Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Not at all awkward

Here we are in the middle of November. I haven't been posting as much, so I figured it was time for an update.

The summer months of July and August were unreasonably warm and I was running the generator a lot more than I remember in previous years. The big difference to me was that things warmed up MUCH sooner than before. It got to the point where I would start the generator at 6 in the morning so I wouldn't have to get up at 9 to turn it on. However, as we went into October, I was able to get by with just running the fan off of the batteries.

In September, I had to take the van in for some shock and strut work, as well as new tires on the front. I also got the van's air conditioner fixed for the first time since I purchased the van. I paid over $500 for the repair work and over $200 for the tires, so my expenses did jump up a bit.

Now that we are firmly into Fall, there are some days I don't even have to turn on the fan. The only power I use is to charge any portable devices and run my drop light. It's rather pleasant this time of year.

Either this week or next, I need to take my van up for inspection, but since I did those repairs in September, I shouldn't have much issue. I also plan to drop off the generator at home so we have it available during the winter months.

I have updated my spreadsheet, and posted my current summary below. I am rather pleased to report that my "savings" is well over what I have spent on the van including investment and operating costs. Over the course of two years, I saved over $9k in post-tax dollars! Or for those of you familiar with living costs around DC and NOVA, I have maintained an "apartment" for 2 years for just under $7000.

Totals as of November 15th, 2011:
Equipment: $5,500
Operating: $1,380
Total: $6,879

My comparison is a $500/mo apartment + $100 utilities.
From 8/1/2009 to 11/1/2011, the cost would be $16,000.
Which means I have currently saved $9,120 or 43%.


  1. Just read through your blog. Very interesting. When I was a little kid, I used to dream about doing something like this. But now I'm a very tall person with a significant other.

    Still... there's an eight-year-old me in my brain who thinks this is really cool.

    1. For once, I'm glad I'm not tall. I originally had my bed lengthwise in the van, but that takes up a lot of space. So I turned it sideways at the back of the van. Now, I can lay flat and have an inch of space between my head and the wall (and my feet and the wall on the other side). But I also have a recessed window. That gives me about 3 more inches to stretch my feet out. If I was taller, I wouldn't be able to do this.

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