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21-YEAR OLD trades Apartment in Seattle for LIFE ON ROAD in SPRINTER VAN

21-YEAR OLD trades Apartment in Seattle for LIFE ON ROAD in SPRINTER VAN

♫Music Playing♫ Hi, I’m Matt Sanda and this is my van Ruby. I just wanted to adventure more and save on rent. Living in West Seattle paying
twenty six hundred a month for a condo didn’t really appease me so I decided to
get a van and completely cut that expense out. I found Ruby on Craigslist.
That whole process took me about, give or take, a year. Looking every day at various
vans. Going from Sportsmobiles up to Sprinter vans, non built out, built out.
I chose to buy on that was already built out because I didn’t necessarily have the time to build one out and I didn’t really know what I needed. I was in the boat
between like getting a Unimog, just like a Sportsmobile or Sprinter van because I knew that the van, or whatever I was going to get, was going to be my home for an extended
amount of time. So I wanted one to fit my needs and after a lot of research I
found one. Negotiated a great price. Probably would have come out to the same as building one out. If I were to do it again I would have just bought the shell, put an air mattress in the back, and slowly built it as I went along. ♫Music Playing♫ So this is Ruby. She’s a 2006 Dodge 2500
Sprinter van. Got it with the Mercedes logo on. She has 180 thousand miles and run like she’s brand new. So this is my Plasti Dip job. I would have done it 100% differently. I did it in the sun, which you’re not supposed to do. I just did it in lines just
straight from the can and it streaked really bad and gave it like this
grittiness from the heat and everything. If I were to do it different I would either just pay someone to do it or just go straight Rhino Lining, full van. The hood wasn’t in that good of shape and I was scared of little little places
rusting and just gave it more of an aggressive look with the black hood and
the black rims. Accents it quite a bit. Better than just plain white. Underneath
I got a 46 gallon fuel tank. Average like 24 miles to the gallon so almost upwards of a thousand miles a tank. It’s nice knowing that you can go that kind of
distance without having to worry about running out of gas. Come around back here this is one of the doors. We’ve got the propane heat shower. 100% the shower is
worth getting. It’s amazing. It’s good for cleaning off gear if it’s salty or if you
have muddy bikes or if you just want to take a shower. It’s a little one-pound tank. If you’re running sometimes if it’s hot enough in the van it’ll heat up the water and you
won’t have to run the heater at all, but that will last, give or take, three months.
How you set this up is you got the little quick disconnect fitting and then you
come over here, slide it underneath, hook it in, turn the propane on. Turn the water on, have it prime. Hit the switch. You got a shower. You’ve got different different nozzles so
you can clean off your van if you even want to. All right, it’s really hot right
now. It does it’s job well and then always make
sure you turn off that spark or else you’ll be driving and you’ll hear a spark and it’s
kind of sketchy cause it might burn down your van. Then all
you do is just undo the disconnector, have it spray you in the face, and wind it back
up and hang it up. Shut the propane off. That’s ideal too. Got a big seven foot deep
garage. This is 33 inches and I want to raise it
more. I want to get 36 out of it so I can fit my downhill mountain bike straight
up in it all the way. Got 1800 watt inverter, 25 gallon water tank, which is
ideal. Two 240 amp hour batteries and then another set of two 240 amp hour
batteries in the corner over there. So in all I got a 960 amp hours of battery.
500 watts of solar on the top – two 250’s. And, there we go…golden. Here’s the engine. Turbo diesel. Here’s the isolator that charges my house batteries.
Here’s the AC that they just, oh, it’s melted to this now, but they just
zip tied it off and put some electrical tape on it. I tried to charge it. I went
to Auto Pros and I bought the little AC charge and I put it on there and I was
holding it for a good five minutes before I actually looked down and
realized it was just all shooting out of this hose right here. I texted the
guy who I bought it from and I was like, “This doesn’t have AC?” and he was like, “Oh no we took it out for increased power.” I was like, all right. ♫Music Playing♫ So inside I’ve got my little cutting
board here that pulls out and my double propane stove. This is just a drawer that holds pots and pans with a beefy magnet that pulls it back, but we just use the
lock for extra safety measures. After I went off-roading and everything kind of
shifted and flew to one side of the van. Got some more storage down here. I’ve got Pop Tarts and then in here is my 12 pound propane tank. Underneath here we got the
diesel heater that’s pulling straight to the gas tank. I can run that for 24 hours
straight and it will only use like half a gallon of diesel and it, it’s like an
oven in here when you turn it on. Here’s the the controller over here. You just turn that
on. When you’re sitting down in the morning with the table out, all it does is
radiate heat up on you. You’re sweating on a nice cold day. ♫Music Playing♫ Over here you just got drawers that
hold silverware. And then you’ve got the sink and garbage
underneath. And then the sink top also doubles as a cutting board and got the
sink with a 12 volt marine grid water pump. I have to fill up water probably once
every two weeks. Got the Dometic DC compressor fridge with assortment of
food in there and this is my little pantry up here. Ideal piece of equipment
for van life is a dust cleaner to clean off your hood or your dashboard,
batteries, laptop, solar charger. Same with superglue. Favorite part of the van is my little closet that I have right here. These both fold up and come out and you can hang your clothes or put various other objects in there and that’s my wardrobe.
Then the same thing over here. This one’s a little bit bigger, but that
just holds sweatshirts and stuff. I decided to keep these folded down so I
wouldn’t have to put them up every time I wanted to grab a sweatshirt or
something. ♫Music Playing♫ This is the doorway to the garage. Good for putting paddle boards along or surfboard through. Got the little cassette toilet which I would highly recommend going away from because it is nasty dumping that thing. I’m looking at getting a composting toilet.
I’m going to take one of these sections right here, retrofit a composting toilet
in there and then cut a hole right there for the tank to just slide out and for easy
dumping and everything. It’s a queen-size bed with four inches of foam and then
springs underneath for extra comfort. Another thing I would like to change is
all the siding. There’s like a million and five screws in here so I can either
put some like burnt wood up in full-length pieces or I am just going
to say I’ll keep it and put some little glow paint on each one of the screws and
so when you turn the lights off, it’s like the night sky. Just lights up. ♫Music Playing♫ Advice I would say just go for it. Definitely do your research. You don’t want to get something that you, down the road, figure out that you absolutely hate. Establish a budget. Figure
out what your needs are and what you’d all be putting in the van. It’s okay to be
different so I mean if you’re miserable at your job, quit. Just make sure you have
some financials saved up. It’s scary at first and then when you transition the
first week is just the most stress-free week you can imagine. My message is just do what you want. Don’t be afraid to get off the path of being
normal. Sure, a lot of people think it’s
impractical and stupid to live in a van, but they don’t do it and they don’t
realize the kind of freedom you have and it really helps you out with like
gaining more financial freedom. If you pay it all up all you have to pay for is
insurance and cell phone and gas. Easily able to keep it under a thousand a month.
If you have a stable job that’s good for putting money away and you have a lot of
money for travel. Go cheap at first until you figure out what you really want and
definitely go for it. I mean I’m 21 years old and I’ve never been happier
than living in my van. Just having the freedom and more financial freedom and
just the drive to be able to go anywhere and wake up at the beach and open the
back doors and see the ocean first thing in the morning or up in the mountains and see the snow-capped mountains. I mean, just go for it.

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100 thoughts on “21-YEAR OLD trades Apartment in Seattle for LIFE ON ROAD in SPRINTER VAN

  1. Seems good but then you have those days of being really sick, dishrrea, puking, van is overrun by ants, super hot days, probably good between October and may

  2. When I was 21 I was struggling to feed myself while in college. This guy is doing well for himself, good job.

  3. What kind of batteries are you using? Does Solar power 2 and the alternator power the other 2? Van looks great

  4. So…I love these videos about living in a van or an RV, ect. But my husband and I STILL can't find how these people make money on the road? We can't find any…stable online jobs.

  5. I’ve been thinking of doing something like this since I was a child and it’s so incredible to see that there’s an entire community of people living in vans now.
    I’m lucky enough to get free housing on campus working as an RA but I can’t wait to soon join this community

  6. What a smart young man! Knows what he wants and goes for it, brilliant idea with the pull up closet, beautiful home on wheels! Happy adventures!

  7. Seems pretty"ideal". I like the layout. And I agree that you think, if you were to do it again you would start with a shell, and an air mattress. Mostly because if you have want, lets say more bike space, you could fit that in your plans since your building it, and you dont have work around the pre-built van. Instead you can fit the van with your needs and wants.

  8. My son is 12 and is definitely looking to go this route once he finishes school. Thanks to videos like this. I would have definitely done things differently had I had all this info when I was younger. Thanks for sharing. Dope ride!

  9. * Too much kitchen space could have used for shower / toilet etc. love love closet pull out. light weight.

  10. I agree with you . Have a nice life but don't forget about God 🙏 pray read your Bible Timothy & Proverbs King James have a nice life ok

  11. I think why these videos are so popular is the desire of even the most urban of people to live a more simple, nomadic and rustic life

  12. No one takes out a working ac for increased power. U jus don’t use it. He knew not to mention if U didn’t ask. Ur a smart guy so sure ya got that. Nice build like the slide up drawers! ☮️❤️🤗

  13. 0:17 he pays $2600 a month? That's pretty wild for a 21 year old. He must be a programmer or something…

  14. Its awesome man. Don't change a thing but the idea you had w the glow paint in the lag bolt heads is Stable Genius Epic. I'm 61 and starting a conversion on a 95 Saburban I bought from a friend for 6 bills. I have a lot of work and 6mo ahead of me. 2nd thought After looking at the headroom the vans like yours have I'm thinking I'll be better off to TLC my Chevy aburban. ,It's a Silverado package 4 by w factory HD everything.Sell or Trade it for a van I can stand up in and hit the freaking road again. It's been 10 yrs now.. WTF. I'm a nomad. Been one 46yrs. God is Gracious.

  15. Nah the AC wasnt taken out for “increased power”. You probably got a former fedex van which didnt come with AC standard and also doesnt come with passenger seat/airbag standard. Passenger seat and airbag is apparently easy to add but I guess not AC

  16. Great Build. I'd leave the walls as is and build cabinets and maybe an inside shower. Lite colors make a space seem larger

  17. Im looking for same thing except more power for pc batteries and stuff and less storage and a indoor shower with a toilet

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