The idea of living life on the open road, making your home anywhere you choose, can be a very appealing thought, especially if you have spent the last few decades of your life bound by the responsibilities of work and raising your family. Many people are happily living the full-time RV lifestyle, but like most choices that are of an unconventional nature, it is not for everyone and there are important considerations to be taken into account before taking the plunge. What seems great in our heads does not always play out so well in reality. Here are some things to think about if you are considering life on the road 24/7:
Are Both Parties on Board 100 Percent?
If you are part of a couple, the importance of both of you being on board 100 percent cannot be overstated. There will be lots of compromise and sacrifice, all taking place within a very small area to boot. If one of you is not totally gung-ho about this lifestyle, the consequences can be disastrous. If you have any inkling that your spouse may be going along with the plan simply to make you happy, you need to have an open and honest discussion about it.
Purchasing Your RV
This is not a decision to be taken lightly or made in haste. There are so many things to consider when purchasing an RV for full-time living, and while I cannot cover everything in detail in this one section, here is just a taste to get the wheels turning. First and foremost, do your research to learn about the different vehicles available to you. Look around—go to wholesale RV dealers, RV shows, meet with private sellers. Many in the know would recommend against purchasing a vehicle at a show—it is easy to get caught up in the excitement and fall prey to an aggressive salesmen.
Crunching numbers is also a must. When deciding how much RV you can afford, you have to take into account all aspects of your financial picture. How much do you spend on food and other necessities? Do you have health insurance premiums or any debts? And don’t forget about estimating how much you will be spending on fuel.
When considering how much room you think you will need, do you plan on spending a lot of time in warm climates where you will be outside a lot or will you be frequenting areas where you will be spending a lot of time inside because it is colder? Are you okay with a pull-out bed that serves as a couch by day, or do you want a regular bed? Most people living the full-time life suggest buying the biggest RV you can afford—this is your home after all.
Issues of Lifestyle
Living full-time in an RV is certainly a unique lifestyle. Like any mode of living, there are advantages and disadvantages. First and foremost, do you really think you can handle living in a small space, especially if you are sharing it? Having traveled extensively with my fiancée, I have found that living in studio apartments just does not work for me; living in an RV with him? No way Jose. The space issue also means a more bare bones existence. Think carefully about what you can and cannot live without.
About the Author: Kelli Cooper is a freelance writer who blog about all things related to travel.