Are Campervan Conversion Companies Worth It?

Are Campervan Conversion Companies Worth It?

When we began dreaming of vanlife, one of the first questions my fiancé and I asked ourselves was, ‘are campervan conversion companies worth it’. We used to dream of building our own rig, but were living in downtown Chicago at the time. Even if we had a driveway, shoveling snow off of our workplace half the year seemed like quite the challenge. Hiring an upfitter was the right choice for us, and we hit the road much sooner because of this decision. If you’re weighing your options, you owe it to yourself to learn more about hiring an expert upfitter like SD Campervans to help you complete your campervan conversion.


From Dream To Home

Here’s a quick outline of the SDCV process from start to finish:

  1. Schedule an initial inquiry call

  2. Initial design conversation: we’ll discuss your intentions and design ideas

  3. Specialty consultations: we may schedule a custom layout or electrical consultation with our production team

  4. Proposal: you’ll receive a comprehensive build proposal. At this stage, you can explore options and upgrades

  5. Deposit: your deposit secures your conversion on our production calendar

  6. Drop off: our team is ready to start your conversion! You’ll drop off your van at our LA warehouse, meet the team and review final details

  7. Build: we convert your campervan in two months or less

  8. Pick up: you’ll make your final payment, and we’ll give you a full walkthrough before handing over the keys to your new home.

  9. Drive off on your newest adventure

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What To Expect From Your Upfitter: The Initial Inquiry

When researching companies, feel free to shop around. Each company will have a slightly different intake process, but one of the most important things is to make sure your point of contact is deeply knowledgeable about the breadth of lifestyles vanlife can encompass. One good indication of this is that they ask you lots of questions to get to know your goals for your home on wheels.

Planning to live and work full time? Our modular dinette layout will ensure you can bunker down or entertain. Maybe the adrenaline junkie in you needs more of a gear hauler. Our fixed platform bed layout with its roomy garage space might be clutch for you. Maybe you might need a roof rack, or maybe you don’t need that compost toilet, or or or. The permutations are as diverse as the community itself, and we’re here to help funnel your great ideas! SDCV was founded by vanlifers for vanlifers, so ask us your most purposeful questions. Guiding potential newbies, learning about their ideal lifestyle, and helping actualize that dream…these are the things that keep us fulfilled here at SDCV.

What If I Have Something Different In Mind? Customizations and Speciality Consultations!

If your vision isn’t quite fitting into the mold of our standard floor plans...we love that! It’s your space, after all. Our custom layout consultation will elegantly marry vision and budget. We encourage you to dream big. This conversation will help us nail down what is realistic and affordable.

Additionally, we may recommend an electrical consultation. We can power everything you have in mind. Your homework is to research the unit specifications of everything you want to power; brand, wattage, even simple pictures can help inform us about how much juice your new home needs! Once we’ve sifted through all that together, you can expect a proposal with a link to tinker with your floor plan options and any desired upgrades.


What If I Don’t Need a Full Build? Insulation, Electrical and Solar Packages

Maybe your’re handier than most, and don’t want/need to relinquish that much of the creative process. I’ll reiterate: it’s your space! Ask us about the SDCV Starter Package. Even experienced contractors will find insulation, paneling, electrical installation to be a different beast in a moving vehicle, so outsourcing these components to a veteran production team will speed up your build and ensure things are done right the first time. Our access to commercial grade materials will ensure that your van is ready for the rugged lifestyle you’re about to embark on.


The Build Itself

After finalizing an invoice, a $1000 deposit will secure your spot in our build calendar. You can expect a final consultation with our build team when you drop-off your Mercedes Sprinter, Ram Promaster, or Ford Transit at our Los Angeles warehouse.  Once we’ve reached this stage of the process, the design is finalized and drastic changes cannot be made. However, maybe you’ve decided to go ahead and add that extra solar panel, or changed your mind to a more eclectic interior color. We can incorporate these minor tweaks, just be sure to address them at drop-off to avoid fees or delays. During the build, we’ll check in with you frequently with progress updates, but we also encourage you to call any time mid-build with any questions or concerns! Getting you on the road is our shared priority.



Your New Home! Pick Up Day


As your delivery day approaches (and it can often be much sooner than our guaranteed two month turnaround), we will keep you informed about how Pick Up Day will work. This exciting moment can be overwhelming! How do you reverse the fan? Where does the grey water go? Compost toilet?! There are a lot of unfamiliar features for first time vanlifers. Rest assured, we’ll give you a full orientation of every nook and cranny in your new home. Feel ready to drive off into the sunset yet?



Long-Term Support


Naturally, even our comprehensive walkthrough can’t cover everything. Vanlife has a learning curve, and we understand the challenges you can run into long after you drive off our lot. Whether it’s the next day or years down the line, please use us as a resource to navigate the inevitable questions that will pop up!  We will supply you with instruction manuals for any appliance incorporated into your rig, and any of the warranties for their specific brands apply. Additionally, there is a one-year warranty on any components SDCV personally constructed. We want you to feel prepared and ready for this new adventure.

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Ready to get started?


We know that hiring a company like SD Campervans to perform your campervan conversion is a major decision. Rest-assured, our team of expert craftsman are ready to get to work creating your home on wheels. If you are excited about turning your dreams of vanlife into reality, contact us now! We’re ready to build you the campervan you’ve always wanted.

Want to learn more about campervan conversions?

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