Adventures in real estate: “I bought an RV and hit the road”

Adventures in real estate: “I bought an RV and hit the road”

Four Torontonians who traded real estate for wheel estate

Jessye Finch, 28

Clinical herbalist, Hockley valley

“I’ve just launched my practice as a clinical herbalist. With the cost of rent in Toronto plus my business expenses, life was becoming unaffordable. I work with clients all over Canada via video call, so it was easy for me to make the move into an RV. As for where I’ll take mine, I’m undecided at the moment. It’s at my parents’ 20-acre farm in Hockley Valley.”

Specs: A 2009 Heartland North Trail 21FBS bumper-pull trailer with a queen bed. “It was recently renovated with shiplap wood walls, subway tile in the kitchen and a livestock tank for a bathtub.”
Price: $10,000
Mileage: It’s 11 years old and has been towed 100 km in total.

Kristen Parker, 23, and Chris Parker, 22

She’s a copywriter; he’s an engineering student, Barrie

“We were renting a tiny basement apartment in Rexdale for $1,600 that had us feeling cooped up during the pandemic, so we moved in with my parents in Barrie. With the savings in rent, we realized we could finally afford a van. Our conversion budget was $10,000. We’ll be studying and working remotely while we’re on the road. I have a sewing machine on board and I’ll make hair accessories to supplement our income. We’ll head to Vancouver, and then, once the border opens and it’s safe, we’ll go down the U.S. West Coast and across to Arizona, then head toward the East Coast.”

Specs: 2011 Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 144WB. “We renovated to add a futon that converts into a queen-size bed. There’s also a sink, a propane stove, a table and a camper toilet for emergencies.”
Price: $19,000
Mileage: 150,000 km

Kyla Pugh, 33

Former flight attendant, Mimico

“I lost my job in March. A few months later, I bought an old RV on Kijiji. I’m now converting it into an off-the-grid tiny home on wheels. I’m adding full solar power and a composting toilet. My renovation budget is $7,700, and if all goes well, I’m going to start a side business flipping RVs. I’ll go to the West Coast once winter hits, then do Alaska to Patagonia if travel restrictions allow.”

Specs: A 1982 21-foot GMC Vandura Security. “It’s got a double bed over the cab, an indoor living and dining area, shower, toilet and a kitchenette with an oven.”
Price: $5,300
Mileage: 47,000 km

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