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Author Topic: Thinking about full-time - Yikes  (Read 7027 times)

Pattipl

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Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« on: October 05, 2006, 12:09:34 PM »
My husband came up with the full-time RV concept the other night.  He's very excited about it but I must say it's not something I would EVER have thought about.  We have traveled to Oregon, Washington, Idaho and British Columbia (I'm originally from Canada) looking for a place to retire.  We've lived in So. California most of our lives and are looking to get away from all the 'junk' related to this place.  We love the weather, our kids are here but there is just too much going on that we don't want to deal with when we retire (hopefully the end of next year).  We camped (tent and tent trailer) when the kids were little but that's the extent of our experience.

I don't know where to start....other than we will be attending an RV show at the Pomona Fairgrounds in a week or so.  I've even thought of visiting a campground near where we live to see if we can find some full-timers and get some input from them.  What do you all think of that?

I've always pictured we would find some property and build a house but now this has come up and I need to hear from those who had the same misgivings I'm having.

We've always talked about touring the US/Canada after we retire but I never guessed it might be as full-time RV'rs!! 

Any and all advice would be welcome.  Like I said we're in the talking stages.....he's doing most of the convincing and I'm just having anxiety attacks even thinking about it.  It does sound great one minute and the next......we'll you know, sell the house, put stuff in storage and take off.  Yikes!

Thanks for listening and I eagerly await your input.

By the way, we have a yellow lab........how will that work out?

Patti
Patti

Ron

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #1 on: October 05, 2006, 12:43:03 PM »
Hi Patti,

Welcome to the RV Forum.   Please look around the forum,  join in on any of the on going discussions, start new discussions, or ask questions. 

I would suggest you rent an RV a couple times to get a feel for what you feel is best for you.  Do a couple trips and ask questions.  Going to RV Shows is a great start.  Don't jump at the first RV that seems to fit look around first.  Ask questions here and we will try to provide good valid answers.

Thanks for joining us.
Ron & Sam-home is where we park it. Currently located   HERE

woodartist

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2006, 02:15:32 PM »
I'd suggest searching the forum, which has a lot of info about fulltiming. The best thing is to read about the "others" who have done it and those who are thinking about it. We have been fulltiming since 97 and don't look back. It is a totally different lifestyle, but perfect for some. As mentioned, post here with any questions and you'll get a lot of answers :)

Clay L

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #3 on: October 05, 2006, 04:01:46 PM »
I think it is a little disconcerting at first for most people. My wife and sort of accidentally started full timing. We intended to use our last motorhome to visit friends and family  all over the country for a few months and then find a warmer, cheaper place than NH to buy another house.

The NH house sold a month after we headed out and at first it felt really odd to not have a home base. Everything was in storage in NH but we didn't have a HOME.

After a year of wandering around the country we had not started looking for a place to live. Then we realised that we were having too much fun to settle down.
That was four years ago and we have no intentions of doing anything else for the foreseeable future.
Somewhere along the line age, health, or a change in attitude will mean that we will buy a house somewhere and we are prepared for that, but we both hope it's not soon.
Clay (WA5NMR), Lee (Wife), Katie & Kelli (cats), Sali (toy poodle)
Settled down after full timing for eleven years and snowbirding for one year in a 2004 Winnebago 35N Sightseer, Workhorse W 20 Chassis. Honda toad

fredethomas

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #4 on: October 05, 2006, 07:00:17 PM »
Patti:

Nothing wrong with your thinking at all.  I'd suggest either renting your house out for a year, or have someone look out for it in your absence.  Put your stuff in storage or not.  It may be expensive to hang on to it for a year, but I think you will know within 6 month to a year if you REALLY want to give it all up.  We did it in 3 months or less, but everyone is different, and not everyone can cope with being separated from belongings and kids/grandkids.  It's your choice.

However, having said all that, the freedom of no more house, and all that it entails, being in a different location any time you choose, being able to spend a few days or a few months in a particular place that you like, is like nothing else you will have ever experienced.  Since you are asking whether or not it's a crazy idea, only you can decide, but if it is, there are many, many of us right here on this forum with the same crazy idea.  We full-timed for 10 years, until minor health problems and age, made us build a house.  But, we had ten wonderful years to find out where we wanted to spend the rest of our days, and are totally happy with the decision.  We are happy to be in a place WE chose to be in and not forced upon us by circumstances.  We have been to all the the states except Hawaii, and they haven't yet built the bridge.  Our kids are scattered, but most of them 2,000 miles away.  We miss them, of course, but we visit them often either by phone, e-mails, or in person.  (They really do have to grow up on their own sometime in their lives.... <G> )

We especially love being on the road and meeting people from all walks of life, from retired plumbers to multi-millionairs.  It is a totally different mindset, and one that really sets you apart from family and friends once you try it.  You will have so many interesting experiences to tell about and remember for a very long time.  And this forum is a great place to start.  It is where we cut our baby teeth.  We never camped.  Bought a really old RV on a whim.  Drove it out west and had lots of trials and tribulations, but it only made us want more of it.  In less than two years we contracted to sell our 9 room 14 acre farm with a fabulous view, so that we could park our RV in places with even more spectacular views.  We met some wonderful people right here on the forum that have continued to be our friends, and continue to meet more each year as we meet at rallies around the countryside.   Just give it a try.  You won't know what you're missing until you do.        Daisy
FRED E. THOMAS

otrider

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #5 on: October 10, 2006, 12:20:13 AM »
Fred said it all.  Even If I didn't already want to do it, your reply to YIKES would have convinced me!
Pam

Clay L

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #6 on: October 10, 2006, 10:33:25 AM »
One other thing, regarding the lab you asked about.
We have two Shelties and one cat. The cat is a feral rescue at 6 weeks of age - now 3 years old and has known no other life, so is perfectly happy living in the RV and annoying the two dogs.

The two dogs had an acre of yard for the first part of their lives, but have adapted very well to the RV life.
They have learned that when we take them outside and tell them to go potty that they better do it now because the next stop might be a ways down the road.

They used to love walking around an RV park (leashed) meeting people and being told how pretty are they were, but age and aches and pains are catching up to them and they are not so fond of walking now.

In general animals do well living the full time life. Most problems involve leaving them alone. Some bark and annoy their neighbors - ours don't and we still check often to make sure they don't.
We have found that if all the shades are drawn, the AC or AC fan and the TV is left on to help mask outside sounds, the only time they bark is if some one comes to the door or stands right outside talking. They stop as soon as the people go away.

We always have sandwitch bags in our pockets to pick up poop. That is important.
Clay (WA5NMR), Lee (Wife), Katie & Kelli (cats), Sali (toy poodle)
Settled down after full timing for eleven years and snowbirding for one year in a 2004 Winnebago 35N Sightseer, Workhorse W 20 Chassis. Honda toad

Pattipl

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #7 on: October 10, 2006, 10:50:37 AM »
Thanks for all the information.  I think we're going to rent an rv next summer for a month and see if we can live in close proximity without killing each other  ;)  We'll take the Lab and see how she does.  She doesn't bark much.....only if there is a lizard on the wall or a squirrel on the wire in the yard! 
Patti

Pierat

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #8 on: October 10, 2006, 05:24:06 PM »
Clay - Thanks, too, for the information. We're considering RV life and one major question is our two Shelties, ages 12 and 10. Both walk a fair bit still, and would happily do their business if walked a couple times a day. But with age, well, I guess we can only plan so much of life....  We also have an older dachshund but he's happy absolutely anywhere. Most laid-back dog I can remember. - John
We Have Hung Up The Keys!
Washington State

Wendy

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #9 on: October 10, 2006, 07:00:25 PM »
By the way, we have a yellow lab........how will that work out?

Patti

We have a chocolate lab and before adopting him, we had a black lab. Labs are GREAT RVing dogs. They can fit themselves into small spaces, they love being with their 'families' but don't mind hanging out in the RV while the family is out and about, and they are usually quiet and well behaved. So long as you stop places occasionally to let them run off some of that energy, they do fine. Our chocolate 'dork' jumps in the motorhome the minute we start packing and won't budge for fear he'll be left behind. Even if you start out with weekend or weeklong trips, take that big yellow baby along and I think you'll all be happy.

Enjoy.
Wendy, Mike, and Gordon
~We can't be lost because we don't care where we're going~
Here's where we are http://map.datastormusers.com/user2.cfm?user=2276
2015 Allegro Ooen Road
1973 Sunshine Yellow VW Bug

Pattipl

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #10 on: October 10, 2006, 07:08:59 PM »
Wendy,  love your quote........I just need to get myself into that mindset!  It's scary to think of not having roots.  Our Lab, Maggie, will do fine as long as she's with us!  She's such a sweetie!! 
Patti

29er

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #11 on: October 10, 2006, 07:50:54 PM »
You have received encouragement from people who have or will have successfully made the transition from from "stick" homes to full time motor homeing.  Right now we are in negotiations with a couple that sold their home in Missouri and motored to Arizona, becoming Texas residents because of their low annual registration, along the way. One year later they are going to take a big hit from us or somebody else as they special ordered everything on the motor home and will never recoup the expenses. RENT FIRST and try to go for one or two long periods, and see if you like it. In another life I was an instructor for salvage scuba diving and many students bought a whole lot of expensive equipment and too late they found out it wasn't the glamour they dreamed it was. Rent first.
Kerry & Georgia BETH Mathews. Yes, honeymoon continues.

Pattipl

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #12 on: October 10, 2006, 07:59:04 PM »
Thanks 29er...........I want to rent first.  I want to go for two weeks in the summer and another 2 in the fall.  We will drive to our destination and then rent.  Good advice.
Patti

fredethomas

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #13 on: October 11, 2006, 01:59:32 PM »
Patti:

Another thing to consider when full-timing is what to do with all that time.  Ask what you want to do in your travels.  What do you want to see.  What will you do on off-days, when you really don't feel like leaving the rig, or the weather is inclement.  We find that trying to see and do all in a very short period of time is exhausting.   Usually after going 2-3 days steadily, we want a day to just lay back and let it all sink in.  For us, our adventures are sometimes too much to take in all at once. and we need a day to sit back and think about all we've seen or done.  We're no longer youngsters, so lots of physical activities are sometimes too much.  But we both enjoy reading, and usually have more aboard than we can finish up.  We'll take time to organize all the picutures we've taken, and everyday I write up a travelog for our large family of everything we did that day.  That usually takes a bit of time, as you can probably tell, my fingers get very verbose.  But I try to include everything. 

What I'm trying to say, and not doing it well, is that each of you will need to have some kind of a hobby, or something to retreat to when not traveling and sight-seeing.  You will have days that you really don't want to talk to each other, but that's part of it.  Too much togetherness can sometimes be a pain.  But.... the sun always comes up in the morning, and the rig will always move on the new adventures.  When we have one of those days, one of us usually manages to go for a long walk or to visit with the neighborhood, or just get absorbed into something else, so we won't have to interact for a period of time.  Meal times usually gets things right again.  Ah.... the healing points of food!!!!!  Anyway, don't let those days scare you, as they happen to all of us.  We had them in a nine-room house and 14 acres.  Space is not the culprit.  Just allow them to blow over and start anew later.

But some kind of a hobby will also give you something else to think about, something to absorb your own being into.  Just keep that in mind as you embark on this new adventure.   ----- Daisy
FRED E. THOMAS

Lorna

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #14 on: October 11, 2006, 02:11:27 PM »
Well said Daisy.
Lorna
Better to drive thy closet than pack thy suitcase
Want to know where we are?
http://whereis.nedreiter.com
Follow our trip of the USA at http://blog.usabyrv.us

Pattipl

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #15 on: October 11, 2006, 02:17:56 PM »
Daisy, I think that's one of my big worries.  My husband is always doing something around the house (just finished a complete kitchen remodel) and I'm afraid he'll get bored but he's the one 'pushing' this lifestyle change.  I am an avid reader.....guess there are libraries everywhere we will go.  I'm also thinking of taking up knitting.  Never was good with being 'crafty', tho.  We do have tons of family photos that we could drag along and finally put into albums!  One minute I want to say "let's just do it" and then the next I can think of 20 reasons why I don't want to be away from 'home'!  Guess an old 'farm boy' who moved from So. Dakota to Calif. the day after he graduated from high school is more of an adventurer than me.  My parents moved us from Canada to So. Calif. when I was 6 and we were in the same place until I graduated from high school.  City life is all I've known......

Oh, the decisions!  Wouldn't it be nice to go to sleep in my 'stick' house and wake up in some beautiful campground in, say, W. Virginia???  Then when I want to click my heals together my home will be wherever we stop. :D
Patti

Ned

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #16 on: October 11, 2006, 02:26:56 PM »
Your husband will find plenty to tinker with in an RV, especially when you're fulltiming.
-- Ned -- Fulltimer 1997-2013
1997 Holiday Rambler Endeavor LE
2007 GMC Canyon

Pattipl

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #17 on: October 11, 2006, 02:39:39 PM »
Ned, never thought of that.  Now you've given me another reason NOT to do this.......we'll end up with something  Tim the Tool Man Taylor would love!!!! ;)
Just kidding.  The other night he said he might take up quilting!  What???  Guess even after 33 yrs of marital bliss  ;D you can still be surprised by your spouse.  Hey, maybe I could knit (gotta learn first) and he could quilt and we could sell our 'wares' and pay for our new lifestyle.  Not a bad idea.

You all are great.  Thanks.
Patti

woodartist

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #18 on: October 11, 2006, 03:59:19 PM »
Well Patti, I'd just give it a try. Might not be for you but then you'll know:) We have been doing the FT thing for many years and our lifestyle just evolved. It is amazing what fulltimers do for hobbies and businesses...and they are happy to share. I've met people with remarkable skills and hobbies from painting, photography, rock painting, leather work, rock hounds, sewing, remote control plane people, knitting, writing, researchers, etc. Even met a fellow who knapped his own arrowheads from Obsidian. He spent some time showing me how to do it. My point is that there are "hobbies" out there for FTer's that you probably haven't thought about. When we went FT, we had hobbies/businesses  that we thought we would do...but they changed a lot :) There are many things to occupy time and in fact, there isn't enough time. The beauty is that you can go to where your interests are. I developed a passion for the old West and have traveled all over checking into those things with a lot of spin off interests. Nothing like having an interest in something and being able to go there and research :) .......all FYI

Wendy

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #19 on: October 11, 2006, 07:45:44 PM »
I always worried that Mike (the dh) would be bored with RVing (part or full-time) but I quickly discovered that he found ways to spend his time.....tinkering with the RV, chatting with other RVers (and RVers are an especially 'chatty' group), watching TV, surfing the internet, hiking, photography. Now if I could just get him to take an interest in washing dishes, doing the laundry, etc. But you will be surprised how quickly you both fill up the hours of the days.
Wendy, Mike, and Gordon
~We can't be lost because we don't care where we're going~
Here's where we are http://map.datastormusers.com/user2.cfm?user=2276
2015 Allegro Ooen Road
1973 Sunshine Yellow VW Bug

Shayne

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #20 on: October 11, 2006, 08:14:49 PM »
Wendy is almost dead on the money about the time issue.  I've been retired for 13 yrs now and I can't find time to do anything.  Always something to do.  It's caused me to develop one of my favorite saying.  "I'm going so fast I'm starting to back talk myself>"   In time you'll do the same thing.  Good Luck and as Larry the Cable guy says  "Get ur done"
Old, Stubborn, Opinionated, Set in my Ways, and Independent,  IMHO

Pierat

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #21 on: October 12, 2006, 02:30:34 PM »
I don't know how I ever had the time to work!
We Have Hung Up The Keys!
Washington State

Carl L

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #22 on: October 12, 2006, 05:24:01 PM »
I second Ron.  Rent for a week or two.  Yes, it will not be cheap, but you are making a big jump.  Since you are in So. California (like me), I would recommend El Monte Rents.  They are a good outfit that started out local and now is international.  Their LA outlet is in So. El Monte last time I looked.  They have a very complete website.

For a sampler trip I would recommend January and the desert.  Take two weeks.  First week do Anza Borrego Desert State Park in Borrego Springs.   I like the Palm Canyon RV Resort there.  Nice place -- swimming pool, spas, and restaurant.  Jeep tours are available.

Second week, take I-10 and  join the RVForum over in Quartzite, AZ for our annual rally there.  See the topic over in Ralleys, Shows and Events.  There you will meet the gang and more than a few full timers.   You can talk over the prospects with them.  You will be camping with no services (boondocking) so let El Monte know that in renting you a unit.  The camping fees are zilch, just the BLM fee which was $25 for 14 days the last time I was there.
Carl L/LA   [Forum Staff]  KI6SEZ

Prowler 23LV TT pulled by a '95 Ford Bronco

Pattipl

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #23 on: October 12, 2006, 06:15:00 PM »
Carl,  thanks for the info.  I'm trying to get my hubby to rent.  Says we will but since we'll only be gone a few weeks we really won't 'get' the full time feel.  I'm definately not jumping into this without first trying it out. 

Does El Monte RV rent 5th wheels?  That's what we really seem to like although I'm not ruling out a motorhome....husband doesn't like the low ceilings tho.

When in January is the rally in Az? 

Can ya tell I'm really scared?  This is a huge decision and I'm not a risk taker like my husband.

Patti

Wendy

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #24 on: October 12, 2006, 08:45:04 PM »
If you're nervous, by all means Rent. And Carl's tour sounds like a great one....can't beat the desert in winter. As for ceiling heights, Class A motorhomes have pretty high ceilings.....we often joke that, being vertically challenged, our motorhome could be a foot shorter and we wouldn't care.
Wendy, Mike, and Gordon
~We can't be lost because we don't care where we're going~
Here's where we are http://map.datastormusers.com/user2.cfm?user=2276
2015 Allegro Ooen Road
1973 Sunshine Yellow VW Bug

Carl L

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Re: Thinking about full-time - Yikes
« Reply #25 on: October 12, 2006, 09:22:00 PM »
Carl,  thanks for the info.  I'm trying to get my hubby to rent.  Says we will but since we'll only be gone a few weeks we really won't 'get' the full time feel.  I'm definately not jumping into this without first trying it out. 

Does El Monte RV rent 5th wheels?  That's what we really seem to like although I'm not ruling out a motorhome....husband doesn't like the low ceilings tho.

When in January is the rally in Az? 

Can ya tell I'm really scared?  This is a huge decision and I'm not a risk taker like my husband.



El Monte generally rents motorhomes, mostly Class Cs.   You are sampling the life style not the unit.  Anza Borrego's Palm Canyon will give you exposure to the delights of a good commercial  RV resort.  January is high season so make reservations when you reserve your RV.

Quartzite will give you exposure to lived in Class As and 5ers and folks who will take you around them.   Go see the topic.  Click HERE to get the entire story.  Do not hesitate to ask question there.
« Last Edit: October 12, 2006, 09:23:48 PM by Carl Lundquist »
Carl L/LA   [Forum Staff]  KI6SEZ

Prowler 23LV TT pulled by a '95 Ford Bronco

 

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