Couple think ‘f**k it’ and turn £7k builders van into cosy home and head to Switzerland

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David Montgomery, 30, and Abbie Murray, 27, have spent the last few years building their dream home in the back of a Ford Transit – and now they’re all set to move into it full time

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Couple share their van life adventure in Europe

A couple bought a builders van for £7,000 and converted it into a chic home which they now use to tour Europe – despite having no DIY experience.

David Montgomery, 30, and Abbie Murray, 27, bought their high-top Ford Transit for a bargain price, but it was a little bare inside with panel walls, metal floor, and no windows.

Despite not having the relevant skills, the couple set about converting the van themselves so they could get it exactly how they want it – and now they’re finally done.

The pair, from Scotland, said that having the ‘f**k it’ approach was essential, and now use their bespoke van to tour around Europe and live in it part-time.







They converted the van themselves, despite having never done DIY before
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Image:

David and Abbie)

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Abbie said: “We purchased the van for £7,000, and spend about another £7,000 building it. Prior to the build, we had absolutely no DIY experience and much of this also included the cost of tools.

“Although it resulted in more mistakes, we were determined to complete the build ourselves.

“We wanted to convert a van because it seemed like the ideal way to travel. Flying is great, but you typically only see what’s within a couple of miles of your hotel







Now they spend their time driving to beauty spots and taking in the sights
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Image:

David and Abbie)

“Being able to travel at your own pace, with your own little home and all your things with you has allowed us to see literally thousands of amazing places we would never have seen any other way.

“And at the end of the day, you get to jump back into your own bed and have your own space.”

The pair finished the van conversion recently and have taken it on a few trips to road test it, but now they’re set to live in it full time.

They said that converting the van was a challenge, but that anyone could do it and all you need is the right outlook.







First job was to properly clean the van
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Image:

David and Abbie)

Abbie continued: “Like many things, the biggest hurdle is simply taking the leap and committing.

“Taking on a project like this knowing that it’s going to take a lot of work requires a bit of the old ‘f**k it’ approach.

“It wouldn’t be vanlife without challenges! Our first huge challenge was building the van. As I mentioned, neither of us had any DIY experience. I think David had used a drill once before, but that was about it.

“Building a van is like building a small house. You need to wire electrical circuits through inverters, install diesel heaters, build walls and insulate them, install piping and flooring… Not to mention custom build all your furniture to actually fit and work properly in a constantly moving vehicle.







Their bed has some incredibly nice views
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Image:

David and Abbie)

“It was a great learning experience! I’ll never forget the day we cut a large hole in the van roof to install our electric fan… It look longer than expected and a two-day storm came over before we could finish.

“We couldn’t work in the rain and the van flooded! Of course, we still have challenges on the road, typically when David likes to push our 4×4 van a little further off-road than he should, in a bid to find the best wild camping spot… But nothing compares to the initial build.

“At the moment, we spend the odd weekend in the van, as well as one or two bigger trips per year. In total, we’ve spent over 500 nights in the van, at one point living in it for over 18 months full time.

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“We’ve pretty thoroughly explored our back garden now, with most of Wales, England and Scotland explored (Ireland still to come!).

“We’re just back from a road trip down to the Barcelona Grand Prix, where we also spent some time in the Pyrenees, the Catalonia coast and the South of France.

“We’re hoping to drive down to the Amalfi coast later in the year. To date though, we’ve spent some time in most European countries – France, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Italy, Belgium, Spain etc.”

Abbie and David document their travels on YouTube, and you can see them in action by visiting their channel here.

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