Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Convert Van to Camper

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Convert Van to Camper

    I have been working with my psychology sorting out some personal issues that I had since I was little. its getting worse and it has now impacted my marriage and my social life. My psychology diagnosed me as Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). I have to admit that i was shocked as I am 46 years old and now I just learned that I have this. The more I learned about I, the more I see it. One of the things we talked about is what did I do to unwind and collect myself to continue to function as how I got this far without melting into puddle of water. Its camping, hiking , nature, etc. I sold my truck and the camper over a year ago. I was so mad, but I did not have the budget to keep it. Now, I want one back To keep the cost down, I will convert cargo van into a camper.

    With that said, I need to explore options on how I can budget for it. One way is to use some funds from 401K or get into debt for it. What would you do if you were in my shoe? I would never had thought about tapping into 401K, but it is necessary step for me to continue to function and keep my job.

    My wife has her income, so I am only going to focus on mine income. My psychology told me that I need to stop taking care of her financial needs and focus on mine. She is happy and functioning very well, and I am the one that needs help. She can start saving for her own retirement, pay her car insurance, etc. so that's what I am going to do.

    My current financial situations
    Monthly take home (after 401k 15%, Taxes, health ins, etc) is 5,500
    Mortgage 1,700
    Car Payment 265 (6,500 left, but I may force my wife to take over as its her car, not mine)
    roughly 400 a month on other things like electric bills, car ins., etc.

    On a good month, I have about 1,800 left to "play" or pay down debt.

    I am not into fancy stuff or anything, just a simple thing. Worse case, i may be looking at buying and build it all for under 20K. Much cheaper than buying a camper. I live in HOA area, so i am not allowed to stored a camper and that means storage fees. To avoid that, I can buy a Cargo van with no names or letters on it and park it on my drive way. A loop hole.

    #2
    This thread seems very strange, not sure it's not a fake? I'll bite.

    Simple answer ..... You and wife need to get on the same page financially. It's not yours and hers, it's ours.

    Also, a camper is a "TOY". You don't compromise retirement savings or borrow money for toys.
    Get a $100 tent to fill your camping needs till you can pay cash for a camper.

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by Fishindude77 View Post
      This thread seems very strange, not sure it's not a fake? I'll bite.

      Simple answer ..... You and wife need to get on the same page financially. It's not yours and hers, it's ours.

      Also, a camper is a "TOY". You don't compromise retirement savings or borrow money for toys.
      Get a $100 tent to fill your camping needs till you can pay cash for a camper.
      I agree with this 100%.

      You mention spending 20K to build the camper. Let me ask you this. How many times could you rent a camper for $20,000?

      Don't steal from your future to pay for luxuries in the present. Don't go into a bunch of debt to pay for your luxuries. If you can't afford it, you don't buy it.

      The situation with your wife is very concerning but that's a much different topic. If you want to talk about that, we'd be happy to weigh in but I'll refrain from commenting for now.

      You say you have about $1,800/month extra. You owe $6,500 on the car. So the car loan should be gone in 4 months. At that point, you'll have the $1,800 plus the $265 car payment, so roughly $2,000/month free. Save that for 10 months and then pay for the camper outright. No 401k money. No new debt. Until then, find a cheaper way to camp, such as renting a camper when needed.

      All of this assumes that you have at least a 6-month emergency fund and that you are adequately saving for retirement.
      Steve

      * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
      * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
      * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by Fishindude77 View Post
        This thread seems very strange, not sure it's not a fake? I'll bite.

        Simple answer ..... You and wife need to get on the same page financially. It's not yours and hers, it's ours.

        Also, a camper is a "TOY". You don't compromise retirement savings or borrow money for toys.
        Get a $100 tent to fill your camping needs till you can pay cash for a camper.
        I couldn't have said it any better. All of this.

        The issue with cargo van conversions is most of them cost more than they're ever worth, even if you put your own labor into it. And you're usually starting out with a clapped-out ex-commercial rig with a billion minimally-maintained miles.

        You can still buy a VW Vanagon with service life for under $20k, basically a camper ready to go. These have held their value or increased over the last 10 years, with a little TLC and smart upgrades, a lot of people turn them around for good money. Just my $0.02

        Comment


          #5
          I'm saying no to the camper.
          Get a tent as mentioned above.
          Or, go to State parks that offer cabin rentals.
          Or, do the AirBnB thing.

          The fact that you and your wife's finances and life seems separate from yours is a huge red flag.

          Brian

          Comment


            #6
            I don't think it's really that concerning for you and your wife to keep finances separate. Plenty of people do that these days. But I do agree that it doesn't make sense to go into debt for a camper. I understand that mental health is important and so finding outlets is also important. But start with day hikes or weekend camping with a tent or a hammock as other's have said. That will give you time to save for a camper. The other option is that there are forums out there where people discuss converting regular vans into something for camping. My brother is actually doing this with a toyota sienna. You can pop the back seats all out and build a platform to set into it to put sleeping pads on and storage underneath. It allows for camping when you want it, and when you just want to use it as a vehicle, you can take the platform out and put the seats back in.

            Comment


              #7
              I would first suggest that you not take financial advice from your psychologist... I'm actually surprised that a psychologist wouldn't suggest you both work together on your finances to better share the load...

              I would also suggest paying off all of your debts before buying a toy such as a camper. If you keep borrowing to put off facing poor decisions, you'll never get ahead. For periodic weekend trips in the meantime, you can rent a camper, or just use a tent, or renting a cabin, or so on. Lots of options besides spending $20k on a camper (and going further in debt to do so).

              That said.... A couple years ago my father bought & converted ahe cargo van to the camper, and he loves it -- he actually lives out of it 4 days a week, because his retirement home (he retires next Feb) is a 4hr drive away from his work. So he parks his camper van at/near the office (you can park an unmarked can like that almost anywhere), takes the train there on Tuesday, lives out of the van through Friday, and takes the train back home. Many folks think he's crazy, but he likes the simplicity & he's happy with it. All of that to say, those little conversion vans can be great.
              "Praestantia per minutus" ... "Acta non verba"

              Comment


                #8
                My birth mom is currently living in a camper van, traveling the country. It's a GMC Safari she converted herself.

                My SO and I live in a 5th wheel, on property he owns, for now. Eventually we wish to hit the road.

                So yes, make plans to live your life the way you want. But don't raid your 401k to do it, that's a bad plan.

                Comment

                Working...
                X