florida questions

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Well-known member
Sep 29, 2012
Holland, Michigan
We have officially become snowbirds, now comes the questions with which I need help....

We arrived in Florida in late October, and won't be leaving until May.  We are planning on repeating the experience next year. 

Therefore, we are considering storing the motorhome in Florida rather than driving it north in May.  Storage would be in a three sided building (with roof).  This would be a new experience for us and I am concerned about possible mold / mildew issues.  Two of the facilities have suggested setting the AC  at about 80 and leaving it on all summer.  Other than the electric bill, should I be concerned about leaving the AC on all summer while I won't be able to check on it.  Is this acceptable practice?

What about exercising the generator?  Prior to being snow birds, during storage times, we were able to access the MH and run the generator every couple of months.  What precautions should be taken to avoid problems?

We are residents of Michigan, and the annual costs for plates is over $800.
Given that the motorhome will likely spend 12 months/year in Florida, is there a way to register the vehicle in Florida (where I have been told that) the registration is appreciably less.

Any other issues of which we should be aware?

We store ours in a three sided building with 30amp power. The opening faces north so we do not get in sun shining at the coach. We keep the battery charges on and on AC set at 78.

They meter our usage, and during the winter it is around $20 per quarter. Not bad.

Look for storage that provides power if available in your area.

      The year we bought our condo, the Motor Home sat for 14 months in Florida.  It was not covered or walled, however, we made sure the storage facility was paved to prevent dampness from underneath.  We opened both roof vents ever so slightly, and placed a couple of commercially available drying packs in the coach.
    I sprayed for bugs, all around the coach, as well as the tires, and undercarriage of th MH.  We virtually emptied the MH of all material the could attract bugs or vermin, including paper towels, toilet paper or tissues.
    It was in a location that was monitored both by video and drive through patrols.  We did occasionally check on the coach upon our return to Florida and it was pristine.
    We picked up the MH the next April, and proceeded to take a 6,000 mile trip home, all without incident or problems.  New or Used Motor Homes often sit on a dealer's lot for months on end without concern or problems.

I don't know about a MH plates fees in FL.  However, my son moved from WI to FL last year and was shocked when he had to register and get new plates for his two cars.  Someone else with MH can say better.

My generator manual states that it needs to be run 1/2 hr every two weeks or 1 hr every month for proper functioning.

Because all the thunder storms during summer in FL, I would make sure to have a surge protector if you are going plugged.
According to the FL web site they have an initial $250 charge for each registration transferred. I just paid $1001 to register two vehiclec(2012 Jeep and 2011 Journey) and two FL drivers licenses. I didn't ask for a detailed breakdown.

Also note you must show a FL drivers license to register a vehicle. I did not check if there was an alternate to this.

I think you would be making a big mistake by leaving the coach in Florida. Not because of storage issues or anything like that, but simply because you won?t have it with you in Michigan!

You may find yourselves wishing you had it with you for that impromptu summer trip. Michigan and the other northern states are wonderful places to be in the summer. Then you take a trip to New England in late September and follow the fall colors south down I-81 and I-75 to your winter home in Florida for the next winter.

It?s only a 3-day drive from Florida to Michigan. DO IT! ??
We winter in Florida too. We keep our motorhome in Punta Gorda outside open storage @ $80. A month. I go to it about twice a month to exercise the gen, slides and jacks. But what I did notice is how cool it is inside compared to the outside temps. Might be you are between other motorhome which shade you.
    Also the sun isn?t as hot during the winter months. As far as the registration goes, ouch. When transferring title and new plates, approx 100. To transfer title to Florida, 330. For tags, then registration fees. The plates and transfer are a one time shot after that you just pay your yearly reg. Fees.
The vehicle registration and license fees are a small  price to pay for no state income tax.
Ernie n Tara said:
Also note you must show a FL drivers license to register a vehicle. I did not check if there was an alternate to this.


I called and talked with a supervisor and they said I COULD buy a vehicle as an out of State resident IF I had Florida insurance.

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