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Full Version: Anyone else preparing for this lifestyle in case s**t happens?
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I'm not a full time dweller in a van...not even a part timer.  More like a weekender here and there, at least for now.  I have a f/t job in finance that pays so-so okay, live in a decent apartment, have little debt, no kids, in a steady relationship for past 3 years with my current GF. 

But here's the catch.  I know that anything could change for the worst at any given time.  For the past 6 years, I had laid off from at least 3 different jobs.  Each job loss caused me to lose money, spend my savings and retirement, and have to give up lots of possessions such as furniture, etc.  I swear that no single guy should have to buy a new bed as many times as I have in a lifetime.  I've lost count, but I'm sure I've bought more than a dozen beds in my lifetime, and I'm 47 years old.  I have friends around my age that tell me they have the same mattress for past 20 years.  Unreal.  Every time I start new, I get a new job, find a new place to live, have to buy new furnture and stuff again, it's exhausting really.

That's why I recently bought a conversion van nearly 2 years ago.  I figure if s**t happens again, and chances are, it will, then I can at least have something to fall back on instead of having to crash at my sister's place like I did last time for a few months.  I really didn't like having to rely on staying at my sister's place, and that was the only one time in my life I ever had to do that.  I vowed to myself that I won't let that happen again, more out of pride and self-reliance than anything else.  I also don't want to have to share a place with multiple roommates for the sake of having a lower monthly rental cost.  The last time I did shared living space, I nearly wanted to kill a couple people, and they had to have a restraining order against me!  Long story best saved for another day. 

Even if nothing negative happens to me at the current time, at the least I'm deriving pleasure out of decking out my "mobile man cave" and turning my van into something really comfy for me to enjoy for weekend camping trips and road trips.  I pretty much have everything I need in my van short of a shower and running water sink.  I can easily go to the 24 Hour Fitness gym for such things as showering and cleaning, and I've been a member of that gym for over 20 years.  My current GF doesn't quite understand why I put as much effort into tricking out my van...if only she knew.  The way I see it, relationships come and go.  At any time in the future, given my track record of 3 divorces, I know that I might be on my own.  That's why I put time and effort into my van, and don't give any concern whether my GF thinks I'm going overboard or spending too much.  Heck, she recently bought an $1,800 Louis Voutton handbag, so she's not one to judge me on my spending on the van, haha!

I know if I were to lose my job/income and apartment, I would have to yet again give up and give away lots of stuff, especially furniture and appliances.  Oh well, that won't be the first time as I've done this more than several times in my lifetime thus far.  I will tell you though that having a van that's already fully prepped for full time living has given me a sense of peace knowing I won't be sleeping on the streets as a homeless person if times get bad.  Plus I own my van, so there's no bank payment on that.

Anyway, does any of this make sense?  Anyone else doing something similar so I don't feel like I'm wasting my time and resources?


Man, that all makes PERFECT sense to me, Casey! I can sooooo
relate to so much of wot U described there, it's not even funny! 

In my opinion, you're doing the right thing all the way around, WTG! 

I always come back to the boy scout motto... BE PREPARED!


Yup. Got sick of every company I worked for going belly up within months, having to give up everything I worked so hard for, selling my stuff for 1/10 what I paid, having to constantly relocate (not cheap) to find more work - all the while, killing my self to pay a thousand dollars every month in rent, utilities and gas, while wondering wondering if I'd have enough left over to eat for the week after taxes.
I've been VD'ing for nearly 2 yrs now and have no desire to rejoin the no-win system.
I think once you give it a shot, you'll never want to go back.

p.s. to the gf: "The van was here before you, and it will be here long after you're gone."

 Was visiting my parents a few years ago (near X-mas) when there was a huge wind storm. Well a big tree got blown down and took out the power lines feeding the whole mountain. I just turned on my furnace and was snug as a somewhat disreputable bug. Aside from the lack of internet, it was hardly disruptive.. though thousands of others couldn't say the same. ..Willy.
Thanks guys for your support.  You are pretty much the only people I can chat with about this topic.  Can you imagine me trying to chat with my coworkers about this?  They would think I'm one step from the deep end.  I wouldn't even talk about this with my family and relatives, for they too would think I have some loose screws.  What has prepared me thus far is my having to declutter my life a few years ago out of necessity.  I was studying the topic of decluttering one's life which includes physical possessions and mental baggage.  After giving away and throwing out over 70% of all my property at one point a few years ago, this really made me realize what's important and what's not.  Without trying to sound spiritual, decluttering my life also helped to bring positive energy into my life, because all that clutter kept positive energy from reaching me in the past.  Now things are actually pretty good in my life, not perfect, but pretty decent overall. No major complaints.  But then again, I've been living with anxiety with the fear that I may only be 2 or 3 paychecks away from being homeless if I lose my job and can't find work again for a prolonged period of time.  I have personal friends who are several years older than me, and they already know what it's like to have prolonged unemployment.  I fear that the same will happen to me in the not too distant future.  Hence, I prepare, and prepare, and prepare for what I think may happen.  As the saying goes, hope for the best, but prepare for the worst.  Those are words I live by, especially nowadays.  
Oh man, if I could really get ready for the s hitting the fan, I would have diesel. Home heating oil a plenty in NE if the grid goes down. I live with a man who talks apocalypse a lot.
Frickinducky, is he one of those "preppers" like on the TV show preparing for the worst with a bomb shelter and thousands of pounds of food and water?
Yes, having my van fitted out for livability is a tremendous comfort to me.  In retrospect, that may have been one of the important but subconscious things that led me to purchase and improve it.  On one occasion, I "had to" spend a few days and nights in it while fulfilling my work obligations as though everything was business as usual.  It worked perfectly, giving me the distance and sense of autonomy I needed to begin to work through a rough spot in my long-term relationship.  (It was, however, a tad hot for sleeping in late May in Texas.)

preppers anticipate loosing the job.   thats the worst case usually.  
Hi Caseyc,

I understand what you mean. We bought the van for p/t travelling and so I was very surprise when I felt a sense of security I really didn't anticipate. You see I am not able to work any more, my husband is the only bread winner. It was always in the back of my mind that if something was to happened to him I'd be in trouble. Well that feeling is now gone, thanks to our house-on-wheel. It feels good doesn't it?

Take care and I hope things keep on going your way.

Blue skies.

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