You probably never considered the impact of vanlife until you saw a picture of someone who lives this lifestyle. Vanlife is an extreme version of nomadism, where people live in their vans wherever they are, so it appears drastic. However, this is only half of the story.
If you think about it, we all do some form of nomadic living already. Whether we own a house with limited space or have access to a car at all times, most people are already familiar with the idea of living in a vehicle somewhere else. And if you consider that almost everyone you know has either done overnight stays in friends’ homes or stayed temporarily at a campground as kids, chances are most people have experienced something similar to van life before.
What is Vanlife?
Vanlife is a lifestyle where you move from place to place in a van. You may live in your van full-time or while you are at work or school. You may also have a workspace in your van that you use to do some work or some investments like cars and real estate or an online business.
Vanlife is part adventure and part a way to overcome financial challenges. You will live in your van full-time. Let’s face it, there are a lot of benefits to van life, but it’s not for everyone. So if you’re thinking about trying it, we’d like to give you a few things to think about. Let’s start with why people do it in the first place.
Psychological Effects of Vanlife
Physical – Your body might get used to the lack of sleep or the activity of moving around, which can create a large psychological impact. You might become more outgoing or introverted depending on your personality. You’ll learn to be more flexible because in order to live in your van, you’ll need to be willing to change your schedule and rearrange your life to make room for whatever else may come up.
Emotional – Living in a van can boost your emotional well-being because you’ll have more flexibility to deal with different situations and emotions. You’ll learn to set boundaries because you can’t always be present for everyone who wants to be around you. You might also find that you have more patience for people because you don’t have to be around them all the time. Living on your own is a great way to learn how to set boundaries and maintain your own mental health.
Benefits of Vanlife
Travel – You’ll tap into the nomadic mindset to gain some travel experience. You might want to explore a new region or the country you’re in. You might also want to visit a different city to see how people live there. You’ll have the flexibility to do whatever you want, whenever you want.
Work – You might be able to work remotely while living in your van. This can allow you to work anywhere, anywhere you have a computer and internet connection. You’ll have some flexibility to schedule your work around your life, instead of having to work in a traditional 9 to 5.
Drawbacks of Vanlife
- Space – You’ll be living in a smaller space than your typical house would. You might want to invest in a smaller van to make this easier, but you’ll want to make sure you have enough space for all of your belongings.
- Privacy – When you live in your van, you’re essentially living in public. You’ll be more vulnerable to people who want to mess with you or rob you. You might want to live on a property where you have some privacy from the street.
- Costs – You’ll need to budget for heating and electricity and gas. Depending on where you live, these might be expensive. You’ll also want to make sure you have enough money saved up to cover any unexpected repairs or maintenance that may come up.
How to Become a Van-life master
Let’s face it, living in a van full-time is an extreme lifestyle. However, it’s not completely out of the question for some people. If you’ve been inspired by stories of vanlifers and want to give it a try, here are some guidelines to help you get started. Research the local laws and regulations. Many of the laws and regulations that apply to cars don’t make sense when applied to a van.
You don’t want to get stuck in a ticket or in a situation that makes it difficult for you to continue living in your van. Make sure your van is safe to live in. Get regular maintenance done. Make sure your brakes, tires, and other parts are working as they should. Plan for any potential interruptions to your vanlife. Make sure you have a safety plan for any other activities you might have to cancel, such as work, if an event were to become dangerous.
While vanlife may appear to be an extreme lifestyle, it is actually more of a lifestyle choice than a lifestyle. You might be living in your van, but you might also be staying in a hotel or renting a house while you travel.
You’ll have a place to stay while you’re exploring a new city or exploring a new region of your country. You don’t have to live full-time in your van to reap the benefits of this lifestyle. With that in mind, here are a few reasons why you might want to give it a try.