So you’ve decided to try the skoolie life. Good for you! Buying a used school bus and converting it into a tiny home or apartment on wheels will take a fair amount of money, but not as much as a brick-and-mortar apartment or house would.
Just as with any purchase you’d make, there are several factors you need to consider before getting started. This includes the floor plan; without even a draft of the floor plan, you may end up getting a bus that’s too small, even if the used skoolie for sale seems like a good bargain. That said, here are a few ideas you can use to put together a floor plan that doesn’t sacrifice luxury for practicality.
A convertible shower is one thing you’ll want to consider for your bathroom. The typical enclosure takes up 9 square feet that you’d use less than an hour a day. However, a convertible shower means you’d have a full-sized shower when you needed it and extra counter space the rest of the time. To achieve this, you’d need to build an enclosure to unfold to become the shower, and folds to become a counter when you’re done.
If you’re not too pressed for space but you want to cut down on how much water you use each day, then a recirculating shower could be just what you need. The water is filtered every time it recirculates, and the filter even removes the soap so you don’t have to deal with any residue. There are kits available, but you can get by with a pump, filter assembly, shower head, and basin to catch the water.
Kitchen and Dining Room Ideas
A cutting board that slides or unfolds out will tick both boxes. You’ll have extra work space when you need it, and more room to walk around any other time, and you won’t need storage space for a cutting board.
Another thing to consider for the kitchen is to get either a camp stove or a portable induction burner instead of a permanent oven. If you plan to bake, consider a portable camp oven or a solar oven. Both being portable, they won’t take up much space indoors when you aren’t using them. You’ll need to find a space to park in order to cook safely, but that’s not much of a drawback.
Most skoolie floor plans place the dining room next to the kitchen, and there’s no reason you can’t do the same. But if you want to have a bit more space for other pieces of furniture, a folding table or else a modular one is a good idea. You can find folding or modular tables in some stores, or you can build one yourself if you’re handy enough.
A rooftop cargo box is a great way to add more storage without taking up inside space, at least if you have enough on the roof.
You could also use wall-mounted closets so you’ll have enough floor space for dressers, or else nightstands with drawers. You’ll want to consider narrow shelving that rolls or slides out to store spices and other kitchen items, or soaps, shampoos, and lotions in the bathroom.
These are just a few ideas you can use to build towards your dream skoolie to maximize your space. You can use them as is, or adapt them to fit your own lifestyle and priorities.