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  • Writer's pictureS & S

Four Things We've Learned Since Becoming Full-Time RV Lifers...

Updated: Dec 16, 2022

One day we just decided it was a good time to run away. We soon discovered that running away as adults is very different than when you were five years old and threatened to run away because you were denied dessert for not eating your green beans at dinner. In the latter scenario you simply grab your best toys and run out the back door while your mom watches closely; it is a whole different scenario when you own a home and have a lot of stuff.

One - Have a Plan (Maybe crunch some numbers)

The first thing we learned is that having a plan - or at least a checklist - is everything. Too many tasks with too many dependencies and time constraints meant a spreadsheet was in order! When we decided to put our house on the market, it was a little late in the real estate

season, but the market was hot so we couldnt wait. Getting the house ready was far more work than we had ever imagined. What our adult children didnt want, we gave to the community. We didnt have time to sell very much, and we carefully considered what we were willing to pay to put in storage - we have a 10x15 storage unit and had a 3300 sq ft house.

We also had to line up the purchase of the motorhome and the Jeep before our departure so we had a place to live! If we had not had that spreadsheet, we would never have gotten everything done. The bonus is, we listed out all tax-deductible expenses there as well, which will come in handy soon!

Two - How do we "adult" on the road?

There are A LOT of things to consider and take care of when you do not have a legal address... like obtaining a legal address.

We had tons of questions: Where will we get our mail? We ordered 70% of our purchases online - what now? Where will we hold drivers licenses, insurance, car registrations? What does it mean to have residency vs. domicile? What we found is that there is a company called Escapees that offers mail service and domicile support, among many other services for RV Lifers. You will have to make some decisions, but you do have choices. Florida, Texas and South Dakota are popular choices for RV Lifers for various reasons, but you will have to research which works best for your specific situation (start with the Escapees website).

As far as package delivery goes, check with the places you will be staying ahead of time to see if you can have deliveries straight to your site. Many places do offer it, some charge a small fee. Then - you have to plan ahead depending on how long you will be staying to ensure you will still be around when your packages come. You can also opt for locker deliveries - Amazon, Lowes, FedEx and UPS are among the growing number of companies who offer this option- but you still have to know where you will be. Also - if you are short - you can check the handicapped box on your Amazon delivery and they will not deliver to the lockboxes that are seven feet high...

Three - You REALLY dont need it all

You will only need a fraction of what you think you will. We packed way more than we needed and in the first 3 months realized that some of the things we packed we will never use. You really dont need much more to live comfortably than what you can fit in a large RV (maybe even a small van for some people) You may think you do, but really you dont.

I started thinking about what we packed in storage. Even though that space is less than 10% of the size of our house, Im still wondering why we thought we needed to keep all of that stuff. Then I realized most of what we kept was for emotional reasons, not for necessity. Consider each item you pack and whether you will really use it, or you just want it to be with you. Its ok to have some things that fall into the latter category of course, but not half of what you take with you.

Four - Book Intelligently (Yes, more planning)

Plan with the weather, location and events in mind, especially if you are "bucket listing". One

of the tabs on our spreadsheet is a list of places and events we want to experience. Why wait? Well, as much as it may seem like a good idea to hit as much as possible all at once... sigh... there is more planning and foresight involved in ensuring you will have a great experience. If you have to, pin your adventures out on a map and then write the dates of the events in each location. Generally big events are held in good weather months, but you also have to think about the stops in between. While you could Harvest Host your way across the country to get to your goal, you can check more boxes if you plan the time in between.

All of that said, be sure you contingency plan some unplanned time. I know its the opposite of what I just stated, but you WILL meet some fabulous people along the way who WILL have fabulous recommendations for some fabulous stops you didnt plan for.


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1 Comment

Dec 17, 2022

What a wonderful story.! Keep on keepin' on. Your life is your ticket to all the happiness you'll ever need and it appears you're doing a wonderful job at it. Happy trails to two wonderful travelers. God Bless!

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