The Transition to RV Fulltiming – Factors to Consider

The decision to live full time in an RV is not one that should be taken lightly.  The transition from brick and mortar – also ‘stick house’ living to full-timing in a recreational vehicle entails a lot of lifestyle changes. These are some of the many factors you will need to think about if you are considering adopting the RV lifestyle. There is certainly a lot involved in making the transition, so it is well advised to thoroughly research what is involved before making the leap. Preliminary Research in preparation for RV living. One good investment for people considering moving into a recreational vehicle is to subscribe to magazines ahead of time.  Publications such as trailer life magazine can provide lots of insight into exactly what life living in an RV full time is like, and can also be a great source of information about different types of RV’s available for purchase. The Trailer Life Campground Directory campground directory is a perennial favorite with RVers, and well worth purchasing. Membership in one of the many RV clubs – the Good Sam Club is a very popular one – is another great way to immerse yourself in the RVing world even before you leave home.  Even if you do not yet own an RV, there is a lot of fun to be had just flicking through these types of materials daydreaming about the day when you will make the transition. What do I do with my possessions? Cars, clothing and furniture; there are just a few of the items you will have to find a home for when you downsize from a regular full-sized house to a small coach or travel trailer.  While you can – and will – keep some of your clothes for life on the road, space limitations mean that you will more than likely have to cut back on your wardrobe. How about your furnishings?  There is no place for a three piece sofa sets or dining room tables in a travel trailer.  Along with your clothes, you will have to come up with a way of dealing with these when you start RVing full time also. As for your automobiles, there is a good chance they are inappropriate for RV living also.  If you will be towing you require a large truck with a towing capacity large enough to tow a big trailer or a fifth wheel motorhome.  On the other hand, if you purchase a motor-coach you may want to keep a small vehicle for use as a toad vehicle. Clearly all these superfluous personal possessions need to be handled somehow.  One option is to simply sell everything.  The advantage of this is that you can potentially raise quite a bit of cash, which can come in handy in covering some of the upfront costs associated with the transition to full-time RVing. An alternative is to simply store your belongings.  This can either be in a secure storage facility – which entails a hefty monthly […] Read more »

Stealthy VanDwelling – An Alternative To A Traditional RV

Why Stealth RVing? Some people love the idea of living in an RV, but don’t have the money – job, savings, or pension – to support it.  One option available to folks in this situation is to try and live an ultra-frugal RV lifestyle. One of the largest costs for many ‘traditional’ (I’m not sure that is really the right word for anyone who lives in a recreational vehicle, but I will use it nevertheless) is the cost of campgrounds of RV park sites. While it is possible to find cheap or even free sites in some place, many times they will have restrictions as to how long you can say.  Also, sometimes these lower priced sites are not in a great location – they may be way out in the middle of nowhere, next to a loud interstate or railroad, or in a somewhat dodgy urban neighborhood. Why A Van? The way some people get around having to pay for camping sites at all is by choosing to live a lifestyle heavily dependent on stealth parking.  The main requirement in order to be able to do this successfully is possession of an RV that does not look like an RV.  For this vans are ideal! A van can look very commercial.  This means they can be parked many places inconspicuously where a regular RV would stand out like a sore thumb.  People who own vans can frequently get away with spending a night for free in an office district or near a warehouse without drawing unwanted attention from the authorities. What Type of Van? I am not talking about a Class B Motorhome like those from Roadtrek, which are blatantly residential – I mean a regular commercial van.  Preferably a white one that is in good shape, if it has some decals indicating it belongs to some kind of business so much the better. You should also avoid buying a van that looks…well…creepy.  We are all familiar with the stereotype of the beat-up panel van that looks like it belongs in an episode of Law & Order – SVU.  If you are going to live in a van buy one that looks respectable. The intent is that the local police or sheriff won’t figure out you are actually inside that van parked on the side of the road.  The hope is that if the van catches their eye they will just figure it belongs to a local business and not be bothered by it. How to Avoid Hassles from the Authorities While your presence – as long as you behave yourself and don’t make a mess – really does any harm to anyone, a lot of people will be uncomfortable at the idea of someone living in a van, especially nearby.  While I will leave the psychology of this for another article, it is fact that you will have to deal with anytime you stealth camp anywhere people are likely to observe your vehicle. An attractive vehicle is an […] Read more »