Andrew Jeffery was like many Aussies who found themselves with a lot of extra time when lockdowns hit, so he decided to give himself a challenge to renovate his former work van into the ultimate home on wheels.
Andrew told Yahoo Finance the idea to renovate the 2018 Mercedes Sprinter van actually came from his daughter.
“My daughter had just set off with two friends around Australia and that got me interested so I thought, why not give it a go? I decided to put my hands to use by renovating [my van] into a gorgeous campervan, perfect for a relaxing couples escape,” he said.
Also read: How Aussie has earned $2,300 from her home
In the nine months since completing the project, Andrew has made around $15,000 renting Queensie out for $180 a night on Camplify.
“Queensie is now a fully equipped camper with a queen-size bed, fridge, comfortable seating, fans, fly nets, and solar to help travellers be self-sufficient,” he said.
“I also added an external shower, heating for winter and lots of clever storage solutions, with a goal to make it appealing enough for my partner to want to join in.”
How much does it cost to renovate a van?
Andrew said while the initial investment was large, he found creative ways to cut costs and it helped that he is handy.
“The van cost me just over $50,000 and I spent about $25,000 to build, not including my labour,” he said.
“I learnt a lot of clever ways to save money where it doesn’t impact the end result. Simple things like buying a table saw so you can cut down all your wood needs and using Gumtree for things like bed frames.”
How can other Aussies do the same?
Andrew said converting a van was an amazing hobby and would recommend it to anyone wanting to give it a go.
“I loved it and learnt so much along the journey. Now it’s finished it makes getting away so easy. At the moment, I have Queensie rented out fairly consistently and the process is quite fun and pretty easy. I enjoy meeting all the hirers and hearing about their plans,” he said.
“Camplify is a great way of making use of your van when you are not using it and can be a great extra income.
“You will have to commit to preparing your van well each time and ensure it is in great condition.”