Living in an rv fulltime brings into play some expenses that most people don’t have to deal with. It’s interesting to analyze where your money is going and how much you are really spending on things.
Is our simplistic lifestyle worth it in our 400 sq foot home? How much does it cost to live in an rv? Come find out with me today and check out our REAL expenses for living in an rv.
Propane – $75 total
We’ve only filled up our tanks once this summer so far, although I suspect this amount will be going up since we will have to switch over to propane water heater and fridge with our limited electricity next week. This amount will also be much higher in the winter of course! We have 6 small propane tanks at the moment. (We want to invest in a large one for winter)
Lot Rent – $0 so far
In the beginning of the summer I was workcamping so we did not have to pay for lot rent. Now for a time I will be done with workcamping and this amount will go up of course once we move back onto a regular site at a campground. But so far we haven’t had to pay anything but our time. For the next short while we will also have the added costs of electricity as we’ve decided to move back out to our own land while the house is for sale. This amount will be limited though, as our electric will be limited since our land doesn’t have rv hookups. Should be an adventure!
RV Payment – $430 per month
Yes, we chose to have an rv payment over getting something cheaper. Why? This is our home and will be for a while yet, we will be stuffed in here all through the winter (summer is all about the outdoors though!) so we need to be comfortable. We are VERY happy with our rig and have no regrets about this decision. (Although I wasn’t so sure about it in the beginning.)
RV Maintenance – $36 total
We’ve had 2 things fixed on our rv so far, the electric water heater and the washing machine. Our entire rv is under warranty from the factory since we bought it new (last year’s model) so everything is paid for except the service call. I also purchased our washer brand new and it also has a warranty so that was fixed for free (the washer company paid for the service call on that one). I don’t really want to think about how much either of these fixes would have cost us if we didn’t have that warranty.
Insurance – $75
We chose a lower deductible for our insurance since we’ve been living in areas where our rv can be easily damaged by hail, wind, ect. I didn’t really want to have to come up with $1000 if our rv somehow got damaged we added up the costs over the next 2 years for the added cost of our deductible and it still didn’t add up to anywhere close to the $1000 (if we were to save that money out of pocket to pay for something instead.
Internet – $70 per month
Even thought the rv park we were staying at had internet, it was very poor and very slow, and very unreliable. Since 99% of my work is online I couldn’t take that risk so we purchased Millenicom. Millenicom is like Verizon’s discount plan. For $70 a month we get 20 GB of internet with no contracts and it runs off the Verizon 4G network. We can cancel and restart it at anytime if needed. I’ve been very impressed with the service so far.
Total = $575 per month + $111 other expenses for the summer
Of course these are only the expenses we have that are associated with living in the camper. We still have our monthly food budget expenses, car expenses, ect. And we still have not sold our home yet so we have those expenses as well, however all that will go away (plus any debt we have and one of our car payments) when the house is sold. (We flipped a foreclosure and are hoping it will pay off!) So soon our expenses will just be these for the rv and not much else.
However, considering that this total amount per month is just half of our house payment I feel pretty good about this number! We will have more expenses in the winter (including lot rent, possibly electricity depending on where we are at, and propane of course). I will do another analysis in the winter so you can see what it’s like then.
We do plan to have some upcoming expenses on the rv including the addition of some solar and “off grid” features that we will be needing over the next few weeks with our limited electricity. I’ll chat about what we end up getting after we purchase some things and see what really works!
When other rv bloggers do an expenses analysis it usually includes many more expenses (travelling, parks, fees, ect) however we are stationary rv’ers and are simply living in our rig while daily life goes on and we work to go debt free. This saves us a lot of expenses! Of course we don’t get to travel all the time but with our low costs we’ve already been on 3 excursions with our rv and hope to do more when our house has been sold.
Are these amounts what you expected? Or did you think it would be higher or lower? What is your biggest expense concern about living in an rv?