What We Learned From a Year of Fulltime RV Living

by Merissa on February 14, 2014

in Fulltime RV Living, Simple Living

What We Learned From Fulltime RV Living for a Year - Little House Living

What We Learned From a Year of Fulltime RV Living

Β If some one had told me a year ago what our lives would look like today, I wouldn't have believed them. In January of 2013 we finalized our decision to move into a rv fulltime and sell our house. We moved in permanently in February of 2013. This wasn't a quick decision, we had thought about it for a long time. We prepped for many months, purged our belongings several times, planned for being in a small space with a little one, and figured out where we were going to go.

After a few months of living in our rv we decided that we were ready to hit the road and travel fulltime. It was an amazing dream that we had and we were so excited to see it happen. This took more planning, figuring out where we would be going, buying memberships, preparing our currently stationary rv and we finally planned on hitting the road in mid-October. (We'd finally gotten an offer on our house at the end of July)

Then October came around and so many things happened at once. The house-selling didn't go as planned, the government shut down, the big blizzard hit, and all our beautiful plans went down the drain and our hope was dashed. It was almost winter, we were unable to travel, had no home to go back to and no where to go.

But somehow in just a week's time we managed to pull off a miracle. In just a few days we had found a home to buy, had an accepted offer, had a job offer for the hubby, and started making plans to move 300 miles from what I've always known as home. Now here we are...almost done with our time in the rv and getting ready to move into our renovated farmhouse that we've been working on for the last 4 months. Crazy.

So what did we learn from our year in the rv? Would we do it again? What would we change? Here's my summary of all this and more from our time living in an rv...

What did you learn from the last year of fulltime rv living?

We learned that you need SO much less than what you think you need to get by. And when you think you've gotten rid of everything you don't need you can always find more that you can get rid of. We've learned that together as a family, we can get through anything. We've also learned that personal space is important. There isn't enough room in the rv for each of us to have our own corner, I would have loved that some days! We've also learned that it's important (but very possible) to be prepared for weather no matter where you live. In the rv we lived through flash flooding, scary winds, and blizzards and came out on top.

Would you do it again?

My answer might surprise you....in short, no, but maybe. If our son was older and not a very energetic toddler, it would have been easier. Or if he was a baby that didn't make huge messes all over the floor, couches, beds, ect, I think it would have been easier. If we'd been in an area with a more temperate climate we would have been able to be outside more. Let me tell you, being stuck inside on these cold days with a crabby, teething, way-too-energetic toddler has been trying on my nerves. I'm very ready to have more space for him to run. However if you ask me in a few months after not living in here, I might say yes, I'd do it again. πŸ™‚

What would you change?

We would have traveled right away instead of thinking we would be happy being stationary. Life is too short to be boring and not take chances once in a while. I wish we would have taken the chance when we had it and at least gotten to travel for a few months before we had to settle down. We would not have changed our rig or truck, we were very happy with both and the options and features we had.

Do you regret living in the rv for a year or the choices you made?

No, we have no regrets. Life over the last year has been hard, that much is true, but it's the hard times that prepare us for the future and move us to where we are supposed to be. Without the things we went through we wouldn't be here today and we believe this is where we are supposed to be.

What was your favorite thing about living in an rv?

Becoming a minimalist. We really didn't have much before...or so I thought, but getting rid of almost everything that we didn't need was one of the biggest unexpected blessings. I no longer feel like we have the burden of "stuff" and it's allowed us to focus on so many other things that are important in life.

What are you looking forward to the most in the house?

A real bathroom with a real bath tub. Normal sized beds. A real stove that I can pressure can on. A septic system we don't have to drain manually.

So many things we've learned over the last year. It's been quite the crazy roller coaster ride! Feel free to ask my any other questions you might have about our experience in the comments section.

Read our full series on Fulltime RV Living and catch up on our last year!

merissabio

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{ 71 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Missy February 14, 2014 at 6:39 am

I’m with you on the minimalism! We live in a small house and it’s such a blessing because it forces us to live with less and make do with what we have. Owning less and living without junk is so freeing!!

I have to admit part of me is jealous of your year of RV living, but I know it had to have been challenging! I have an energetic two year old and it’s hard to stay couped up in the house during the cold months!

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2 Merissa February 14, 2014 at 6:53 am

Yes it is! I’m glad that our new house is still little (although not as little as the camper), and that we don’t have any closets. We are going to have to get really creative with what we have left!

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3 Don Lowery December 10, 2014 at 9:40 am

After reading that you are going to Alaska on a long trip and going to can your fish that you catch, we began a big discussion here. I have a big rig with a diesel truck and 32 ft. fifth wheel trailer and my wife always wanted to see Alaska. Please let us know anything about your trip via email? Anyway, there was a big discussion about canning fish there in Alaska on the trip. I loved the idea, but my wife said…”Oh No”…I think it would be great to can the fish. Can you give me any details of that too when you do it? Good Luck and Happy Camping! Don

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4 Karen Jerread February 14, 2014 at 6:58 am

I am so happy for you now that you are getting into your house. Great work! You are hubs are great parents and teaching your children the really important things in life. Many blessings to you.

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5 Pamela February 14, 2014 at 8:54 am

You and your husband are actually blessed to find out early in your marriage that you really don’t need that much. Many people keep lining their home with more things. That is not what makes a house a (Home).
I have been there, but in a different way. We had a small home in a flood plain area for nine years. I often thought, why get anything new when the house might be in water of a least a few feet at any time. Our second home, is considered a beginner home. We are still living in it. Often people think they need more space, when all they really need is to take time to make decisions on what to get rid of. Trying to travel light.

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6 Michelle February 14, 2014 at 9:07 am

We lived in a camper for about 2 years with our 4 young children (8 months, 2, 4, & 7). I have no regrets. Like you realizing you don’t need all the “stuff” is so freeing. However, we found that we could have our own space. Everyone was given a small storage box that they could keep all their “treasures”. These boxes sat on the child’s bed. When the children wanted time alone they went and sat on their bed. We lived in NC and had all kinds of weather. Surprisingly to me we were never too hot, nor too cold. It was like living in a house. And even though we could have gone out more, we still spent a lot of time indoors. Also we homeschool, so we spent lots of time together. I agree, we definitely became a close knit family… once all the mass of toys left. I remember a Focus on the Family program years ago talking about their children only having a few toys for each child. We decided to implement that concept for two reasons. One, constant fighting over toys. And two, toys seemed to be everywhere. I gave each child the choice of one toy. The rest were either given away or stored in order to switch out later. I thought the children would complain, but they didn’t… not once! We all learned from that lesson. But mostly, the children started appreciating what they had. And there was absolutely no more bickering! Would I do it again? Absolutely! Oh yeah, having such a small space brought out the creativity in me too!

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7 K February 14, 2014 at 9:22 am

I love the idea of utilizing every item you have for double and even triple duty—for example, using a beautiful old trunk to store extra linens and also as the coffee table. Or, using ugly boxes/bins to store “whatever” and then place a table cloth over it and use as nightstands.

This is how our ancestors lived and there is a simplicity to it that I find beautiful and charming. I suspect you possess this same sensibility and your new home will be both warm/inviting and charming.

Best of luck to your family. With a new home and greater outdoor space, your energetic little one will be able burn off some of that energy, which is definitely good for mom.

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8 Jean February 14, 2014 at 9:32 am

We lived in our Rv for a year and we look back at those days with fond memories. It’s funny, you hit the nail on the head about “stuff”. We are back in an apartment right now and I get “wiggy” every now and then that we have too much stuff.

I long for those simple days.

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9 Lisa February 14, 2014 at 10:01 am

If you cannot pressure can on the RV stove, how are you canning? I am only asking because we are planning a long RV trip to Alaska and I wanted to can the fish we catch up there.

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10 Merissa February 14, 2014 at 1:47 pm

I’m not canning right now. I did a few things last fall on my mom’s stove. I’ve heard of buying a burner to put outside to can on but I haven’t tried it. The rv stoves though won’t get hot enough.

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11 CJ March 24, 2014 at 12:09 pm

My husband and I lived in an RV for almost six years. Although we now have a small farm, I don’t regret living in the RV a bit. As to your canning, you will be well served buying a CampChef or the equivalent. I did a lot of canning when we lived in the RV and it was all done outside. I admit, I never pressure canned until we got the farm, but the CampChef definitely gets hot enough.

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12 Ben August 6, 2014 at 11:00 am

Take a look at brewer supply websites (google “homebrew supply”). Most have outdoor propane burners for less than $100, for boiling the wort, which is typically 5 gallons of water. I use mine for canning also.

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13 Geri January 27, 2016 at 8:16 pm

You should consider canning outdoor. Canning salmon or any fish is a pretty sticky job that will smell up your rv. I use the burner from my turkey fryer. It works great. The propane is plumbed into our Rv tank. Got to tell you, that is real handy. Just keep wind blocked, and the 10# of pressure for 90 mins is not a concern.

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14 Brooke February 14, 2014 at 1:42 pm

Wow, that’s a lot of learning! Glad you were able to make it work, though, and come out stronger and more knowledgeable. I’m sure it will make living in your new house much more rewarding than it otherwise may have been πŸ™‚

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15 Joanne February 14, 2014 at 5:45 pm

Merissa, loved reading about your adventures over the past year. Thanks so much. I wonder if you and Melissa might answer a question for me. Were you ever cold sleeping in the camper, (meaning, was the insulation sufficient to living in an RV in the winter? I’m thinking of this myself, I know I can do it, I just don’t have alot of knowledge (yet!)
Thanks and God Bless!

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16 Merissa February 14, 2014 at 5:56 pm

We were not cold, but our bedroom was above the furnace. It was a little chilly back in the bunkhouse so we put a small electric heater back there which worked just fine. We do spend quite a bit on propane though…even though our camper is 4 seasons they still aren’t insulated like a house.

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17 Linda Goudelock February 14, 2014 at 6:31 pm

When my daughter was little we lived in an mobile home in the middle of the woods, but it was southern Florida and we had the outdoors. We now live in a 5th Wheel trailer and travel most of the time. It was something we planned for and after 8 years we still enjoy.

It’s true, you have no idea of what you need or can do without until you live small. we moved out of a 4 bedroom house into our rig and still I’m finding things I don’t need…a rule we full time RV’ers have…if you bring something into the house, something must leave. I think sticks and bricks people should adhere to this rule too It’s only stuff!

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18 Merissa February 14, 2014 at 7:32 pm

Lol, sticks and bricks…I do love the rv’ers lingo! I know I say things like this that others just don’t get πŸ™‚ We also followed the “something in something out” rule as well…it works great!

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19 Angel B February 15, 2014 at 2:38 pm

I find it amazing how much stuff people acquire. I have never liked having a lot of stuff. At one point about 6 years ago I found in was trying to keep up with the Jones’. Well in my case the Meyers. After a while I couldn’t do it anymore. The stuff its worth it. It wasn’t bringing me happiness. My friend came to my house and said she could fill up.all my walls. I don’t want that. We definitely live in a bigger home than needed but for the price we couldn’t pass it up. Im happy with my bare looking walls.
Thanks for your blog. I really enjoy it. My husband bought me my first pressure cooker and I’m super excited about canning this year. I need a class first. Lol

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20 Merissa February 15, 2014 at 5:05 pm

I hope you enjoy your pressure canner! I’ll be posting how-to videos on our You Tube channel this summer πŸ™‚

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21 tealady3 February 15, 2014 at 7:54 pm

We are now living in a mobile home after we sold our 2 story,4 bedroom home I had to pare down a lot which did not hurt at all.My hubby will retire in less than 3 years and I would love to buy an R.V. and live in it and travel and spend time visiting friends and family.My sister lives on 24 acres and she has told me many times to come and pick an acre.I am working on my hubby a little every day.We both have our own hobbies and interests but we also have a lot of things we enjoy to do together.I am currently trying to pare down even more.Good luck in your new home.

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22 Crystal February 16, 2014 at 8:09 am

I’m new to you blog and have really enjoyed it! We just recently had the same experience. We moved to a new place, lived in an rv for a year wth our two kids while my husband built our house with his own two hands. Definitely no regrets! We purged a lot of our belongings before we moved but because of living in an rv we learned to live with much less. So we purged a lot more as we unpacked in our new home. It’s nice to hear others that have had similar experiences with similar views on living life. Thank you for the time you spend writing and sharing πŸ™‚

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23 Brenda O'Neill February 16, 2014 at 12:23 pm

I have followed every moment of your journey since my daughter emailed me your link, i look forward to your thoughts and ideas. One thing that I could do with is the minimalist idea, where do you start? I sometimes look around my home with dismay and think what could I do without, what do I do with all the things I have paid for, how do I get my money’s worth from them…. Can I really use them and will I manage to use all that wool/ material/ craft stuff I bought… Any ideas?

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24 Merissa February 16, 2014 at 12:26 pm

Start in one room at a time and take your time. Go from room to room and do a whole house sweep then sell and donate the items. A few months later, do it again, and repeat as often as needed. It took us a good year to get where we are today and I still am finding things that we don’t need. One of the rules I went with when I got further into cleaning out was if I couldn’t buy it again (memory items) and if I wasn’t using it every week, I didn’t need it. Once you get into it and after the first couple rounds of cleaning out you won’t be able to stop!

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25 Elise February 16, 2014 at 4:25 pm

I’ve been going through your archives on rv living because DH and I are thinking about moving and very possibly living in one. So fascinating! And kind of scary. My husband isn’t find of minimalism lol.

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26 Merissa February 16, 2014 at 4:35 pm

I think it takes time to get there. It took us a year to clean out and it was hard in the beginning but we are totally different people now because of it and neither me or hubby could ever go back to the way we were. One step at a time πŸ™‚

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27 Cynthia L February 16, 2014 at 7:41 pm

I am not sure I could get rid of all of my stuff. Well, maybe some of it, but I would have a hard time with it. I love hearing about your time in an RV. I agree the travel would have been great, but doing it with a little one would be hard.

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28 Hipockets February 16, 2014 at 7:53 pm

From the photo of your R.V. I noticed you did’nt have anything under
it to insulate frim the cold winter weather’ People I know that live in
an R.V. in the winter, at least put bales of straw all around the bottom
as skirting,helps to insulate and keep the cold out’ I live in a small house
and every wall and corner has something sitting there. That’s the result
from moving 2 homes to one,and with most everything family heirlooms
that I waited my whole life to have and enjoy,it’s all stuff I can’t part
with. At least once a year I go thru every room and try to weed stuff out,then garage sale it. Hope your new home is warm and comfy’

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29 Merissa February 16, 2014 at 7:54 pm

The picture above was from when we spent 2 weeks in an rv park so we couldn’t use straw bales or skirting during that time, for the rest of the winter we’ve been up next to a building which has helped!

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30 miki February 16, 2014 at 8:20 pm

We traveled and worked for 9 years out West while living in a travel trailer. I pressure canned and BWB’d on my rv stove and my weighted gauge Presto worked just fine. We stayed in an rv park for a year after we stopped traveling and that was harder than the previous 9 years. I agree on not doing it again. Glad we did it while we were healthy. DH has issues now that would make it impossible. We are in a 16×60 mobile home and still pretty minimalist–except for the office full of canned foods from the garden. The traveling was great and we saw so many things and met so many people! Good luck on your new life!!!

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31 Cyndi February 18, 2014 at 5:42 pm

I love how you made the best of your life with what you had. It has been a goal of mine to live a more simple life. I love your site and all your ideas. They really are an inspiration to me as well as a motivater to keep me working tp my goal of simplicity.
Thanks for sharing your adventures!

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32 Stacy February 19, 2014 at 2:22 pm

I just found your website while doing a search for what people are doing for eczema. The Dr.’s believe my 4-year old daughter may have it. Can’t wait to try your lotion recipe.
I have truly enjoyed reading your blog. The one you wrote about having a broken heart…don’t let others get you down. You are so uplifting for many of us. There will always be that ‘one’ who isn’t happy with themselves…so they have to pick on someone else. You are doing an awesome job and again, I’m loving your blog.

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33 Brandi Kilbourn February 23, 2014 at 10:33 pm

My family began living in an RV in January of 2013 as well. There are five of us. We travel the country with my husbands job (pipeline). My favorite “lesson” has also been minimalism… We had so much “stuff” before! I love living in our fifth wheel… It truly is a house on wheels. I am a full time online student with plans to go to grad school… I will miss living on the road but hope the lessons I’ve learned along the way and the experiences my children have had will serve us well.

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34 Latrecia February 24, 2014 at 4:59 pm

We too are a fulltime RV family of five. I love that you are so honest here. Living fulltime in a RV isn’t for everyone. I’m glad to hear that you all have had the opportunity to experience both sides and figure out what is best for your family.

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35 Amber A February 26, 2014 at 9:25 pm

Ah! I read this aloud to my husband as I came across it. We are doing a ton of research right now on fifth wheels. Looking to purchase one later this year. Move in beginning of next when our lease is up. We have an Almost 6mo. old. We would be stationary for a year.<–only way to make it make sense financially. We will start our journey traveling around staying at places on our list of where we want to put down roots. Maybe even adding a few along the way. I get So nervous about the stationary part… Cold feet. We're looking at a 2014 Bighorn w/ the FL. So not too shabby… But a huge change from what we're use to. And our little one will be at that toddler age. Eek! Any advice?! Different groups you would recommend?

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36 Sarah @ Little Bus on the Prairie February 27, 2014 at 1:03 pm

We are about to move our family of 5 into a double-decker school bus while we build a house, so this was a good read for me! I’m glad we’re in SoCal so we won’t have to worry about blizzards!

I would love to hear more about what things you would have changed or done differently as this will be our first foray into rv living and I DO have an energetic 1 year old!

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37 Merissa February 27, 2014 at 1:39 pm
38 sarah @ little bus on the prairie February 27, 2014 at 2:11 pm

Thanks Merissa, I did read through your series and was sad that it ended so abruptly, but glad that ecerything worked out for you guys! I think I will email you with some questions, although our sitation is a bit different than yours as our bus doesn’t have some of the amenities your (very nice) rv had πŸ™‚

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39 Christina March 15, 2014 at 7:15 pm

My mom, stepdad, brother and I lived in a 20 foot Airstream for a year. I have such fond memories of that time. My brother was 5 and I was 4 (I think). We lived in Lordsburg, NM which was always mild even in the winter but dreadfully hot in the summer. We spent most of the year outdoors making forts, catching lizards and playing pretend outside. I would like to do that someday even if only for a season.

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40 susan cavalier March 16, 2014 at 9:56 am

We live up in a ski resort and fishing town in the Southern California mountains. We are selling our beautiful home to go full time RVing this summer 2014. I listen to Dr. Dopson too and am inspired by your message you wrote.

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41 Jenifer March 25, 2014 at 10:54 am

We are preparing to move from our 1800 square foot rental house into a 25 foot 5th wheel as a family of 4 with the children being 4 and 5 years old. I am purchasing 10 acres and we plan to build a small house ourselves. I currently have every inch of our house full of something as well as a 12X20 foot storage barn full of STUFF. Each day I’m off work I’m going through each room & put my hands on each item in the room and asking three questions 1) is it useful, 2) is it beautiful, 3) will I miss it. The item then goes into one of three categories 1)garage sale, 2) donate, 3) store. I’m hoping to have more donate & garage sale items that storage items.

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42 Lovey April 15, 2014 at 8:58 am

We are older and went fulltime rv when we were 55 and 56. Did it for 7 years. Saw a lot of country and met great people. I love that we got rid of so much. We now live in a single wide mobile home. Find we only use part of it. Nice to have extra bedroom for guests though. I miss stopping at the great campgrounds and making friends that make you feel bad that you spent the whole first part of your life NOT knowing them.

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43 rodger May 1, 2014 at 2:10 pm

We have recently moved into our rv..we moved from a 3800 Sq foot house.my wife and I have A 3yr old and one on the way.our biggest
concern is baby and toddler proofing everything. .any suggestions as i noticed you had a toddler as well..
Thanks
rodger rose

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44 cyndi May 24, 2014 at 10:42 am

Hi Marissa,
I am prepping to go full time RV living as we speak. I’ve bee. Through a living nightmare the last 4 1/2 years and lets put this simply..I’m DONE! One of tbe multitude of things happening is I’m losing my home of 21 years. Im disabled now, emotionally and physically.
So, I’ve decided to take what money I have and wbat I can get from selling everything in my 5 bed/2 bath home and buy either a motor home or a 5th wheel and release this stress. I have tremendous plans to paint, create customized solutions and live by myself, for myself. My kids think I’ve lost my mind…I think if I don’t do this I WILL lose mg mind and someone will have to talk me off the ledge!
In my preparing anx researching, I found you. Your blog, ideas, recipients and everything you’ve shared about your experience has been very helpful and enlightening. Thank you for sharing it. I may also start a blog…..I’d love your permission to mention you by name and refer people to your website.

Love & Light
Cyndi

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45 Merissa May 24, 2014 at 12:34 pm

Of course, feel free to pass the website along to anyone! I’m glad I can help you on your journey.

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46 Susanne August 17, 2015 at 8:43 pm

Hi Cindy! I am curious if you were able to live your dream as an RVer. I, too, am thinking of doing something like this and was interested in where you were with that.
Best wishes,
Susanne

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47 Leighann July 10, 2014 at 4:13 pm

I was so excited to come accross your blog. My husband and I have had a lot of ups and downs the past few years. Both of us had suffered job losses, mine when I was 6 months pregnant and my husband a year and a half later. After leaving our last home to find a much cheaper rental and living their for a few years our landlord decided to up and sell when the market went up leaving us high and dry. Hated wasting our money on rent again, which was considerably higher everywhere we looked, so we are now buying a bunkhouse fifth wheel to live in until we can save up a larger down payment for a home of our choice. My family and friends thought we were crazy when we told them we were going to sell everything and start fresh. Thank you for wonderful insite on Little House Living. I’m truly excited and can’t wait to feel free from the cluter and put our money back in our own pockets instead of someone elses.

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48 Merissa July 10, 2014 at 8:33 pm

I’m glad you made your way here too Leighann, you are in company here that understands your journey! Good luck on what’s to come in your future. I hope you find some useful info πŸ™‚

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49 BronGil July 16, 2014 at 10:50 pm

Found you on Pinterest. Our story is that we wanted property & a one-story home but, in the excitement of searching for our first home, we ended up in a two-story culdisac lot home in a cookie-cutter neighborhood. For 7 years we complained (about the neighbors, about the stairs, about the stuff, about not bring able to go out back and shoot our guns…. This year I challenged us to “put up or shut up”…..SO, we now own an RV parked outside my mother’s house (laundry & black water help!!) and will buy in a year or so. The minimalist mentality had been my fav part as well! Closing on our house sale on Monday – setting off on our adventure (children are 12, 10, 6 & 4). Prayers welcome!

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50 Merissa July 17, 2014 at 8:20 am

Good luck on your new adventure!

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51 Robert Grabowski July 25, 2014 at 5:51 pm

Thanks for sharing your experiences. I have been living in a fifth wheel since 2009 and the experience is exactly right for me, but everyone’s circumstances are different. When people ask me if I recommend fulltime RV living my answer always starts with “It depends…”

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52 Kendall September 20, 2014 at 8:21 am

What were your costs like with RV living? Propane, maintance and gas? How did your grocery bill compare to when you were in a home?

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53 Merissa September 20, 2014 at 10:28 am

Hi Kendall, you will want to check out my full series on Fulltime RV Living, you can find it here: http://www.littlehouseliving.com/fulltime-rv-living

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54 Merissa October 1, 2014 at 6:46 pm

My husband, myself and our very active almost 4 year old daughter are living in our rv as well. We love it (minus the area we are in). We have adapted the minimalist lifestyle, and while others might not understand it, it truly is an amazing experience. We will be moving into our home (in another city) in may of 2015. I feel this experience has been very humbling. It was nice coming across your blog and reading about your experiences.

PS- my names MERISSA too!

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55 Merissa October 1, 2014 at 7:15 pm

Ahh there is another Merissa out there! πŸ™‚ Welcome!

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56 Stephanie October 16, 2014 at 1:23 am

Hello. I’ve enjoyed reading all about your adventurous life in an RV for a year. I came across it while googling life in an RV. I’m somewhat at a crossroad right now. My husband and I have just had our third child, live in a really cute home, but have outgrown it. I have so many dreams for our family to homeschool, travel, visit family since my husband gets eight days off every six weeks, however, these dreams seem to be out of reach bc of debt and the stage of life we’re in. Long story short, I’ve had many lightbulb moments after our third child was born that I’m spending too much time cleaning and putting away stuff and not enough quality time with my littles whom are growing up way too quickly. I’m ready mentally to go as minimalist as I can with a large family, but do have some reservations I hope you can help me clear up. Since my husband works three nights within the six week work rotation, did you feel safe in your RV at night? Would you have ever stayed there alone with your little one? Where did you go for bad weather? Amd how did you know it was really bad enough to actually go to a storm shelter (if you had something like that available)? Would you say your rent, electric, water, etc plus RV note/gas, and if you had chosen to get a storage locker (vs the purchase of trailer) helped you come out ahead? Or did all that equal what you would pay in a mortgage note and house expenses? I know we would love to own an RV one day so paying that off while living in it would be a perk, but wondering if I would feel safe at night while my husband was at work? Thanks so much! Hope I’m not picking your brain too much with my questions. πŸ™‚ Love the farm house and land and wish you and your family many blessings.

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57 Merissa October 16, 2014 at 7:51 am

I felt safe in the RV but you will want to make sure that you are staying in a safe campground/area. The campground we lived at the longest had security guards. In many areas that get bad weather frequently, some campgrounds have a storm shelter. Our bills in the camper were less than half the price of our mortgage except in the winter when propane prices were so high last year, although it would have been expensive to heat a house as well so we probably still saved money. I hope that helps answer your questions!

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58 rose December 28, 2014 at 4:33 am

So my husband and I are going to be doing this, but I’m curious about health care. Its a silly thing but I don’t want to be Sol when our daughter gets sick, what did you guys do?

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59 Merissa December 28, 2014 at 7:49 pm

We are part of Samaritin’s Ministries, I posted more about it here.

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60 Lee February 21, 2015 at 10:21 pm

What make and model was your 5th wheel RV? Did you find it well made and would you recommend that brand? I’m finding it hard to choose a good 4-season, well-made trailer for fulltiming in. Thanks!

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61 Merissa February 22, 2015 at 8:15 am

We had an Open Range 413 RLL. We loved the model and the features it offered, it was very homey too!

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62 Kat August 26, 2015 at 9:48 am

hi Lee,
We have a 2011 Grand Junction, 39′, four season. Pull it with a Dodge 3500 diesel. Grand Junction is/was made by Dutchman. They no longer make GJ however have replaced them with another name, one which I do not remember.

My husband who is very handy has added some extra insulation to our rig because we often live in areas with good winters. One winter we were in -26 degrees and were very toasty inside. Also, the storage/basement of our rig is heated in the winter. One of the reasons we bought it. Also, we’ve added a complete solar system to ours and we live off the grid (even in an RV park) often. In the Winters, depending on where you live, you can use solar as well….just have to watch how much. On average, our electric year around is less than $50.00 a month. That includes running 2 A/C in the summer if needed.

I will say that no rig one buys is likely to be as perfect as one wants….ours isn’t. However, we’ve done some small changes to make it better for us and that is what I would recommend. When you walk in our rig it feels and looks like a small home….it is.

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63 hailee April 6, 2015 at 10:21 pm

Hi I was just wondering what the main necessities are when living in a camper. We are building a house and will be living in our camper for 4 months.

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64 Merissa April 8, 2015 at 7:19 am

Pretty much just any of your day to day basics you use at home, dishes, a small amount of clothing, bathroom things and first aid kit, etc. We didn’t really use anything too special besides some extra totes for organization.

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65 Kat August 26, 2015 at 9:38 am

We’ve lived in an RV full time now for more than 10 years. This 5th wheel is our second one. The thing I would like to have, only sometimes, is a bathtub. However, it is really a low priority. Having to downsize was never a problem for us with one exception. We love our Native American art collection and that was hard to do away with. So, we put it along with some family antiques in storage for the time we may decide to have a house. Somehow, I doubt we’ll do that though.

We don’t have small children so never had that experience in our RV. As for personal space….well, we never seem to have a problem. We have enough projects to do that those have become our personal space, I guess.

We’ve done much traveling over the past years. My husband was a traveling nurse and we have seen much of the U.S. We’ve traveled to Canada and Mexico with our RVs.

We’ve talked many times about going back to a house with land. We have never done it. Perhaps we shall get some land where we can live in our RV because neither one of us want to move out of it. It is our home and we love it. We think large space and “stuff” is highly overrated.

Kat

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66 Carrie October 25, 2015 at 1:12 am

haha, I found you looking for a braided rug tutorial, but then got sucked down the rabbit hole. We’ve lived in a 400 sq ft house for 5 years. We have a 3 y.o. and a 1 y.o. I love my little house, and am quite content here. The longer we live in it, the better it gets because we keep finding ways to make it more efficient.

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67 TJ February 2, 2016 at 12:41 pm

I’m curious, what did you do for internet and cell phones. I hear you can buy a WI FI box or something like it and pay a monthly fee. What have you or other people done for this.
Thanks for your help

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68 Merissa February 3, 2016 at 5:44 pm

We used a service called Millenicom (which I’m not sure is still functioning), we’ve also used Straight Talk Wireless for internet and that worked well also. We use Straight Talk for our cell phones.

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69 Misty September 30, 2016 at 12:08 am

Thank you for sharing your experience. We are looking at living in a trailer so I can stay home with our boys ages 3 & 5 weeks. I’m so tired of the office politics & missing out on my boys childhood,

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70 Bridget October 4, 2016 at 1:54 pm

Interesting about the pressure canning. I’ve been living in an RV 2 years in Alberta now and I pressure can like crazy on my propane stove! We won’t be going back to non-mobile living for years and years yet if ever.

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71 Joyce March 10, 2017 at 10:49 am

Me and my husband have a 5 th wheele and we want to sell everything and live in it but I’m afair I’ll miss my house and kids

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