Van Life Income is designed to help you find the most suitable way to earn money remotely whilst on the road, travelling the world, or otherwise…and ultimately the opportunity for complete freedom from the 9 to 5 and ability to live life on your own terms #passiveincome!
Whilst there is a focus on the #vanlife lifestyle, most of the content on this site is suitable for anyone who has the goal of taking control of their income, earning money remotely or working towards a true freedom that is not bound by time and location.
That's what ‘van life' is to me; a state of freedom.
It's mainly written by myself, Carl(ey) and some by my partner, Jules. We're a female couple with a small dog currently living a part-time #vanlife exploring Ireland and the UK with plans to hit mainland Europe for a year in 2022.
You should be able to find VLI on social media here:
My background is pretty varied and I'll cover it in more detail below as I write 95% of the content. Jules is a web software developer by trade and has a background in rock, grunge, pop and electronic music, she sometimes writes, but mainly does ‘tech stuff'. Benj is the smallest member of the family and also the boss. As head of operations, he ensures there's enough profits each week to cover his Dentastix.
I’ve worked most of my life self-employed in the area of online marketing, SEO and growth for tech startups and local businesses, with brief spats of employment, founding high growth ‘startup’ ventures, CX/EX, pr and music events and lots of ‘side hustles’ or mini-ventures ranging from WordPress websites and advertising, to eBook writing, freelancing, affiliate marketing, Amazon review sites, surveys, CPA advertising, lead generation, print on demand products (T-shirt design), cryptocurrency ‘investing’ since mid-2017, ‘passive income' crypto since late-2020 and defi/staking/yieldfarming since early 2021.
I also have had a couple of investment properties since 2007/8 (yeah, that timing was shit!) and have always been more interested in creating ‘passive' income streams than any other.
Outside of ‘work stuff' and #vanife I've been a bit of a biker (motorcycles), I tend to ride a bicycle more than I drive, done some kickboxing, started kitesurfing but covid put a stop to that (must get back to it!), enjoy swimming in open waters – well, jumping in and floating, maybe swimming a bit!
I quite like growing things but am never around long enough to keep things alive, love trying new food/drink, seeing new places and I go to see live music and DJs as much as possible – love a good festival and dote on our wee dog 🐶 (and most animals tbh).
One thing I didn’t do is spend much time on proper financial planning or the future — hey, that big venture, property investment or one of those fab side hustles would take care of everything, right? Hmmm, maybe not so.
When covid hits, you’re closing in on 40 with zero pension and much of your primary income disappears overnight, you wallow for a while. Then you reflect on the past and start to think about things differently and take action…
The start of a journey
My partner and I had been saving for a ‘big adventure’ for a few years. With a dog and COVID restrictions at play, dreams of freedom and escaping the nine-to-five, we decided on a DIY van conversion and a year was going to be it.
That single decision has taken us through a process of discovery. One of my primary considerations was around finances and creating an income that could sustain us and ideally see us better off in the long run.
So with Van Life Income, I aim to share the various ways to earn a remote income on the road (or from anywhere really!) alongside the reality, pros and cons of various options from personal experience. No doubt there will be some experiments along the way!
I’ll also provide a bit of a framework for how to decide what method(s) of remote income might be best suited to you — everybody is different and what's right for one might not be right for another.
The van (& earning an income)
There are many blogs and Instagrams with beautiful inspirational #vanlife photos, and a great photographer/model I am not! So for now, we won’t have typical ‘van life’ photos on this site but I will share a few as time goes on!
Meanwhile, I’ll focus more on the money side of things — I’ll share our van decisions in terms of purchasing a base van and converting (including how we cut our initial van costs by 50% and used the remainder to create a passive income stream) alongside some of the products we used in our van conversion and a few unglamorous photos of the conversion process.
Note that any conversion tips and learnings come from a complete beginner with no previous mechanical, electrical or joinery experience. You have been warned!
We’re also working in an environment whereby the van is parked roadside with minimal access to workshop facilities (er – zero access actually; we built our ‘van kitchen’ in our ‘kitchen-kitchen’. Not fun lol).
Whilst we’re based in Northern Ireland – that wee bit of the United Kingdom that’s on the island of Ireland but is not the most northern point, all figures will be translated to approximate USD to make reading easier for readers from all countries.
Hopefully you find something useful, whatever your goals 🙂