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Old 07-09-2021, 07:45 PM   #41
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We just built it ourselves. $6k for the base EB van, $6k for the Fiberine 'camper' top, and then customized to our needs / likes. We have seating for 4 and actual beds for 3, along with a huge kitchen counter, great storage, and swivel seats! The only complaints my wife has is that it is too tall (thanks weldtec!) and how small our water supply is.
Following a similar path ourselves. Bought a plain cargo van with the engine and options we wanted, Fiberine top, 4x4 conversion, and building the interior to our own tastes.

It's been spendy, but nowhere near 70k.
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Old 07-09-2021, 11:38 PM   #42
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I work in an industry that constantly blows me away seeing how much money people make. There are lots of smart people out there that rake it in....Quite honestly if you have to ask how to afford a 70k van then a 70k van is simply not in your budget and not if even worth considering... and definitely don’t pull a HELOC for a 145k revel. The stress will kill you defeating the whole point of the van. Live within your means in all aspects of life and if that means loving a 30k van then go that route... believe me...there are a TON of people that scratch their heads wondering how people can afford a 30k van. I’ve seen some bad ass cheaper rigs that allow you to do the same thing as some more expensive ones.... I also think patients will prevail. We will see a huge influx of inventory when this #vanlife bull shit subsides. Best of luck!! I hope you end up with a rig you love one day.
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Old 07-10-2021, 03:39 PM   #43
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There is a funny line from a movie (Beerfest) that applies here:

"If you have to ask big man, you can't afford it."

In all seriousness though, several others have mentioned this before, hard work and proper prioritization of your efforts is how you do it. I have 2 buddies and myself who would all be considered millennials that had or have sweet vans. The common themes are success in the work place, doing part of the work yourself, and separating it out into chunks. It is a lot harder to drop $70k on a van all at once rather than 4-5 chunks of $15k.
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Old 07-13-2021, 08:25 AM   #44
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Interesting thread here so I decided to give my take and experience.
I retired as a CPA 12 years ago on my 47th birthday. Why? Because working as a summer kayak and nature guide was what I knew I wanted to do and not spending 14 hours a day working. I started saving money as soon as I graduated college, and I worked and paid for that, no one has given me a dime in my life. I also invested well and never bought anything I believed was a useless posession such as watches, jewelry, big TVs or even a home. To me none of that shit was worth anything. The only thing I've spent money on in my life were experiences, travel, & really good wine and food.
When I was diagnosed with terminal cancer two years ago I didn't have a problem at all with that because I've lived my life doing what I wanted and spent the prior ten years doing EXACTLY what I wanted. What a regret it would have been to never experience that. I was given six months to live and 99.5% of folks with my rare cancer (NUT carcinoma) never see five years, a total of two individuals out of 400 ever diagnosed have survived. I'm going to be the third! (I hope)
So, all I'm trying to say is spend your money on what you want. Plan for the best but always know life gets shitty for everyone at some point.
And btw, after feeling like absolute shit the past two years I'm planning my next road trip for October till ....whenever I feel like coming home. I'm 59 and young and I don't care what anyone thinks about me even though I am truly a good guy.
Maybe I'll see you on the dirt road someday

Peace,
Dave
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Old 07-13-2021, 08:30 AM   #45
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...So, all I'm trying to say is spend your money on what you want. Plan for the best but always know life gets shitty for everyone at some point.
And btw, after feeling like absolute shit the past two years I'm planning my next road trip for October till ....whenever I feel like coming home. I'm 59 and young and I don't care what anyone thinks about me even though I am truly a good guy.
Maybe I'll see you on the dirt road someday

Peace,
Dave
Dave, it sounds like you had a great philosophy before your diagnosis, and have maintained your philosophy even afterwards. Congratulations on kicking cancer's ass, and I'm sure you'll enjoy your next road trip more than any of us can imagine.




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Old 07-13-2021, 10:59 AM   #46
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Dave, it sounds like you had a great philosophy before your diagnosis, and have maintained your philosophy even afterwards. Congratulations on kicking cancer's ass, and I'm sure you'll enjoy your next road trip more than any of us can imagine.




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+1. Great attitude and something from which we all can learn. Wish you the best Dave.
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Old 07-13-2021, 03:52 PM   #47
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I'm only going to contribute by saying, I've enjoyed and am encouraged by this thread. A lot of smart and wise comments that were handled well in the way they have been expressed. An all too rare combination these days that deserves recognition.
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Old 07-14-2021, 07:43 AM   #48
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WhitH,
I couldn't agree more, its nice to have a real discussion and not just rants online, that's why I rarely post. This forum is different.

Thank you BroncoHauler & Marret for your comments, much appreciated.

I actually cringed after I posted my comment yesterday thinking I may derail this thread. I certainly didn't mean too but it struck a nerve. I always thought, always, since I was a kid that I was different because I just did what I wanted and knew what was right. I've always gotten along well with everyone however they all think I'm a bit weird. I kinda like that !��

I've been so-called "successful" in my professional life and enjoyed it, I just knew what I'd enjoy more 12 years ago. In 2015 i bought my 2004 E350 Sportsmobile for $65k cash. I've enjoyed every single day driving it, even the days I was broken down in the middle of nowhere(Actually I've enjoyed those more)

I live in Provincetown MA, at the tip of Cape Cod surrounded by ocean and the Cape Cod National Seashore NP. It's a town of 2,500 year round (55,000 summer) individuals, this amazing group of artists, writers, fishermen, drag queens and other lovable and loving misfits like myself.

If anyone ever finds themselves out here April to November then hit me up, I'll be traveling during the winter. I'll show you some amazing places on both land and sea. I've even got a spot for you to park your Van and plug in for free, and that beats paying at least $400 a night for a room in the summer.
Thanks to you all.

Peace,
Dave
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Old 07-14-2021, 07:56 AM   #49
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I actually cringed after I posted my comment yesterday thinking I may derail this thread. I certainly didn't mean too but it struck a nerve. I always thought, always, since I was a kid that I was different because I just did what I wanted and knew what was right. I've always gotten along well with everyone however they all think I'm a bit weird. I kinda like that !��
I'm totally glad you contributed. The title of the thread was 'How?' but you and several others have gone past the how to the 'Why'. Why we choose to prioritize what we spend vs. how we got it is always fascinating to me. So many people get in the rut of living life like everyone else.

#Vanlifers, and by this I mean people who choose to live in a van, off grid, digital nomads, etc. etc. (not the social media #vanlife fad folks), mostly all question the normal pattern of school, job, house and kids, die. There is more than one way to live your life and sometimes there are BIG reasons!

Good stuff Dave.
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Old 07-14-2021, 01:14 PM   #50
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How? No idea how you start in this hobby now. There is no way in hell I could be part of this hobby if I wouldn’t have purchased everything I did before the vanlife hashtag got invented. Now all the manufacturers realized they could raise their prices to the ungodly amounts they are now. I feel sorry for the average Joe that wants to get involved with this hobby. Honestly, it’s not reality for someone like me.

I know all the van related companies are getting while the getting is good, but imho, they have all exceeded reality with their pricing. Are the products good? For the most part and that helps justify the price increases, but seriously the pop top I bought in 2013 has more than doubled in price now. Has the performance or options doubled? Possibly, but not from I’ve seen. Are they better now? Definitely! Enough to justify twice the price? I can’t understand how, but I am simple minded potato head. So maybe I’m too dense to understand.
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