A couple are converting a $10,600 double decker bus into a home in a bid to escape their $1,400 a month rent.
Alice Keeler, 30, and Xavier Gstrein, 29, bought the 2003 model online from Northern Ireland in May.
The pair have been renting a one-bedroom flat in Brighton,England for two years and were put off buying a home by “extortionate” housing prices – so bought a bus instead.
They reckon the complete conversion will cost them more than 20,000 pounds ($23,600) – including solar panels, an eco-friendly log burner, and a compost toilet.
But they reckon they’ll save loads of cash living off the grid in the bus they have called Baloo.
Alice, a speech and language therapist for adults in neuro-rehab, said: “The idea is to get off the grid, be rent-free and have more freedom.
“Our bus will be powered by solar and we hope to grow our own veg patch.
“Hopefully with the knock-on effect of being more conscious of how much food we waste and also eating more seasonally.
“We will get quicker access to nature in order to live a slower-paced life and appreciating the things that are free for us and on our doorstep.
“Also, more freedom to continue our love of travel by either basing ourselves somewhere else with the bus or renting it out while we are away on adventures.
“It’s brilliant to repurpose a used bus that may have otherwise been scrapped and Xav and I are learning new skills together and learning things about ourselves along the way”.
Xavier, a nuclear medicine technologist and radiographer, and Alice bought the bus on May 14 this year.
They are paying for the conversion with savings and their monthly salaries.
The couple plan to convert the top deck into a space for two bedrooms as well as a chill-out and lounge area.
The bottom deck will be a kitchen, bathroom and sitting area, and Alice says she is “excited” to buy second-hand furnishings, which are not only “cheaper” but give a “quirky” feel.
Alice says the advantages of buying a bus compared to investing in the conventional housing market are “endless”.
She added: “It’s far more economical than taking out a loan for a mortgage to buy and being in debt for many years.
“Brighton is great – we have a lovely little garden and small kitchen – but it’s just expensive.
“We are currently paying 1,200 pounds a month, which is pretty reasonable if you think about it.
“But we were looking at buying a place – bearing in mind we are not on the worst wages in the world – and we swiftly realized purchasing somewhere in the Brighton and Hove area is just extortionate!”
They have been sharing their progress on their social media page @baloo_thebigbluebus.
Produced in association with SWNS.
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