There are several perks to living in your car full-time. Perhaps the biggest bonus is that you can travel wherever you want, whenever you want. You can also save a lot of money on housing costs, and you don’t have to worry about maintaining a traditional home. Additionally, living in a van can help you get to know yourself and your surroundings in a new and different way.
There are also challenges people face when living in their car. This includes deciding on their vehicle, making the necessary modifications, handling repairs and maintenance, finding parking spaces, and earning while living in their cars. If you’re considering making the switch to van life, you can do a few things to make the transition easier.
Decide on Your Vehicle
First, you need to consider if your current vehicle is already set up for van life. If you need to make an upgrade, you have to weigh the pros and cons of purchasing a used SUV or buying a brand new van.
A used vehicle may be cheaper, but it’s often less energy-efficient and may require more repairs. On the other hand, a brand new van will have modern features and fewer maintenance issues. You may also want to purchase or rent an RV or campervan if you are looking for more space and amenities.
Handling Repairs and Maintenance
It’s important to be prepared for any repairs that may arise when living in a vehicle. Because your car will be constantly on the move, it is more likely to need maintenance and repairs than a traditional home.
There are a few things you can do to minimize the frequency of these issues. First, make sure your tires are always properly inflated so that you don’t have to worry about blowouts or flats as often. You should also give your vehicle regular check-ups from a mechanic, and invest in basic tools like wrenches and screwdrivers so that you can make minor fixes yourself if necessary.
Once you have your vehicle, it’s time to make some modifications. Most people who live in their cars do so to save money, so you don’t want to spend too much on unnecessary additions. However, there are a few things you might want to consider adding to your car to make van life more comfortable.
One of the most important things you can do is insulate your van. This will help keep you warm in the winter and cool in the summer. You can use a variety of materials for insulation, such as reflective bubble wrap, foam board, or even wool blankets.
You should also install some form of ventilation in your van. This will help with the insulation and also allow you to cook without filling your van with smoke. You can install a roof vent fan or a window fan.
Another important modification is to install a bed. This can be as simple as putting a mattress in the back of your car or building a more elaborate sleeping area. If you plan on spending a lot of time in your car, you might want to consider adding some other amenities, such as a mini-fridge, shelving, or storage bins.
When living in your car, you’ll also need to be mindful of how you store your belongings. One option is to purchase a slide-out rack, which will give you extra storage space while keeping your belongings well-organized.
Storage isn’t the only concern when living in a car; you’ll also need to think about how to cook and clean. For cooking, you may want to look into getting a portable stovetop or even a propane grill. And for cleaning, it’s best to stick with easy-to-clean items like canvas bags and washable microfiber towels.
Finally, if you plan on staying in one place for an extended period of time, you may want to consider installing basic amenities like a shower and toilet in your car. While this can be expensive and require some work, having these amenities will make life much easier for you on the road.
Find Ways to Earn a Living in Your Car
If you plan on living in your car full-time, you’ll need to find a way to make a living. This may mean getting creative with your work arrangements or looking for new ways to earn money on the road. Some effective strategies include taking on freelance work, creating an online business, and turning your car into a mobile office.
There are also many online resources that can help you make the most of living in your car. For example, sites like Workamper News and GoRVing offer tips and advice on making money while traveling and finding places to park your vehicle at night. Additionally, organizations like Vanlife Diaries provide inspiration and helpful tips for those considering switching to van life.
Whether you’re interested in saving money or desire a more nomadic lifestyle, the van life is an appealing option for many people today. With the proper planning and preparation, you can enjoy all the benefits of this unique lifestyle while overcoming the challenges that come with it.