Your reason #1 is the reason I started with a fixer upper from craigslist. I have something that with a little bit of work can be used now even if its old and ugly. I can then work on replacing a part at a time over a longer period of time by building a new part then swapping it for the old. For example when I first got it i measured and duplicated the kitchen counter then swapped it out. Then did the roof one side at a time., then went on to the back door then the back wall then the floor and cabinets. I make each new section and then replace the old. So I have a pattern to copy off of and hold the new up against to check before removing whats there.
Yes I had a little more up front cost buying the old camper but I also was able to skip all the design and trial and error for the layout because I have an existing layout and can just make changes or improvements to it. And if I were in a state where i had to register a camper then i can show its still a repaired palimino bronco instead of having to go through any home designed paperwork,
2004 Chevrolet Silverado ECSB z71
1982 Palomino Bronco 186