If you've looked at Class B camper vans and you've never found a floor plan that suited your needs, consider talking to a custom van builder. You can start with your own van that has a short or long wheelbase and have a camper van built just the way you want it. For instance, you may not want to waste space on a separate bathroom in your van if you're traveling alone and can hide a compost toilet in a drawer or cabinet. Here are some tips for working with a custom van builder.
Learn About The Best Van To Buy
If you don't own a van yet, talk to the van builder about the models of vans to consider buying. Some may adapt to customization better or have other advantages for camping. Plus, your van builder might prefer to work on certain van models.
Consider A Predesigned Package
You may want to look at your custom van builder's predesigned packages if you want to simplify your van conversion. While you can have a custom design that's all your own, you may find that one of the luxury or basic predesigns is perfect for your needs. Plus, you'll be able to see photos, videos, and maybe even a live example of the predesign you're considering.
Talk About How You'll Use Your Van
Custom van builders are often camping and van-life enthusiasts. They understand the needs you'll have if you want to live in the van full time or if you just want the van to take on camping trips with your family. Let the builder know what's important to you. If you love to cook, you may want to devote more space to a kitchen in your van, but if you rarely cook, you could use the space for more shower room or extra seating space.
Consider Solar Power
If you want to camp off the grid, you might want your van to be set up with solar power and an inverter so you can get by without electrical hookups and still have lights and other conveniences. If you'll always stay in RV resorts, solar power may not be important, and you can save money by eliminating it.
Discuss Safety Issues
You might not know much about van safety issues, so you'll want to feel confident you can rely on the custom van builder to make your van safely. You may want to talk about the weight distribution of the building materials and added features such as smoke detectors. If you'll live in the van full time, you want to be surrounded by safe materials that are nonflammable and that don't emit a lot of toxic VOCs in your tiny space. For instance, you may want your van builder to install vinyl flooring that is non-toxic.