I think too often people only share the good moments and parts of life. We like to create a reel of all the good moments and often share these via social media. But far too often from my experience this is far from the whole truth and dare I say not being socially honest. This had me thinking it’s about time I shared some of the bad and downright ugly parts of living full-time in an RV. These are just my opinions and others might not share my views and might have different experiences and that is ok. Here is where I shared some RV Take-aways.
Location can be a huge pain in the ass. Here in San Diego, for the most part, the rule is 30 days in 14 days out. So you have to move fairly often here. This means you have to do more long term bookings or be ready to try different parks whichever has an opening. This also means more work as every time you move you have to pack everything up. It can be annoying sometimes having to move so often. Especially if you are new to full-time RV living.
As a long time, renter maintenance on a home has been something I have not had to deal with. With living in an RV there is routine maintenance that must be done. It does not have much as most people think but still, more than renters deal with. So far I have had to replace a few pieces on our water heater, fix the screen door, maintain slide-out rails, remove rust on the frame and a few other minor things. Next, I am going to look over the roof and start to reseal it. One of the worse things is for an RV to get water in it.
It’s no secret that RV’s typically can be considered small compared to your average size house or even apartment. Some people’s RV is no bigger than a master bedroom. While our 32′ RV is not super small for the two of us and two Great Danes it still gets tricky. I had to get rid of a lot of my things and I was already a minimalist. You can’t store a lot of food ether as storage is limited in an RV. Besides that tight spaces can make any relationship hard. There is really no getting away from the other person unless you leave the RV. There is also the issue of being in each other’s way with such tight living conditions. On top of all that there is the dreaded hearing each other’s noises. If I am listening to a video my spouse can hear it and vice versa. This can make things challenging if one of us just wants a little quiet time.
That’s right living in an RV you will have to deal literally with shit. The plumbing leads to tanks that hold everything. So you have to hook up hoses to these and dump all that stuff so often. My first time doing it was a pretty ugly experience. As I got the dirty water all over my hands. Learn from me make sure the lines are closed before you attach the hose.
This depends a lot on your setup and RV. We got lucky and have a washer but no dryer. But most don’t have a washer in their RV. So you must walk to the laundry room at your park or drive to a laundry mat out in town. Either way, you now are having to shell out extra money per wash and dry. Not only that but the time you must invest going to these places sucks.
The weather can be a real buzz killer in an RV. To me, the point of RV living is more time outdoors. Yet if the weather is not playing nice than you are stuck inside. As I mentioned above little space and stuck indoors sometimes just sucks. Also when it gets cold outside you really feel it in the RV as most RVs are not really built that solid. So there is not a great amount of insulation in the walls. I have only used the heat a few times because I am cheap. But man does it suck getting up in the morning in the cold some days. When it rains you must make sure everything that can get damaged outside is put away.
These are my experiences over the last 6 months of full-timing. When I see people talk of RV living I really only saw the good points. I saw the fire outside at night with beer and wine. I saw people getting outdoors more. I saw the best moments of this lifestyle. Yet I never saw the real-life experiences that I have seen. While I do love this lifestyle so far it’s far from perfect or for everyone out there. I even talked about the crazy RV lifestyle here. I think the big takeaway is it has its pros and cons. For me, some of the big ones I mentioned above really put a drag on my experience with this lifestyle. I have not gotten out as much as I was imagining but a lot of that is due to weather and work. I did not expect it to be as cold as it was inside our RV when the temperature drops. Mind you we don’t turn on the heat because I am cheap. I was for sure not expecting to have issues in a small space. Yet it can be challenging navigating around the RV with just the two of us and two Great Danes.
So far I’m happy to have made this pivot in my life to try a new lifestyle. It has taught me a lot about myself that I would not have found out for a long time if ever. It has certainly made me realize I need more communication skills. I think this lifestyle amplifies a lot of things about you. It has been a fantastic financial choice. Every month has been cheaper than my luxury apartment. Hopefully seeing some of my cons will help you with your choice if this lifestyle is for you or not.
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Kat Rucker says
I love this post! I’m not interested in the RV life (because I still haven’t learned to drive…), but my dad has been talking about buying one for his retirement! He has always dreamed of seeing more of the US and I think this post will be really useful for him when it comes to planning.
I’m glad that overall you are happy with the lifestyle and shared both the + and – of RV life!