After yesterday's post I received some reader comments on my facebook page regarding how we are going to be able to afford a year-long bus tour of the United States on a limited budget. It's a good question, and one worth answering - so here is the second segment of How We're Affording That. If you missed the first segment, it's here.
On to Segment Two:
In short, we are supremely lucky.
About a year ago, a co-worker of Michael's left the "home-office" and moved to Jacksonville, Florida to pursue his love of sky-diving (yes, that is the real reason). He has been tele-commuting ever since.
In (semi) jest one day during a discussion about this particular co-worker, Michael said, "I wish I could do that!" and his boss said, quite seriously, "You can!"
He let it go for a couple of days, but after some encouragement on my part he emailed her and said, "What if I was serious about that whole... tele-commuting thing?" Her answer, basically, was that he could move to any location he desired in the U.S. and keep his current job - they would set him up with a laptop, he had to follow some rules, he still had to keep normal business hours, and he would run meetings via tele-conference. We were both floored. This meant that we could follow our dream much more quickly than we imagined.
So that's the first way we can afford it - Michael will still be working at this current salary.
The second way is that our land is currently under contract. We have been trying to sell this piece of land for over a year and the contract was ratified today. As long as the buyer doesn't back out, we will have a relatively large check that we will immediately use to pay off my hefty school loan for my master's degree, a loan from a friend, and some money that we owe to our church. (Actually, we will have $6,500 left on my MA, but it's much better than the 43K we were staring down before, and the rest of our debts will be paid in full.)
Third, we'll be putting our house on the market this winter. After the sale of our house, we'll have what we were paying for the mortgage to use for travel, diesel, etc.
We've also been saving as much as possible, as you can see from the handy little thermometer in the right side-bar.
We're hoping to have $5,000 saved for the purchase of the bus (around $2500) and enough to convert it with mostly used and scavenged parts. We are doing all of the work on the bus ourselves.
Once we've got the bus to where we'd like it to be, we hope to save $3,000 additionally to convert the bus to run on veggie oil, which will save us a ton on fuel.
Not sure if that answered all of the questions folks have regarding our trip and our finances, but it's a start! Feel free to leave any additional questions in the comment section. I'm happy to write a third segment :)