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What Is The Biggest Drawback To Living Full Time In An RV?


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#1 TBUTLER

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Posted 04 September 2009 - 10:47 PM

We'd be less than truthful if we said we had no regrets after going full time. There may be the lucky few who miss nothing from their previous lifestyle but I suspect most of us have some lingering desire for some aspects of our previous life.

From time to time there are possessions that I miss. A rock and fossil collection that my grandchildren would enjoy. My old easy to assemble telescope. My collection of topographic maps. An occasional book or other resource I used to have. Louise misses a home to decorate with art objects and memorabilia. We had many friends from our past but we can still visit with them several times a year which is about as often as we used to see them.

Life used to be predictable and routine. We used to fit into a category. We lived in a sticks and bricks house and our circumstances took no explaining. Now we are the exception to everyone's experience. We move frequently, not every year or two, every month or two, frequently more often.

We're recently involved in a variety of maintenance and repair projects. We won't be here forever so our time line for these actions is different than those used to dealing with sticks and bricks homes. The movie "The Money Pit" described a remodeling project that took forever. We don't have that luxury. Our remodeling has to happen this week and next week. We want to be gone the week following. The old axiom about a kitchen remodeling taking two weeks but no one said they would be 14 consecutive days hits home here. Amazing to me is the fact that even people who deal with, even make their money from RV'ers are quite unprepared to deal with full timers who are on the go.

We have been without satellite service for almost two weeks now. Our dish suddenly quit working last week. As soon as we had a stable location we visited a local service center. Now, the end of the week, we have no answer. The tech who examined our KVH dish determined it was not a repair he could make. His inability to communicate with KVH technicians has locked the problem in repair purgatory. I called KVH today and waited 25 minutes to talk to a technical representative. He needs to talk to the local technician who analyzed our problem. The case dropped into another black hole. When will we get this dish fixed? Is anyone impressed by the quality of local broadcast HD TV? Yeah its a pretty picture when you can get it. I think it's the end of broadcast TV. Broadcast TV will become a vestigial remnant of the past. It is just a matter of time.

We used to belong to that "normal" group of people who will be here today and here tomorrow. Now we are here today and gone tomorrow. Now when I need some repairs, I have to surrender my home to a repair shop. We'll have some painting done next week. On Tuesday we'll drive to the paint shop and they have promised the project will be finished on Friday. The refrigerator must be emptied and we have to shut down everything using electric to preserve the batteries. Everything of value should be secured or removed. Then we just have to hope and trust. It's a lot different than having a house where service people visit while you are there to supervise. Now you can't even get into the shop while they service your rig because of "insurance requirements."

So you would guess that we're ready to give it up. No, I can't imagine another way to live. All these tribulations are temporary, given a week or two and they will be all but forgotten. We'll be down the road visiting other children and grandchildren. We'll be reading about snowstorms and cold weather and playing tennis and golf every week.

So what is it that you regret after going full time? Share your thoughts.
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Tom and Louise Butler
2004 Monaco Windsor, Cummins 400 ISL
Roadmaster Sterling Tow Bar, Brakemaster, GMC Acadia, BikeE Recumbent Bicycles

After 9 1/2 years full time in our motor home and being Winter Texans we are now living at Sandpipers Resort in Edinburg, Texas. Now we are Summer Chickens!

"The tipi is much better to live in; always clean and warm in winter, cool in summer, easy to move... If the Great Spirit wanted men to live in one place he would have made the world stand still." -- Flying Hawk, South Dakota Oglala Sioux


#2 Chickadee

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Posted 08 September 2009 - 09:51 AM

Tom & Louise: (Dang!!!..still can't figure out how to enlarge text!!!)

Anyway, I sure appreciate your realistic perspective on things. We've lived and traveled in our MH since 05, having sold ALL before departing on this lifestyle. And....occasionally I catch myself fondly recalling some task, or some item of "stuff" we had that I kinda miss. For example, (and I can't believe I'm saying this ohmy.gif ), I used to LOVE being out on a winters evening shoveling snow from the walks and driveway of our home in Duluth, Minnesota. Often other neighbors were out shoveling or blowing snow at the same time, and, if it was still snowing, the falling flakes in the light of the streetlamps made for a wonderful experience. Would I go back for more????.......nope!!!.....but it was fun. OH,.......also,......I really miss by ol leaf blower from time to time. I really enjoyed clean up after cutting and trimming our lawn back then. Dumb...EH??

Don't know if there are any other drawbacks to this full time RVing lifestyle.....other than getting a case of the "blues" once in awhile.....I guess kinda like the character Lee Marvin played in the movie Paint Your Wagon talked about. But I don't think occasonal "blues" are something that living in a single place would prevent.....especially as we get older....and....older :rolleyes:

There IS, one....(I guess ya might say)....disappointment about full time RVing which I occasionally think about, and that has to do with a diminishing sense of excited wanderlust the more places we go. I recall a real sense of excitement when we used to thumb through road atlases planning where we might take a trip during our next vacation from work. Now, since we've been on the road and free to go, and have gone, anywhere, more and more places start to seem pretty much the same.....THAT IS, EXCEPT FOR ALASKA!!!!! biggrin.gifbiggrin.gif Kinda getting like Lee Marvin's character said in Paint Your Wagon,........"then people come in and gum it up good!!!"

Aw, well. Enough!! Steve


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#3 TBUTLER

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Posted 08 September 2009 - 12:39 PM

Steve,

You have to put the markers before and after the bold lettering. HA! I got it to work! Do that by highlighting the text to be bold and then hit the bold b... If you hit the bold b before typing it puts two b's together so it turns on and turns off the bold right together. Anything typed after that is going to be normal text. You won't see the bold until you post your comment. That is the reason for my exclamation! Had to try it several times to get it right.

Thanks for the great response. Funny, not dumb, that we think about some of the things that we were tired of when we decided to go full time. I also loved/hated shoveling snow. There was a certain vigor about being out in the cold and clearing the driveway and walk. It made you feel like you were accomplishing something and the results were visible. I think more than anything I would like to be young and vigorous enough to be willing to take on shoveling snow again. As for the grass, I mowed lawns throughout my teens in the days when you mowed with a push mower. I've had a lifetime of mowing grass! Glad to put that behind me.

I agree, after 8 years on the road the traveling becomes more routine. We have a few areas still high on our list to explore but they are getting harder and harder to get to. We visit all our children and grandchildren at least once a year and that dominates our travel agenda. In between we have time to ourselves. When we have a chance to get away without a specific agenda and no immediate deadline, those are the most relaxing and fun.

Tom
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Tom and Louise Butler
2004 Monaco Windsor, Cummins 400 ISL
Roadmaster Sterling Tow Bar, Brakemaster, GMC Acadia, BikeE Recumbent Bicycles

After 9 1/2 years full time in our motor home and being Winter Texans we are now living at Sandpipers Resort in Edinburg, Texas. Now we are Summer Chickens!

"The tipi is much better to live in; always clean and warm in winter, cool in summer, easy to move... If the Great Spirit wanted men to live in one place he would have made the world stand still." -- Flying Hawk, South Dakota Oglala Sioux


#4 bobnfreda

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Posted 05 October 2009 - 10:35 PM

started out thinking we would Full Time for two years and find a place to settle down to vacation type travel ;BUT after 18 years we still haven't found that place and can only stay in a campground less than three week and have to move on. we have too many friends in motor homes and they become like an extention of our family. Maybe it is because we have kid in California, Nebraska,Iowa and Ohio with grand-kids in additional states of Washington, Pennslyvania, Illionis, and Florida. We travel coast to coast at least twice a year, we attend at least four rallies a year and went eleven years without missing a FMCA Convention.November 1 we start our second trip from Florida to California for this year via Georgia. For a grandsons granduation for US Army basic training. We will stop and camp in Texas and Arizonia to visit former Full Timers who have had to hang it up because of health. So it is "On the Road Again."
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#5 TBUTLER

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Posted 06 October 2009 - 11:33 AM

Bob and Freda,

Enjoyed your note. Eighteen years full time! But how else could you get around to see all the children and grandchildren? What a great lifestyle being full time is. I can't imagine giving it up until I am forced to by health or finances. Enjoy your trip. Maybe we'll see you on the road. We're leaving California the end of the month headed to Texas for our winter stay.
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Tom and Louise Butler
2004 Monaco Windsor, Cummins 400 ISL
Roadmaster Sterling Tow Bar, Brakemaster, GMC Acadia, BikeE Recumbent Bicycles

After 9 1/2 years full time in our motor home and being Winter Texans we are now living at Sandpipers Resort in Edinburg, Texas. Now we are Summer Chickens!

"The tipi is much better to live in; always clean and warm in winter, cool in summer, easy to move... If the Great Spirit wanted men to live in one place he would have made the world stand still." -- Flying Hawk, South Dakota Oglala Sioux


#6 jmpearson

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Posted 28 October 2009 - 05:16 PM

Tune and I are true full timers and have been since February, 2002. The biggest thing we miss are assets! ;) Everything that we now possess is depreciating faster than the Titanic. :rolleyes: Of course we knew that this would be the case, but it's sort of like knowing your going to die some day, but when it happens, it hurts a whole lot worse than you thought.. However we have no immediate plans to park the rig. The only other thing that I miss is diesel under $!.50! :)
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#7 TBUTLER

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Posted 29 October 2009 - 08:48 PM

Ah yes, assets. For a long time, I kept saying that we had enough in investments so the kids could pay off the rig if something happened to us. Last fall took care of that position so now my fall back is that selling the rig and using the investments they should be able to get off Scott free! But the market did have a good day today (Nov. 29) so maybe we'll still be able to leave a little inheritance to the children.

I have some other great assets that I'm passing on to my children and heirs. I have some great experiences personally and have conveyed them to my children and grandchildren through my e-mails and blog. I have thousands of pictures that may fall into the hands of one of my great grandchildren who takes an interest in them and makes something of them. We're just beginning to take our grandchildren on motor home adventures and hope to leave them with great memories of their time with grandpa and grandma.

I have so many great memories that it is hard for me to recall even some of the very good ones. Living full time has enriched my life tremendously. My life is never the same, the scenery changes, the neighbors change, even our plans change. Jimmy Buffet said it best, "I'd rather die while I'm living than live while I'm dead."
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Tom and Louise Butler
2004 Monaco Windsor, Cummins 400 ISL
Roadmaster Sterling Tow Bar, Brakemaster, GMC Acadia, BikeE Recumbent Bicycles

After 9 1/2 years full time in our motor home and being Winter Texans we are now living at Sandpipers Resort in Edinburg, Texas. Now we are Summer Chickens!

"The tipi is much better to live in; always clean and warm in winter, cool in summer, easy to move... If the Great Spirit wanted men to live in one place he would have made the world stand still." -- Flying Hawk, South Dakota Oglala Sioux


#8 jontwork

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Posted 03 May 2012 - 09:00 PM

We are in our 12th year of full timing and we were not aware that there WERE any drawbacks to full timing.
I guess there is one drawback, we have not been able to sell our residential property in Michigan and that causes us some aggravation.
Mostly we don't worry about it. I noticed that some have posted that the excitement is going out of the adventure. It may be, that some of you stay in RV parks on a regular basis. We don't. We boondock, remote camp or whatever you want to call it, the majority of the time. We live on solar and wind power and utilize lots of public lands which are amazingly beautiful. Lots of wildlife around and interesting places to see and natives to meet. We'll keep doing it until we can't, either financially or reasons of health.
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#9 garyntut

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Posted 04 September 2013 - 08:11 PM

I know that this thread is old but I think I will leave a note anyway. We bought our 30ft no slides Thor Hurricane Apr 2003 and immediately drove it from Calif to Georgia and back over a three week vacation. When it came time to start for home, we didn't want to go "Home". We spent the next 10 years waiting to retire, get rid of the house, furniture and 40 tears of stuff. We even moved our youngest adult son and his family into the house for a winter and DW and I moved into the motorhome in the drive way.

When DW and I were first married ( 1970 ) we began out marital journey in a 30 ft trailer just outside the main post gate at Ft Benning where I was an Army MP. We still have fond memories of that round cornered, veneer plywood interior love nest. I many ways we have come full circle now after 43 yrs.

In April of this year we liquidated all assets and began our "end journey". We have no intention of going back to old sticks and bricks way of existence. I don't miss.... working 16 hr shifts, staining decks, busted water pipes, vacuuming 2800 sq ft of carpet and I really don't miss shoveling 3 ft of snow from the driveway (4,000 ft elev). Now when it snows I just fix hot chocolate!

We are somewhat new to full timing but after reading thousands of fulltime rv threads we are aware of all the yeas and nays. A person can choose to dwell on the negatives in their life or embrace what is good in life. So far the good out weighs the bad. We have traveled from Calif to Ohio this summer stopping here and there along the way and moving on, when we get the itch. We are in a great rv park www.cottonwoodspark.com/ Columbia Mo. waiting to attend the FMCA Six States Rally in Sedalia Mo.

I believe the number one requirement for Fulltiming in 300 sq ft of space is a great fondness for your motorhome partner. Love alone won't make it work. You really have to like your partner. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, so be sure to take a looong walk every day. Long walks together help also.
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If it ain't broke. I can still fix it....I am known to some as an RV Mutant

Like putting shoes on an octopuss...so are the days of our lives.

#10 Xplorer

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 04:55 PM

Too many places, and not enough time.
 
I dread having to have service repairs, maintenance, etc., that I can not do myself. Finding honest & quality service facilities is a challenge. Research, research, research.,,,,,or the dreadful breakdown. You  spends the $ and takes your chances. 
 
But the other 364 or 365 days are great!
 
Have fun.
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