Now that we have completed our original mission to own a house, now begins the ongoing house of making our house a nicer place to live!
Archive – 2013-2014
The decision to live fulltime in a caravan partially came out of necessity. Where we live, the rent is roughly uniform, barring shared housing – a step which we were unwilling to take.
Renting anywhere else would be just as costly as our current location. According to our research, a mortgage in many cases would actually be less than what we are currently playing in rent. For the same price, we might as well get to own something, rather than paying somebody else’s mortgage. And, let’s be honest, all letting agents are as bad as one another for maintenance – how does 5 weeks for an oven repair sound?
The problem is that we have very little left to save for a mortgage at the end of the month, this wouldn’t be a problem if we owned the property – living in someone else’s house however means that saving up for a 10% deposit + fees (roughly 15k) is difficult – and that’s putting it lightly!
We both have fairly good jobs, and take home an average wage, but we, as many others have gotten ourselves stuck in a rut and are unable to hoist ourselves out of renting and onto home ownership.
The solution (a hair-brained scheme by Chris, and later ok’d by Steph), was to sell the Rapido, de-clutter and sell what we don’t need, use what little savings we do have to buy a more modern caravan. One which we could live in until we have saved up the money. One which is insulated enough to cope with the winter ahead, and one which we could call home.
The caravan in question will need to be sturdy in order to withstand the rigours of fulltiming. After looking at some of the used caravan centres nearby, we had decided on a brand of caravan – Bessacarr. Apparently they are owned by the Swift group, so we had extended our search to include all brands within that group. We have looked at other manufacturers such as Bailey, however, the interior quality appeared flimsy and very ‘fake’. We are talking about caravans from the early 2000s, things may have improved during recent years.
Combined with an awning, this will double, if not almost triple our living space. The caravan should be well insulated and toasty warm with it’s blown air heating, the awning… I’ve read that it if it facing the sun then it should be warmer, but I’m not counting on it during the winter! However, it will provide storage space, somewhere protected to dry clothes and , if nothing else, provide you with more of a sense of ‘home’.
Money wise, we will be hoping to save as much as we can – to get n the property ladder as soon as possible. Although we will have to pay site fees, which we are budgeting for approximately £200 – £300, this does however include all of the: water, electricity, chemical toilet disposal and other waste. We will no longer pay council tax, TV license, line rental, rent, gas, electric, water – the list goes on.
It’s not all plain sailing however, there will be many challenges along the way. Despite my (extensive) research, I’m imagining it will still be a trial by fire – we need to simultaneously move out of our rented accommodation, put things into storage and move into the caravan. There is still much to find out, insurance for instance – caravan insurance is easy to find, full-timing insurance less so.
The search for the ideal caravan continues…