Rock climbers' DIY van, $15k tiny home, leads to freeing nomadic lifestyle
Jess and Shawn researched, saved, planned, and planned before building out their gorgeous and super functional approximately $15k tiny home, a Ram Promaster 3500 van conversion. It took eight months of weekend building. In addition to their build cost, they pay a $400 per month van payment. Their total cost of living is about $2,000 monthly, including insurance for their vehicle and belongings.
"Most of the things we hear negative about van life when you go on YouTube and listen to people be like, "vanlife is not just Instagram pictures and beautiful scenery and whatever.'
We watched those in planning and wanted to know what the negatives are before so we can solve it. What are the cruxes and what's are beta to solve...
The biggest complaints from people are always like where to shower, where to go to the bathroom.
That seemed like survival to me. We have to have it if we're living in it."
—Jess & Shawn, @cruxandbeta
Unlike other nomads, they don't currently work on the road. They lived in their van and worked for six months in one place to save up for their nomadic life, putting away as much as they could. Now, they live nomadically full-time with their two dogs and cat, going from one rock climbing locale to another.
Inside their amazing $15k tiny home
Jess and Shawn incorporated as many homey creature comforts into their DIY van conversion as possible, like having a seating area for relaxing and hosting friends over for dinner. Of course, they had to get extra creative to make this happen. For instance, they created a custom Murphy bed that folds up to reveal the living area.
During the design/build phase, they prioritized creating a fully functional tiny home. So that meant maximizing every centimeter to allow room for a bathroom, complete with a shower and composting toilet. Unlike larger homes on wheels, they have to move the toilet when the shower is in use. This is an inconvenience they're willing to take on because of what their nomadic lifestyle opens up for them—freedom to live life on their own terms, outdoor adventure, and new friends.
Another top feature of their DIY $15k tiny home includes an insulated cab that helps to keep their entire space cool, especially important for their pets. Their spacious closet with easily accessible hanging space is true luxury in a compact 2019 Ram Promaster 3500 van conversion or any tiny house for that matter.
Follow Jess and Shawn on Instagram: @cruxandbeta
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