Insurance Turns Vandweller into an Outlaw. Canadian Masked Vandweller and Her Amazing Van Build

**Insurance Turns Vandweller into an Outlaw. Canadian Masked Vandweller and Her Amazing Van Build**



View Time:20:24Minutes



In today’s video, we mee the Masked Canadian!! She is a vandweller from Canada and the reason she is wearing a mask is that she could not find an insurance company that would insure the van if she modified it to live in. So she ended up insuring it as a commercial vehicle and didn’t tell them she had modified it. But, now she doesn’t want them to know what she has done so she is wearing a mask so no one can identify her. I know it is weird, but most vandwellers I know have something weird about them, and this is just another one!

She’s done a great job converting her van and I think you will find some great ideas you can borrow from her! I hope you enjoy meeting a true eccentric character and learn lots from her!

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No matter how cheap your budget, you can learn something from this video about vandwelling and how to turn your car, van, caravan or RV into a surprisingly cheap and mobile, tiny house on wheels! You’ll learn everything you need to know to live in a car, van or RV. Then you can live the life of your dreams by adopting a minimalist, simple and frugal life of travel and adventure as a gypsy, nomad, traveler, vagabond, tramp, hobo or even a prepper by dropping out of the Rat Race and becoming a full-time Vandweller or RVer, @vanlife, #vanlife.


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all right so you must be running from the law that's why we're you're wearing a mask no no hi everyone welcome back to my next video today we're going to meet the masked van dweller from Canada from Canada of course could massive and/or would have to be from Canada why are you wearing a mask because I had such a problem getting insurance on the van that I I'm a person who likes to be upfront and honest and I couldn't be totally honest with my inch my insurer and I know they've got face recognition software and stuff like that I'm just paranoid so well tell us the story of your insurance well first of all I think that their insurance companies are in cahoots with the RV manufacturers so I just can't see the reason why they wouldn't insure a van conversion but nobody in Ontario would cover a van conversion only I did find one company they would say no we will not do a van conversion but they wouldn't give me any guidelines about what kinds of things they would cover or not cover like don't drill holes in the floor I mean if you had some kind of guidelines then you could follow them and then get insurance it is possible in Ontario to have your van replated and reclassified as an RV by the Ministry of Transportation if you follow some guidelines but the insurance company said no we won't insure you if you do it so even if you're legally in our V they will refuse to cover you to call I asked if I took it to a food truck conversion company and have them do some of the work would they cover me no I called companies that did conversions for handicapped people and if they did some of the work with the insurance company cover me know I talked to the companies that the vank the handicap van conversions go to for their insurance and talk to them and they wouldn't cover me they wouldn't they said you couldn't do any modifications but they refuse to define what modifications were so I went to my lawyer and I said what's a modification what's a definition and he said it was anything that affects the structural integrity of the truck so when I finally found an insurance company that was even listening to me I said I'm only going to use the existing tie-downs the existing holes that already exist can I do that I'm not going to touch I'm not going to drill anything into the van can I do that that's what I had done I had to make templates because there's so many different sizes of holes and shapes of holes in this thing that you had to make templates to know how to install so the bottom line was they weren't gonna let you modify virtually anything about the van that's right any holes any cuts and they would not cover you and if you think about the handicap van they got to cut this whole section out they have to go in and cut it out and and weld and everything right so and so did you end up getting it insured yeah obviously you did but it's still a commercial still in rated commercial yeah right and if I had a business they wouldn't have challenged right it wouldn't have any big deal you're just a business yes so but I'm not a business right but you're still paying for the insurance for a business and RV insurance would be half the insurance and I'm paid right you're just paying a hole an arm and a leg now let me say that that is nearly identical the situation in the United States if you tell them you are going to live in your RV or you are going to modify the RV and to make it a camper nearly every insurance company in America will refuse to insure you so don't do that and my advice to everyone is just don't tell them don't don't ask don't tell except that you can find a state some states are making it very easy to reconvert in in the United States make it easy to reconvert as an RV I do know for a fact that Tennessee is one of them so if you can find a state where it's easy go there become the resident and then be change it from an RV from a commercial vehicle to an RV then it's pretty easy and you can get insurance and that's hard for me to do and that's what I'm doing this because I basically said I'm gonna throw a mattress in the back and some boxes of stuff and I'm gonna use just the existing tie-downs okay so that's why you're wearing a mask that's why I'm wearing because you don't want your insurance company to find out and cancel you and make your life miserable we're running away and I don't want to move to Tennessee no no so now we'll move on and talk about your amazing wonderful van you like it I do I think it's astonishing it's not a macho van no it isn't and it really you it was fairly easy to do wasn't it um well because there is no plumbed in anything right I didn't and then I had a help from my friend Evangelos who used to be an airplane mechanic so he had the tools to I was just going to attach things to the subfloor and he said no let's do biscuit joining so he biscuit joint something oh my goodness router routered edges for me and this is an egg key apiece that holds this and that whole one things in place see very nice yeah and those just hold what's so organized and and attractive I had some guidelines about what I wanted to have in here and it had to be practical and useful and had to be a good storage had to be light and weight best value for the money it aid an organization and the best use of space so this losses on best use of space but all the other things were you know I don't know it's pretty good organized you see in these shelves very nice they attach on the bottom they were hard to find because most of them attach on the side and there's all kinds of little you know there's a stove there's my sink if I want to use it and the refrigerator it's an angles and it requires six inches all the way around so I put it on a platform and put a little guide too so those legs sit underneath and then I attached it to the back so in and it's not gonna go anywhere if there happen to and it doesn't hold a lot you just have to be very efficient but these are about the best you can buy they max when they turn on is 30 watts and when they're going they use 20 it's like a 20 watt light bulb it's their the Engel is by far the best the most expensive but the best but again you're getting value it doesn't have to be level right you can replace parts right it it's sips energy so over the long haul this is the cheapest thing to buy I agree so it's so many of them I'm afraid they're gonna bought died after five years and that you're not going to worry about an Engel dying in five years it's just isn't going to and I'm I'm struck by your use of Plexiglas here that's actually Plexiglas that was Evangelos this idea is Roy an idea it cuts the wind it gives me light and visibility yeah stuff doesn't fall out the back and I only have to cover this to keep mosquitoes out right just this area because this is completely sealed right and it it curves to fit the curve of the van right this is Ikea so I just cut it down to fit and and I had this space I said Evangelos how could I make that into a closet so he took a bunch of old pieces of metal and he cut them and he welded it together and he put these notches in it not he and he painted it it looks like it was made for this purpose one of the things I concern myself with is being clean yes in the van when you don't have running water I don't want people to think that nomads are somehow dirty or unsanitary you know you do have to make extra effort to be clean yeah and I learned that from you Bob true you did this whole thing with handy wipes and in this and then the spray and I I thought your cleaner than anybody living in a sticks and bricks and I use you had one guy who's his whole packing system was these yes so there's all my leggings it keeps everything super super organized and neat and dust you know dust is an issue of the desert yes so you're not keeping the dust out well that's why just for the silverware IKEA has these covers that go in so just for the silverware oh you wanted to see the toilet yes it's kind of unique it's called a Stan sport okay sta n SP ort and you got it on Amazon Amazon it is sturdy I mean it is solid and it's the right height and I can also use it as additional as a lot of people do but this is the better height for your body than a five-gallon bucket it really is and it's got a nice seat on it mm-hmm very comfortable very comfortable and this is a urine diverting system so this comes out this lid comes off you can just empty that and what you have is a nice little hollow and that's really good because you don't get skids in the bag and you know what I'm talking about when you take the lid off this is the same height so when you look for something that would fit in here look for something where this top part is lower because it's so comfortable right it's hard for women to to pee yes if they don't have a comfortable way to do it and so I love this one I got three bags here just this is the this is the business bag right this is the protection bag and it's just a double duty bag and I just stick that down in here and this that actually comes out I've never seen this before well there are ones where they have a separate bucket yeah yeah you don't want to mix me a solid solids and liquids that's the worst thing you do the worst thing this is just lift it out you take this outside and you go pour it the bed was attached to the ribs so the horizontal ribs I put I attached angle iron and then through quarter-inch plywood to that so that's the foundation of the bed so there's no legs legs use up room they affect what you can put under your bed and I didn't want shelves and things you had to pull out something to get to something to get to something so you're running solar just solar and how much sold you out I got 360 on the roof it's one panel mm-hmm and because I could add two there's room up there to add another one hmm because when I went to northern Arizona wind and Sun we talked about the various kinds of panels they have and I could gotten too 200 or close to 200 watts it wound up being $30 to buy the more expensive pale so again this creates electricity in lower levels than those regular panels do they're built sturdier so it's again best value for money right I can put two of them up there and get almost 700 watts mm-hmm so very good that's what I thought I would do so I have a thousand watt Pierce tiny inverter and only a hundred amp hour lithium battery but I'm going up on Thursday and I've just bought another 100 amp hour lithium battery and they're going to install it on Thursday for me so you talked a lot about those ceramic magnets they're cheap that's what I like but they break then they dust they do so my sister and I spent a wonderful Saturday afternoon making these little bags and they're easy to pull off they don't break they don't dust on things and I just keep them in a little bag I really like these a UTech solar-powered they're motion detectors they come on in the dark mm-hmm but they have various settings on them mm-hmm so and I put magnets on the back so I can't put them out for protection security but one of them just turns on and stays on so I can hook them up here and I've got solar powered inside light and man the light comes off there I can read from that light and I've bought two of them I don't need to have wires for lighting in here mm-hmm right so this is something that you've really found very useful what is it it's this I think it's pronounced swampy who knows and it's called a portable power pack it's got USB it's got twelve volt it's got 110 it has a light very bright very bright late but it can do this mmm-hmm and this thing will power my little refrigerator if it's fully charged it will power for 36 hours oh my goodness that's a lot that's a lot yeah just you would charge it while you drive I think well I didn't plug any into it and because this holds the cold so well and I made this little cover for it this cover was made with the curtain material that you put the insulated curtain material and it has reflectix in it so you got a great garage but lots of stuff I love these garages your beds just right height and still got all this storage right right out to the edge that seemed to make the most sense to me really good okay so you know I got room for tools and and so there's my thousand watt inverter pure sine inverter and my lithium battery and you can see I've got storage and they ran the guys around the wiring through the wheel wells and stuff so they did a beautiful installation job that is a great job right there yeah that was northern Arizona wind and Sun yeah yeah they do great work James I bought this watching you demonstrate solar showers huh and so this is a a Nemo you pump it up with your foot huh and I've loaned it to people they really like it and how do you take a shower I just well most the time I find you know showers paper okay for a shower that takes two gallons you put it out in the Sun and this is my shower potty tint pop-up pop-up simple you know I've got bear spray wasp brain aerosol horn and a big vicious looking pruning saw two heavy frying pans in a potty mouth sometimes you just found like you know what you're gonna do or that you can take care of yourself and that's all you need to do absolutely so confidence self confidence is your best weapon and the heavy pair of boots yes so tell us about your vehicle it's a dodge Promaster it's one of the short roofs it's not the city it's just the shorter roof I can't quite stand up in here so it's a 1500 six-cylinder it's gas it's front-wheel drive I like that better than the diesel it wasn't it you who said once you didn't like them because of where the tire was you were worried about the clearance the the back axle has low clearance yes but if you look at which is I did down on my hands and knees with a measuring tape I looked at the Sprinter and I looked at the transit and that differential because they're rear-wheel drive the differential comes down so low that they only have a half an inch more clearance than I do on mine yes that's true but you can aim so that the clearance the differential doesn't hit anything well I can do that with this too how goes all the way across I know but you just it's not that hard to figure out how to get those that angle you know you need some demolish geometry maybe but I have not found it a problem at all I've got our 10 in the ceiling and that was fun and I just kept putting insulation in the sides are twenty in the sides well massive and Weller thank you so much for sharing your home with us and your and your story I just really appreciate you and Evangel have done an amazing job folks I know you've got some great ideas here just full of great ideas especially the plexi glass all over the place class if you did like us on YouTube subscribe to the channel and we'll talk to you later you

30 thoughts on “**Insurance Turns Vandweller into an Outlaw. Canadian Masked Vandweller and Her Amazing Van Build**

  1. Ed Speanburgh

    This has been the opposite of my experience. I told them I was going to live in my rv fulltime and I paid progressive 15 dollars a month for insurance.

  2. VonBluesman

    Great interview and video. I never knew that about the insurance companies, they charged me more for my townhouse to sit empty and I even had to switch companies because they would not insure it with no one living in it, then when I did move in the premium was higher than my house even though it was valued at $50,000.00 less, they said the reason was because if one unit caught on fire the rest were subject to burn up. I said you think it would be cheaper with someone here 24/7 and the value being less than my house was. Seems like they do what they want, when Katrina hit, they raised rates for the entire state and said it was to make up for the losses occurred from Hurricane Katrina. I said that was unfair to people that live in the northern part of the state that didn’t receive damage and do not live in a high risk area on the Gulf Coast but they said if you want house insurance you have to pay the increase, the following year they did away with that charge and said you can get some of that money back but they made it too complicated of a process to go through, plus they put a very small time frame on applying for the partial refund. In the end they all put the screws to everyone, health insurance is another prime example. I know you have to have insurance but it sure would be nice if they paid for replacement cost and full cost of medical bills. Sorry for the rant, Friday late night blues and the truth hitting the fan. LOL 😂

  3. nicholas gabel

    Just tell them its a van to haul stuff around in , which is true.. You may have to get insurance for the contents if you dont have homeowners insurance. Should be no problem .

  4. ***CDB****

    Who was that delightful Canadian masked vandit? She's an awesome gal, so intelligent, charming and savvy. Her van is as colorful as she is. She is full of innovative ideas and is an inspiration to us all. The quilting work in it is really great. Bob, you have this knack for finding treasures and your interviews are always so informative and entertaining. Another feather in your cap. Heartfelt thanks.

  5. Janice Mckinnie

    As usual Bob, informative post. The masked person is delightful. Thank you both and you Bob, an extra thank you for your dedication to humanity. You help to balance out our world. One last thing…after you mentioned Tioga George, I looked him up and binge watched a number of his videos. He was amazing, as you are. Best wishes in all that you do.


    Loved her storage ideas. IKEA is awesome. I already have some of those items. Just need my van now. 🙂

  7. Russell Pottenger

    What a sweet lady.
    You can tell she would be a blast to share stories with around the campfire.

  8. Creative Hearts

    Don’t blame her at all…makes you think, how everybody on this channel goes head over heels in putting their selfs and personal information all there..

  9. ILoveHorses❤🐎

    The bureaucrats have just made it so terribly hard on the poor, disabled, mobile dwellers….makes me angry.

  10. Anne McDonley

    She has done a marvelous job with her van, kudos to her! Very storage efficient, great insulation, solar, just everything is well thought out. Congratulations to her and best wishes. Thanks for sharing her story.

  11. Jill K

    a lot of very different ideas.. Nice 🙂 And,,,, i wish i could see/understand how she used the Plexiglas. i cant really tell how it's being used.but see many are impressed.

  12. Jay Harter

    Did I Understand Bob correctly? that one is NOT able to obtain insurance on a van that has been converted to an RV in the USA? Does anyone know if that would also apply to a box truck or a cargo trailer? as that is what I am considering, one or the other, not sure yet, but leaning towards a box truck. I guess one could always carry commercial insurance, staying off the highways to avoid weigh stations.

  13. Scott from Maine

    I found it to be a nightmare to insure my van without being a business owner. It's tempting to set up an LLC but that has issues too. Bob, you ought to do a video with your insurance agent friend about insuring self-built vans

  14. richard c

    I think she is the one who hit the lottery for $10 million! So what happens if she has a claim and the agent finds its a conversion van, she will not be covered.

  15. Lauri Rohr

    You go girl!
    Clearly she listened to your great videos Bob…and had some great ideas herself.
    I am also an honest person, however I wont be offering any info when I insure…thats for certain.
    I hear you.
    Happy travels masked Nomad👍

  16. unchained20000000

    Them Canadians are great at survival, Canada is a harsh environment in the winter. Fight the power masked van dweller. Semper Fi.

  17. Julie Hanson

    I live in Texas. I live fulltime in my 5th wheel in an RV park. I was able to obtain non traveling rv insurance.
    It wasn't easy……had to make lots of calls. Some of the company's premiums were absolutely off the charts expensive!
    It must be state by state. And of course different from Canada.

  18. buggeroff

    Strange how different countries and insurance companies work . In the UK it is very easy to reregister a commercial van to a campervan or motorhome and there are a large number of insurance companies to choose from . I pay £220 a year for full comprehensive insurance or about $300 American for a converted commercial van reregistered as a motorhome .


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