Skoolies are the perfect solution for nomads who want something close to a permanent home but not quite.
Skoolies are old school buses that have been fixed up to your liking and work like mobile homes.
If you like to move around and go far, you should get a skoolie.
The average school bus is between 20 and 45 feet long, which is about 245 to 300 square feet.
These cars are big enough to hold the things you need for everyday life.
There are beds, a kitchen, running water, a bathroom, and a place to hang out. Also, skoolies are becoming more popular. These mobile homes can be used by people of all ages.
Skoolie Conversion Process
Changing a school bus into a mobile home is a challenge you can take on if you like getting your hands dirty and working on your own projects.
The process of conversion, on the other hand, takes a lot of work.
It will take you a few months to finish the project and get your skoolie running well.
The first step is to take out the seats so there is enough room to work.
Then, depending on what you want, you may need to raise the roof or change the floors to make it look more like a home.
By raising the ceiling, air flow and ventilation will be better.
You can now work on the amenities by yourself or with the help of a professional.
The process is hard, especially when it comes to plumbing and putting in gas lines.
Putting in an HVAC is a good, but not necessary, thing to do because it makes it more comfortable.
Advantages of the Skoolie Conversion Process
It’s a do-it-yourself project that lets you design the inside of the skoolie. You can also add details like RV wood stoves, wood countertops, and tiled showers to the bus.
Solid: The bodies of school buses are made to be strong. Because they can carry kids and are strong, your skoolie will be fine if something goes wrong.
Easy repairs: If your bus needs fixing, you can take it to one of the shops near you. Also, it’s easy to find both new and used parts at repair shops.
Skoolies are affordable because you can buy them at auctions all over the country. You can also search online on sites like Facebook or Craigslist for less than $7000, depending on how good you are at negotiating.
Easy to get rid of trash. Either a compost toilet or a regular toilet works fine for the toilet. The compost toilet separates solid waste from urine, which makes it easier to get rid of. A standard bathroom, on the other hand, will cost more because you have to connect pipes to the grey water tank.
Disadvantages of the Skoolie Conversion Process
Time-consuming: If you do it yourself, converting that school bus will take a lot of time and energy. Before you can understand the conversion process, it will take some time.
Costly: The conversion process is expensive, and you will need to spend money on most, if not all, buildings. Costly materials may be needed to turn the bus into a home.
When you do this as a do-it-yourself project, you need to know a lot about building and construction. Don’t forget to do the woodwork that the skoolie needs. To fix problems with your plumbing and electricity, you also need to know how to use tools.
Lack of parking: It’s hard to find places to camp because some RV parks don’t let skoolies in. To get around this problem, build a skoolie that can live on its own and has everything you need to park almost anywhere.
Can I Buy a Skoolie?
Yes, a skoolie could be useful if you have decided to travel around the country for the rest of your life.
But there are two ways to go about buying a skoolie.
One is to buy a skoolie that is already made, which will cost you more than $35,000.
The other option is to buy a bus and change it yourself. Depending on how you do it, this could cost anywhere from $5,000 to $30,000.
It could take you months or even years to get your skoolie ready and running.
So here are some ways to save money while doing DIY projects.
For wood, you could use old pallets, which are cheap and useful.
Go to stores that sell materials that have been taken from old buildings.
Put in a solar system to save money on electricity costs.
If you want to save money on repairs and maintenance, don’t buy an old bus. Instead, buy a new one. A new bus will also make sure that your mobile home lasts for a long time.
Don’t rush to get the projects done. Take your time. When you’re nervous while shopping, you might buy things you don’t need.
Make a list of everything you need to buy, and take that list with you when you go shopping.
Buy things that can handle extreme weather, whether it’s too hot or too cold.
Do most of the work yourself so you don’t have to pay someone else to do it. You will save some money that way.
What Are The Benefits Of Living In A Skoolie?
There are some good things about living in a skoolie, such as;
1. Spacious Than Vans
A van has less space than a bus. You have more room to work with when you change the bus.
You can divide the space into different rooms, giving you a feeling of privacy.
With so much room, you can have a full kitchen, bathroom, wood-burning stove, living room, fridge or freezer, and even a big-screen TV.
2. Permanent Home
With real estate prices going up all the time, a skoolie can be a simple way to own a permanent home.
You don’t have to drive your skoolie all over the place. Instead, you can try a permanent parking spot.
Also, if you live in a skoolie, you won’t need as much money for a down payment as you would for a house.
3. Traveling With Your Home
When you go to different parts of the country, you miss things that are back home.
Nothing is as nice as being able to take your home with you when you travel.
It’s amazing to be able to go to other places and see amazing things, then come back to the comfort of your own home.
4. Can Fit Families
With the extra space in the skoolie, the kids can have an extra bed.
The parents can have their own room so they can be alone.
Couples can live comfortably in a van, but when they have more children, they need to move up to a skoolie.
5. Designing It to Your Liking
The skoolie is like a blank canvas on which you can paint your dream home.
You can make that skoolie into your dream home by adding all the things you want.
Give the inside and outside the style you want and a finish that will make other people want to copy it.
Material used on commercial tracks is used to make school buses, which makes them strong and long-lasting.
The frame is made of steel tubing with a steel panel covering that makes it stronger. The outside is made of corrugated steel.
In addition, most school buses have a diesel engine that serves their business needs.
What Are The Disadvantages Of Living In a Skoolie?
Even though living in a skoolie might sound like a dream come true, there are some bad things about it.
Some of the problems that could happen are:
1. Conversion Process is Costly
It might not cost much to buy an old school bus.
But it’s not cheap to turn it into a place to live.
The conversion process will cost you between $10,000 and $40,000, depending on the details and design.
Skoolies are bigger, and more space means more things to put in it, which means more money.
2. Fueling Up
Old buses are not very good for the environment, and they also use a lot of gas.
Because of how big a skoolie is, it will use a lot of gas.
As a result, the number of times you stop at a gas station will go up as you travel around the country.
3. Regular Maintenance
If you don’t want to buy a new bus, be ready to take care of the skoolie’s regular maintenance.
The school bus must be for sale for a reason. Most of the time, it’s because of problems with how it works or how it’s built.
Before you spend all your money on making the inside of your skoolie look great, make sure it runs well.
Then, take the bus to a professional to make sure it runs well.
It would be bad if your skoolie broke down a long way from home.
4. Driving Licence
It may seem easy to get a licence for your skoolie, but it’s harder than it sounds.
Also, you have to have a different kind of driver’s licence than the normal one.
Lastly, you have to take some classes to get a licence before you can move around in your mobile home.
Driving a bus is not the same as driving a car.
The bus is very big and may not be able to fit down some narrow roads. This means that you may not be able to go everywhere you want to.
5. Difficult Parking
The worst thing about skoolies is that they are hard to park.
Most campgrounds are not good places for school buses to park.
Depending on how big your skoolie is, this may limit where you can go because you don’t want to miss parking spots.
How Do You Insulate a Skoolie?
After you buy your skoolie, you should think about insulation so you don’t have to run the engine all night to stay warm.
On the market, there are many types of insulation, such as spray foam, pallet wood, XPS boards, mineral wool, and sheep wool.
Most heat is lost through the roof, floor, walls, and windows.
So, you need to think about the R-value per inch when choosing the insulation material.
R-value is a way to measure how well a 2D barrier stops heat from moving through it.
Here are some things you can do to insulate your stole:
Find out how much insulation your skoolie needs. Make sure the insulation you buy fits your budget, the weather where you’re going, and where you want to put it.
Take out your floor to see the metal underneath. The floor cover on some buses is made of rubber or wood, and sometimes it gets damaged. Get the right tools for the job to make things easier. Once the floors are exposed, take your time and cover any floor openings. Don’t let any air in.
Add a thin layer of wood to make a thermal break instead of putting the insulation in directly.
You can use expanded polystyrene foam (EPS), polyisocyanurate foam (ISO), or extruded polystyrene foam as floor insulation (XPS). Choose one that is within your budget. You can use glue or something heavy to hold the foam in place when you attach it. Don’t use screws because it will make more holes.
Insulating your skoolie’s walls and ceiling. Fiberglass, wool, wood, spray foam, and rigid foam are all materials that can be used. Before insulating, the walls secure all the wires so they don’t have to do the same work twice. How you install something will depend on your budget and how well you can do it yourself.
Last, the windows need to be insulated. The windows on a skoolie are big, so heat will escape from them the fastest.
When it comes to keeping warm, the skoolie is like a big metal cage.
Keeping heat in a metal structure isn’t easy, so you need to find the best way to do it.
When you are insulating the ceiling, think about how loud it will be when it rains.
So use an insulator that doesn’t let sound through. Depending on where you are, the weather will be different.
Make sure your skoolie can keep heat in or out as needed.
As it was a few years ago, owning a skoolie is no longer seen as a hippie thing to do.
Instead, they will live in a skoolie, which is a real, permanent home that costs less than putting down a deposit on a house.
Skoolies are big enough to fit beds for your kids, but they also have a separate room for you and your partner.
You can also travel all over the country without leaving your house.