We have already witnessed many families turning to the life on wheels mainly due to the sky-rocking rent prices. The first of these stories was the couple living in a truck, and then a guy converted a school bus into a dream home! Today’s story is based along the same lines. Almost three years ago, Brian Sullivan and his wife Starla got sick of paying $1,500 per month for an apartment for which they had to work overtime. This reason, coupled with the pair’s desire to be homeowners, pushed them towards taking the “leap of faith.”
In April 2014, the couple bought an abandoned school bus for almost $2,800 and spent another $30,000 on flipping it into a comfy home for themselves and their three kids.
“The apartment was about an hour away from Brian’s work and the commute was awful,” Starla says. “He would work overtime trying to pay the rent, then he would sit in a car for three hours and we would never see him, so we decided to make a change. We pay a third of the cost now and we have money to pay off debts and student loans!”
In fact, the Sullivans revealed that they got motivated to pull this off after watching a video of a family’s unconventional home, who also lived in a bus.
“There was this one video in particular – we called them the crazy people who lived in a blue bus,” Brian says. “Yet we just kind of looked at each other and were like, ‘Do you want to live in a bus with me?’ I thought she was joking, but no she was serious. I was at work the next day and I started to realize all of these benefits like being able to be mobile and being able to move if I got a job that was 20 miles away.”
So the “Old Bertha” was the center of attention of Brian and Strala for the next year. Despite having no experience in construction or renovation; they poured their blood and sweat to make this project a success. As one would suspect, the feat was anything but easy, yet, they did manage to include all the amenities and furnishings. Ultimately, they turned a hunk of junk into a habitable house.
The layout was designed to maximize the limited space, and by clever mapping, they were able to squeeze in a full-size bed, a kitchen with an oven, a washing machine, a composting toilet and even a bath tub inside the place. Best of all, the place costs them only $500 a month which is a third of their previous rent.
“We are ridiculous people and this is a ridiculous lifestyle and it just works,” Brain said. “We now have money to eat the foods that we want and go to the places we want.”
But it’s not all a bed of roses, as living in a bus has its drawbacks.
“We have had frozen pipes, no running water, we’ve run out of propane in the middle of the night and had no heat, no hot water, we’ve lost electricity,” Starla confessed. “Whenever any of those things happen, I’m just grateful that they haven’t all happened at the same time.”
Creating enough space for a family of five is also a challenge,
“Living in a tiny space is really a test of your organisational skills and really a test of your discipline skills because you have to keep the space clean,” Brian added.
Still, the Sullivans have no plans of moving out to a conventional home, as Starla mentions,
“I don’t see us moving from the bus into anything traditional. It would be something equally ridiculous.”
You can learn more about the life of the Sullivans through their YouTube channel, where they hope to spread awareness that living in a small, unconventional space is possible.
What are your thoughts about the innovative lifestyle of the Sullivans? Comment below!