With 50 years around the sun, Kimberly enjoys sharing a variety of her personal life experiences with others.
Our Search for a Budget-Friendly Used Camper
Have you guys seen how outrageously expensive pre-owned camp trailers have become since the world pandemic?
My husband and I were in the market for a budget-friendly camper. Much of what we could find was overpriced or unavailable.
We had been searching for months for the right deal to cross our paths. One sunny summer day in the middle of July (2021) we decided to go to the big city and inquire about pre-owned campers for sale.
We got shot down by one sales center after another. Most of the RV lots laughed at our $10,000 budget. We had cash in hand, and could have made a nice down payment on something new; however, we had both agreed we didn't want to incur another monthly payment.
Our Camper Criteria
We knew what we were looking for in a camper. It needed to have adequate room for the two of us, and a working air conditioner, heater and fridge. It needed to have a clean title and be structurally sound. We would have liked a floorplan that included a stationary bed, but this wasn't going to be a deal breaker.
We took our criteria to Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist. We scoured the internet and ended up responding to an ad for a camper that was located one state away from us.
We met with the person selling this particular camper. Knowing we could make small renovations, we liked what we saw and signed on the dotted line.
My Obsession with Turquoise
Funny little background story, I learned something new about myself through this camper searching process.
While searching online for our camper I came across an old vintage truck camper, a 1979 to be exact. I absolutely fell in love with the online pictures. I was looking at a small camper with absolutely zero amenities. No toilet, shower, heater, or air conditioning.
I obsessed over this cute little thing. It finally hit me that it was the interior turquoise décor that grabbed my attention and wouldn't let me stop thinking about it.
I literally dreamed about this camper! The price was much kinder and well within my cash friendly budget. My dear wise husband said, "ABSOLUTELY NO WAY" would we be buying that old of a camper and without amenities. He told me he would buy me a bucket of turquoise paint and that I could paint whatever we bought that met our criteria.
Original Interior Décor
We bought the 2001 Layton Camp Trailer in its original décor. It was surprisingly well kept with the exception of some wrinkled wall paper. The camper was structurally sound and all of its appliances worked exceptionally well.
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My Bucket of Paint
My husband was true to his word and I got my bucket of turquoise paint. The camper make-over began at once. I wiped down all surface areas of the camper. I then took all the cupboard doors and drawers out of their places and painted everything from top to bottom. My camper interior was getting a great splash of Fog White and Turquoise paint throughout.
Below you'll find the side-by-side comparison pictures of the before and after renovations.
A Colorful New Beginning
Renovating the Interior
The floorplan of this camper came with built in bunk beds. It wasn't long before we converted the bunk bed area into storage and closet space. We purchased a brightly colored shower curtain to use as a closet covering. This created a new useable space in which we added storage drawers and a hanging rod in which to hold some clothing.
We also removed the dining area nook and turned the space into a stationary bedroom. My husband removed the dining area platform and built in a plywood base that would fit a queen-sized mattress. We purchased a very cozy memory foam mattress for the conversion. The fit was comfortable when surrounded by the existing dining room cushions.
It was much more important to us to have a stand-alone bed space than to have a dining nook.
We enjoy most of our meals are outdoors, weather permitting of course. We carry a round table with us for use when picnic tables aren't available or provided. We may also use our table in addition to what has been provided by any given campsite, allowing us more room to spread out.
On occasion we use a small fold-out table inside the camper and set it up with one person sitting on the edge of the bed while the other sits across the table in front of the bed. This provides a perfect dining space for two.
Outdoor Cooking and Dining
Blessed are the curious for they shall have adventures.
— Lovelle Drachman
We also affixed a small whiteboard for communication and camping notes. Our daughter happened to visit and left us a special note of her own.
Vibrant and Alive With Color
Painting the interior of the camper really brought it to life. The turquoise color created a warm and inviting camping space. The new make-over proved to be much more pleasing to our senses and created an area that remains vibrant and alive.
My husband tended to the exterior camper renovations. He wet-washed the rims and used steel wool before applying lacquer to seal them. Next he painted the hubcaps a turquoise color to match the interior.
He removed and remounted the spare tire bracket, making adequate room for the generator. My husband and father went to work on welding a new platform in place for the 3500 W generator to be mounted on the back of the camper. A perfect fit!
My husband also went through all the electrical, verified that everything worked properly, checked the water tanks, and took care of all the finer details.
We purchased a custom-created vinyl decal to go over our window covering. We were very satisfied with our design.
We found J.R.Vinyl Creations' services to be affordable, friendly, and a custom fit indeed.
A Successful Camper Make-Over
All in all, we were very satisfied with our camp trailer purchase and renovations.
We spent the summer of 2021 camping and adventuring throughout the Pacific Northwest. Follow our journey through the Olympic Peninsula of Washington State.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2021 Kimberly