Sometimes, people get tired of their lives. They want a change, often something radical. Well, one woman wanted one such change. But no one would’ve expected that the change she was looking for would have been in the form of a bus.
Jessie Lipskin is a woman, 30 years old at the time, originally entrenched in the world of finance. However, she had begun to get tired of this lifestyle. As a result, she started browsing online, looking for something to give her life a little bit more of a spark. And that’s when she found a derelict Greyhound bus for sale online.
Lipskin decided to leave her apartment in New York City to build herself a new home. And she wanted to use the Greyhound bus as its base. From that point on, she would end up spending three years and thousands of dollars transforming it into an ideal place to live.
A Real Fixer Upper
The bus itself only cost Jessie $7,000 on eBay. And seeing what it looked like after she got it, it’s not hard to see why. It was a 1966 GMC Commuter Greyhound bus. And being that old and out of use for that long meant it was obviously in a state of disrepair. RVs lacked the aesthetic that Lipskin preferred, so she went for a conversion with this bus instead. Funnily enough, Jessie didn’t even have a driver’s license at the time she purchased the bus.
An Eco-Friendly Person
The renovations of this bus into a home weren’t just because she liked the idea. Jessie Lipskin is a vegan and overall eco-friendly person. Small homes like this tend to use much less energy than normal-sized homes. So not only would it be cheaper to own and maintain, but also better for the environment.
It wasn’t an immediate decision for Jessie to decide to move into a bus. She gradually transitioned from her New York City lifestyle, condensing more and more of her life as time went on. She began to stop focusing on material possessions and began to almost regularly relocate. By her seventh relocation, everything she owned could fit in her SUV.
A Love Of Travel
Jessie also didn’t just want to live a simpler life. She wasn’t to see the world as well. She had spent most of her life in Manhattan and wanted a change. And getting a portable home helped her do just that. With each of her several moves, she changed and upgraded the bus at each location.
Jessie was excited upon first seeing her new bus. Despite the fact that it was still a piece of junk. It had transported millions of people over the years, so that was to be expected. Fortunately, Jessie had a clear vision of what she wanted her new mobile home to look like. Both on the inside and out.
Starting From Scratch
The bus was exactly as advertised, which wasn’t in great shape. So Jessie wasn’t surprised with what she ended up with. This bus needed to be stripped down to the bones. However, that made it all the more easy for Jessie to build it back up again. With her team, Jessie took to removing the remaining seats and anything else in the interior, so that she could create her dream home.
Jessie soon learned that renovating a bus into a home was a lot different different than just renovating a stationary home. It was important to take movement into account, so that things wouldn’t just go flying around every time you moved the bus. The slanted style windows also made it challenging to design the best layout. It became obvious she needed some more help with the project.
Being constantly on the move while renovating the bus allowed Jessie to meet plenty of helpful people along the way. While she liked do-it-yourself things, she wasn’t knowledgeable enough in regards to plumbing, electricity, or carpentry for this project. Fortunately, a number of friends and contractors were willing to help out. And she got a rather large support network for the project.
It shouldn’t be too surprising that, out of all the groups of people that weren’t so jazzed about Jessie’s decision, it was her family. Her mother thought she was crazy and told everyone in her apartment building. However, they also believed that if anyone could make it work, it would be Jessie. It took some time, but she eventually earned her family’s support.
Getting Things Just Right
While she had all the help she needed, the end result was to ultimately be Jessie’s vision. And it was on her if the project didn’t work out. She meticulously went over even the finest details. She found building walls and closets to be the most difficult parts to build. If the angle wasn’t the same every time she parked, it might end up becoming difficult to open any doors.
After completing scaffolding and the main framework, Jessie and her team focused on basic furnishings. She hired Mike Slater, a local carpenter, to make customized woodwork. In an Instagram post she described it as “amazing carpentry”. And when Slater was done, the closets, boardings, and kitchen countertops were all ready for use.
Plates On Display
Of course, Jessie was respectful to the origin of the bus. She kept its license plate and the plate detailing its origin of construction. It was only fitting for her to display them in her new home, as a way of honoring the people that allowed her to get this project done in the first place.
After three years, with all the time, energy, and money put into it, Jessie could finally gaze upon her completed home. It cost $70,000 to complete the conversion, but that’s still much cheaper than a standard Manhattan apartment. And Jessie was excited to finally show off her masterpiece.
Inside And Out
Of course, it wasn’t just the interior that Jessie cared about. The shape stayed the same, but she made sure to give it a completely new coat of paint, giving it an all-white paint job.
On the inside, it turned out to be surprisingly spacious, something that Jessie was ironically not happy about. She wanted to downsize, but her bus home felt larger than her last apartment. On the bride side, she was able to make the best out of the space she had.
Now It’s A Home
Jessie’s new home perfectly reflected her personality and her New York roots. It was decorated with a number of family heirlooms and family photos. And she regularly uses china plates that her great-grandmother once used in her home on Delancey Street on the Lower East Side.
Not only does the kitchen look like something out of a high-end brochure, but it also utilizes the environment pretty well too. It is equipped with all the amenities you’d expect from a modern apartment, including wooden countertops, an oven, stove, and a large sink. It also has tons of storage. There is even an energy efficient washing machine and a dryer in the kitchen area. Like a number of other parts of the home, the kitchen window boasts stunning views of Jessie’s surroundings.
All homes need a bathroom as well. And that even turned out to be unexpectedly roomy. It has mahogany wood slotted flooring that drains for drying off after showering. And the shower drain connects to the floor drain, with them both leading to a gray water tank mounted under the bus.
A Nice View
But the most beautiful room in the house is the bedroom. It has an open window that provides Jessie with beautiful views. Something that gives her plenty of natural lighting. She even hears the birds chirp when she wakes up in the morning. Her home also includes a library, which she hoped she’d have more time to read from now that she’s less busy.
Being particularly more spacious than expected gave Jessie plenty of storage space. Although, she still makes sure to be more efficient with what she has. The closets are surprisingly deep, but Jessie normally throws out anything that she doesn’t need anymore. It definitely helps to prevent clutter.
Despite the downsizing, Jessie made sure to keep enough room in the bus for potential guests. There’s an extra sleeping space in case anyone decided to stay with her. It’s a fully functional guest bedroom.
Before And After
If you compare what the bus used to look like to what it looks like now, it’s a real stark different. Looking at the bus from just the inside, you wouldn’t even guess it was a bus. However, Jessie has stated she gained more knowledge from converting the bus than actually using it. She had it on Craigslist at one point with the intention to sell it. Now, the bus home is available as a potential Airbnb location to stay in.