How to convert a campervan in Ireland

The Irish Campervan Boom​

 

The #VanLife movement has exploded in Ireland over the past few years. People are seeking freedom and simplicity, in a time when everything seems hard and complicated. Spurred on by social media and travel bans, 1000's of campervans were bought and sold in Ireland in 2020, bringing in a new age of domestic wandering. 

In this article, we will look at the key things to be aware of when converting a campervan in Ireland. 

  • Buying your van

  • Purchasing supplies

  • How to get your van on the road

Buying your van

There are three primary options on where to purchase your van from:

1. Online

The best sites for purchasing vans online in Ireland are:

2. Used Car Dealership

Used car dealerships are scattered throughout the country, many can even be found selling through the online sites mentioned above.

Some dealerships include:

3. Van Dealership

If you have the cash lying around, it can be nice knowing that you have a brand new van that will last you a long time. No inheriting other people's problems.

Here are some of the biggest van dealers in Ireland:

Before Buying your Van

If you have chosen to buy your van online or from a used car dealership, make sure to do your due diligence.

  1. Check the VIN number on AutoCheck be sure to get a mechanic / engineer to check it out before you head out. 

You can also think about buying your van from Northern Ireland, there have been some pretty good deals going up there since Brexit talks began!

https://www.autotrader.co.uk/vans/used-vans/northern-ireland

Once you have built your camper you are only about halfway there, the next step is to get it on the road.Okay, so you've built your campervan and now you want to get it on the road - well 

There's more to converting a van than just 

I just thought I would share with you all the exact steps needed as Im sure many of you are confused about this process..

  1. Get an SQI Engineer to look over your camper (he will give you a certificate saying it is safe, also the forms to send into revenue)

  2. Book you CVRT test for a month out (the waiting list is long and this give you time to get everything in order)

  3. Send all documentation to revenue including:

    1. SQI Engineers report

    2. 10 photos of campervan (6 inside / 4 outside)

    3. Declaration of conversion (SQI gives you this) - you need to put estimated total cost of conversion on this - Total from all receipts)

    4. Copy of ALL receipts of everything that was used in the conversion

4) After about 10 days you will hopefully recieve confirmation that revenue are happy with your conversion and a request to pay VRT by bank draft. The VRT is 13.3% of the estimated current value of vehicle (cost of van of similar age + cost of conversion). To give you an Idea, I paid ~1600Euro in VRT, so they estimated my current value was about 12300Euro. Go to your bank, get a bank draft and send it by mail to Revenue in Rosslare harbour, Wexford.

5) After a couple days you will recieve Confirmation of assessment of declaration of concersion. THEY HAVE RECIEVED THE PAYMENT AND ALL IS GOOD IN THE WORLD. OH WAIT...

6) Time to insure yourself. Dolmens require a walkway between front and back, but don't require 5 years no claims. Stuarts insurance requires 5 years no claims, but doesnt require a walkway. All the other requirements are needed (6ft high, window, cooking, bed, etc, etc). Oh an Campervan club of Ireland require neither but are about twice the price.

7) You need to bring the van into the Motor tax office in Smithfield so they can look over the van. When they are happy, you will pay the motor tax and then you recieve the new logbook for the vehicle stating that the class has changed from Commercial (C) to campervan (M1)

8) Final step, go get a CVRT test. They need you to be registered as a camper class (M1) first. CVRT by the way, is the equivalent of the NCT for commerical vehicles.

Happy days. Stress over. This whole project has cost me sooooo much money. But IT WAS SO WORTH IT. Living full time rent free now

Hope this might have helped.

- Why build a campervan

- Get DIY skills

- CAN be cheaper than purchasing one

- Totally custom

- Sell for a profit

 

- Cost more (15k)

- Take longer (6 months)

 

- Research legal first

- research insurance first

- Link to Converting a camper in Ireland blog

 

- Pay tax & CVRT & VRT

 

- Link to how to choose a campervan

 

- cost breakdown

- Half the price of the van on the conversion itself

 

Buying your van:

- Look up the VIN number (autocheck)

- Engineer to look it over (rust?)

- Logbook, service history,

- How many previous owners were there and what was the van used for

- Age + mileage -> number of miles per year - <100k