We quit our 9-5 jobs to live off-grid in a van we bought for £3k – but there's a very embarrassing problem | The Sun
MANY people dream of packing in their jobs and travelling the world – and Chris and Sam Hoar have done just.
The couple, from Plymouth, spent 10 months turning an old Volkswagen minibus into a home, and have managed to make it worth nearly seven times the price of what they bought it for.
The only problem is they've had a bit of an embarrassing blunder with the shower door, which has led to the neighbours getting an unexpected eyeful!
It was May 2021 when Chris and Sam bought the old minivan for just £3,400, and they are now telling their story on the Channel 5 show Million Pound Motorhomes.
Chris, 29, was working as a mechanical engineer in his father’s business in Tavistock, and also a retained firefighter, while Sam, 29, was a beauty and massage therapist.
'Life is too short'
But the pandemic had given them “a burning desire to travel the world”.
Speaking to The Sun, they say: “It became even more clear to us that life is too short and you really should live life while you can.”
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Chris and Sam spent most weekends working on the build once they’d got it, ripping out the interior of the old minibus to replace it with their own furnishings fit for a home.
“We thought about the layout of the van and used social media as inspiration on different options and possibilities,” Sam says.
Spent over £10k
Chris adds: “Sam was already thinking about colours, cushions and finishing touches before we had finished taking the old layout of the bus out.
“She was very impatient and couldn't wait to turn it into a home.”
They eventually spent £10,750 on making over the van – but that was far less than they’d have spent if they hadn’t used Chris’ dad’s workshop.
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“Having that was a God’s send,” says Chris. “We had all the tools on-hand and it was a great place to store all our stuff too.”
10 months later and the couple’s dream motorhome was complete, and they were ready to go.
Despite them leaving their friends and family behind, everyone was very excited for them.
Shower was a rude awakening
Now worth around £20,000, Chris and Sam’s campervan is impeccably decorated, and includes oak worktops, lots of storage space, a lounge area with a bookshelf, shower, toilet, a roof terrace to sunbathe on, and a bed big enough for three!
“We fit quite comfortably on it, and our dog Fletcher squeezes in too,” laughs Sam.
But the couple have made one big mistake with a clear shower door, which has led to a lot of embarrassing moments.
“We chose to have a clear door with the plan to add a frosted film on to it,” they explain. “However, after our first attempt to create this effect failed, we decided to keep the door clear.
“We have to make sure our kitchen blind is down before we use the bathroom, and have had many moments when we forgot that we can be seen!”
7 countries in 11 weeks
In the past 11 weeks, Chris and Sam have travelled through France, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Germany, Austria, Slovenia and Italy.
And they document their every move on Instagram and YouTube.
But, despite them insisting their campervan has been “super reliable,” they’ve found it tough travelling through Europe in a heatwave – especially for their dog, Fletcher.
They say: “We are on our way back to the UK now and we will definitely avoid travelling to Europe in the summer months again.
“We look forward to some winter adventures in the camper, Norway is high on our hit list.”
The campervan’s roof has been fitted with solar panels, and 100 litres of fresh water can last them two to three days, meaning they can “be completely off-grid for four or five days”.
May live like this forever
Sam’s parents have now also taken the plunge, buying their own motorhome so they “could have the freedom” to spend time with the couple on the road.
So will they live like this forever?
“We are unsure of how long we will live on the road,” they finish. “We have a long list of places we would love to explore.
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“Nobody knows what's around the next corner but we plan to spend the next few years creating memories in the van and sharing our experiences along the way, hopefully inspiring others to chase their dreams too.”
Million Pound Motorhomes S2 starts Sunday July 24 at 8pm on Channel 5
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