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Pass man turns old school bus into a new home

Published: Jun. 24, 2018 at 7:46 PM CDT|Updated: Jun. 24, 2018 at 11:04 PM CDT
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PASS CHRISTIAN, MS (WLOX) - Twenty-three-year-old Colton O'Neal is on his way to becoming a new homeowner. He saved $2,000 to pay for the old yellow school bus that he'll soon call home.

Once he's finished remodeling it in the next few months, he'll be able make it official. "You never really crossed my mind until I saw the people being able to do this sort of thing on YouTube and whatnot," said O'Neal

High student loan debt, combined with the rising cost of living and trying to live off typically low salaries has a lot of Millennials looking to new ways to survive in the adult world.

Living in a small converted spaces with little personal possessions, or Minimalism, is one of those ways. "This kind of option of owning my own home it's tiny and only use a little bit of power seems like a good idea to pay off those student loans in the meantime," added O'Neal.

O'Neal is estimating the entire project to cost less than $15,000. He's been using sites like Facebook Marketplace to find gently used appliances and furnishings, and is relying mostly on recycled materials to get the job done on a budget.

"I bought a hot water heater for really cheap, I got all the insulation in here for really cheap and a lot of the building materials too."

The bus will be parked on a lot that O'Neal bought. He says by not having to worry about paying rent or a mortgage, he can focus on his student loans and his gas bills. He's installing solar panels on the roof to save energy, and is building a well on the property to draw water from.

Financial advisors say that while Millennials are using the little money they have in creative ways, a long-term investment like traditional home ownership isn't far-fetched.

"They are a little surprised that with a little bit of planning, and put a little away now for the future, that home ownership or a sizable down payment is a fairly attainable type goal," said Al Bloir, a financial advisor with First Command Financial Services.

No matter how attainable a house with a little picket fence is, Colton's motto is "Have less and live more." That's exactly what he plans on doing in his humble 4-wheeled abode.

You can track the progress of the project on the bus's Facebook and Instagram page, @kcsunshinebus.

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