím mad?" said Alice.
"You must be," said the Cat, "or you wouldnít have come here.Ē

Lewis Carroll,
Alice in Wonderland


HA! It was a spot on quote if ever there was one!


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Old 03-08-2017, 04:19 PM   #8
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Love your ideas.. but wow tight timelines.. I would not want to be under that pressure and be forced to spend more for a bus just so you can get it quicker as opposed to findind one on auction taking your time.. (I went the dealer route as i wanted / needed a bus quick last year).. I have a great bus.. just paid more than I would have if i researched and took my time..

I go between st pete downtown and columbus ohio all the time.. (have an apt in st pete downtown).. so if you ever want to meet up for a bite to eat or just talk busses....

-Christopher
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Old 03-08-2017, 04:31 PM   #9
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Love your ideas.. but wow tight timelines.. I would not want to be under that pressure and be forced to spend more for a bus just so you can get it quicker as opposed to findind one on auction taking your time.. (I went the dealer route as i wanted / needed a bus quick last year).. I have a great bus.. just paid more than I would have if i researched and took my time..

I go between st pete downtown and columbus ohio all the time.. (have an apt in st pete downtown).. so if you ever want to meet up for a bite to eat or just talk busses....

-Christopher


Well the timeline is pretty flexible since we're living with our families. They're more of our 'personal goals', where we'd like to be at certain points on time. I feel like I might have skipped some info in my original post. We're planning on this taking about a year at least. 3 months with my mother in law til we get the bus and the rest with my mother while working on the bus.

But where can we go for the bus auction???


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Old 03-08-2017, 04:40 PM   #10
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I know theres a thread here somewhere that lists the major auction sites.. most bus auctions are online bidding.. the busses are all over the USA.. not saying you have to do it that way.. or you may not find the bus you want.. its another avenue and option that can potentially save you some money...

you can try seeking the forum for govdeals, public surplus, 422sales, onlinepros, those are the big ones that sell off busses as schools want to unload them.. someone made up a nice thread with the web address for auction sites, i just cant remember the name of the forum thread,
-Christopher
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Old 03-08-2017, 04:44 PM   #11
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Thanks for the heads up! We're still big noobs with this whole Skoolie thing so any and all tips/suggestions help.


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Old 03-08-2017, 05:23 PM   #12
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We are still paying off Roxy's student loans from 6 years ago.
I couldn't imagine if she'd used the money for $%^ like buses.
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Old 03-08-2017, 06:25 PM   #13
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We're hoping to spend around $5k-$6k on a bus.
you can probably get the bus for half of that.

Welcome and have fun
Student loans = no no no avoid !

when r we having the next Florida event ?
And can someone find me a freaking bus/van plz
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Old 03-08-2017, 06:29 PM   #14
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If in FL and wanting to spend that on a bus, come look at mine I've got for sale. Its a really nice bus, well equipped.
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Old 03-08-2017, 06:32 PM   #15
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I know theres a thread here somewhere that lists the major auction sites.. most bus auctions are online bidding.. the busses are all over the USA.. not saying you have to do it that way.. or you may not find the bus you want.. its another avenue and option that can potentially save you some money...

you can try seeking the forum for govdeals, public surplus, 422sales, onlinepros, those are the big ones that sell off busses as schools want to unload them.. someone made up a nice thread with the web address for auction sites, i just cant remember the name of the forum thread,
-Christopher


And let us know next time you're in St. Pete! We'd definitely do lunch and would love to pick your brain. Lol.


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Old 03-08-2017, 06:38 PM   #16
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And let us know next time you're in St. Pete! We'd definitely do lunch and would love to pick your brain. Lol.


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if the home remodeling involves contractors and inspectors, keep the bus use a secret.
you might even not want the bus onsite until the inspectors are not coming around any more.
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Old 03-08-2017, 08:19 PM   #17
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And let us know next time you're in St. Pete! We'd definitely do lunch and would love to pick your brain. Lol.


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I'll be back there in a couple days... I had planned to be there tomorrow but I needed to hold some business meetings in ohio a couple days longer..

then I plan to be in st pete 2-3 weeks (or maybye longer) .. I do have a site in Orlando that im working on some over the next couple weeks..

one of my busses is down there in st pete.. we can get it out if you like.. (I have it out often).

-Christopher
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Old 03-08-2017, 08:30 PM   #18
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And let us know next time you're in St. Pete! We'd definitely do lunch and would love to pick your brain. Lol.
If you're going after the info in Christopher's brain, you'll need more than a 'pick'.........better bring one of those big ol' honking snow shovels to get all that knowledge out.

The compilation thread you're looking for is in the 'Classified' forum, in the 'non-affiliated buses' thread, page 151, in a post by 'ourmefa'. I'm sure the technology exists to click and drag a link to it, but I'm a technological dinosaur......my forelimbs are too short and my brain is too extinct to grasp it.
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Old 03-09-2017, 01:36 AM   #19
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I admire your confidence and excitement.

Can it be done as you are planning? Absolutely!

Will it be done as you are planning? Absolutely not!

You will find life happens a lot as you go down this road. Unexpected road blocks, detours, and speed bumps will happen. Plan for them so you won't get disheartened, disillusioned, and despondent.

There are a lot of buses for sale out there. Try not limit your search to your end of the country. Through a really wide net out there to find the bus you really want. Going out west to find a bus with tinted glass, white roof, big HP, and luggage compartments will pay off in the long run. So what if it costs you $2K to go out and drive it back to FL. If the total cost is about what you budgeted it is well worth the effort.

I assume you will be trying to do most of the work yourself using the most affordable materials as possible. Spending more for some stuff at the front end will save huge in the out years. Taking the time to pull down the ceiling panels and insulation so you can put better insulation and thermal breaks to keep it cooler in the hot months and warmer in the cool months is one of those do it right the first time sort of projects.

Be creative about finding sources for your materials. You would be amazed at what you can find for sale for cheap or for free in CL listings.

And since you are obviously going to be close to other family members, utilize them as you tear things apart and put things back together.

One thing I suggest to all new convertors is once the seats are out and before you start the conversion, throw some air mattresses in with the Coleman stove and cooler and take the bus out for some long weekends. Lay your floor plan out with painter's tape and cardboard walls. You will be able to determine what will work and what won't work with our design.

This time of the year there are usually RV shows. Go to one or more and tour through all of the different sizes and types of RV's. There are only so many ways in which you can package a bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, and living room when you have a space that is less than 300 sq ft.

Don't be shy about asking questions, particularly if you find a bus you want. You may think it is the best thing out on the road and it might actually be a great bus. But several of us on here can take one look at the spe'c's and the price and tell you whether it is a pick or a pass. The last thing any of us on here would like to see is for you to spend your $$$ only to have it turn into a disaster for you.

Good luck and keep us posted as to your progress.
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Old 03-09-2017, 01:51 AM   #20
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Here are some western buses you may want to consider:

1994 Blue Bird – 13UB157 | Western Bus Sales
International 1993 AMTRAN
GILLIG 1968 C190-12 I guarantee you will not find another one like this one in FL. Or it is highly unlikely you would find one like it in FL.
Blue Bird 1990 All American
1989 Blue Bird TC – 72 Passenger – Canyon State Bus Sales
https://showroom.auction123.com/rwc_...oup_tucson_bus
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