Was fulltiming a great decision or a mistake?

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DonTom

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I have heard of people who sold their only house and went fulltiming. I hear some people believe it was the best decision of their lives as others regret doing such.

What are the odds of each?

How much did you have to give up? Obviously, if I did such, I won't have my ten motorcycles any more. Won't see local friends as often, and various other issues. So what did you miss the most and what do you enjoy the most?

One thing I know I would like is chasing the best weather around the country, just as do most full-timers.

I am not real serious about doing such, but the thought does pop into my head quite often.

-Don- Auburn, CA (71° F here today).
 

SeilerBird

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Full timing was my best decision ever. I missed nothing about mowing lawns, cleaning a gigantic house or crazy neighbors. I don't need to chase good weather, it is always good weather in central Florida. So far this winter I have had to put on my long pants for two days, the rest of the time I wear shorts.
 

X-Roughneck Strike 3

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Full Timing was a thought, but we chose not to.

I kicked the idea around of Full Timing as we sold our House that we lived in for almost 11 years in San Antonio back during the summer of 2019. At that time we lived in Stone Oak, North San Antonio. I quit working, so I knew cheaper, less gasoline, less miles required for daily living was a must. My little town we currently live in is around 100K so 1 HD, 1 Lowes and couple HEB, Walmart x3 rule the Grocer monopolies down in these parts.

In San Antonio, I had way too Much Gas, Tax, daily miles and HOA ever to think I could comfortably retire there. I also decided to pull the plug on my GS 12 Step 7 Career and celebrate my Quit-ment also 3 weeks shy of my 57th Birthday. Shoe string budgets were my self inflicted reality. I went into it, eyes wide open. I have Military Retirement and TRICARE health insurance for me and my better half, so am able to walk away from it all. I am very fortunate.

BTW, I love been poor and broke!

We had Texas as a possible landing areas when we planned the move full timers was on the table also. I was looking at Phetons and even a Tiffen 34PA when we were really considering that route. Once we decided house and RV it was Class C all the way.

The, “What if I wrecked this”, and I have 2 dogs and a wife, not a lot of Hotel Cash Saved up made me say…Naaaw. Going to have to pass on that idea shortly after it entered my mind.

Being somewhat near a Military installation was really the only must have we had on the board when planning the move for us. Ultimately, I returned to the place where I spent the first 26 years of life. Right here near the Geographic center of Texas (Eden), town I have renamed as Bad Water, at least unofficially in my mind.

Knowing what I know now. BTW, we opted for (Simple Home with custom Concrete Launch Pad, Hail, Sun Protection / RV Steel Port Covered area, No HOA, Small Town, Lower Taxes, and Bad Water) that was the wise choice for me us, carcinogens and all other factors duly noted.

I over plan 100% of everything. I drive me and all the people I love crazy over thinking everything.

A view from my Perch, on the Tree of life. I am just Monday morning QBn here...

This past year of COVID uncertainty... Had I been a Full Timer,

My situation (Unlike-Florida Tom) would have been I would have kicked off the Pandemic with no long term place secured. Right there I would have had the blood pressure up.

The uncertainty of where I would have been staying would have been too much for my mind to deal with. Undoubtedly I would have drove myself crazier than I am.

I would have had the Broken Record playing,.. the constant questions of,

Where can I book and how much is it?

How much gas will I have to burn to get there?


It would have drove me insane. If you are forced to traverse wide open spaces driving a V10 at 7 MPG-ish you need to have somewhat large budget for Gas and ready to pay more for the foreseeable future.

Unless you are prepared to go off grid, I am not, I got 100 watt panel on the roof and two House Batteries currently, without an adequate battery bank and roof top input you are will be forced into somewhat Primitive living.

You better have some power management skills or you going to be killing batteries too, LOL.

Shoe String Budgeters need to think out that reality of working on the road with Borrowed or Leased WIFI floating around in your neck of the woods, so to speak also. Cell phone service is not a Given too.

Because we opted Class C set up, purchased going in we knew were not Full Timing.

Our Class C Tanks are way to small to be Full Timing. 2 Dogs so RV is pretty Full. The walls start closing in at 3 weeks for me and I got to get out of the thing.

I can say 1115 ft house on a 6500 ft city lot feels huge when returning to our spot at the edge of the Desert.

Just like anything giving up the Sticks and Bricks, the situation is different once you are really there. I could not have imagined living in a RV this past week during this cold spell we had either.

The outside Temp in a Class C is almost the inside temp as the roofs are thin. The More Slides you have, I have three (3) the more air draft you are going to have. Slides can be a double edge sword especially if you got one that is inop.

To all those Full Timers or just RVrs out here in Internet land who rode out that cold snap down here in Unprepared for Texas, hope ya’LL rode out the storm unscathed and are doing well.

JD
 

Ex-Calif

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I just became a full timer January 23rd - I'll let you know - LOL...

Actually it's been a really busy month and for the first time a couple days ago I realized that having kids, friends and relatives pop in for a stay is gonna be pretty tight and near impossible.

When something breaks now it's not just a camping "inconvenience" - Your house just broke and your alternative is a hotel. If the engine or whatever breaks down it could be in some very inconvenient places.

It basically rained the whole week last week. I only got outside a couple times the whole week - grocery shopping for example. I didn't get "stir" crazy but I wasn't really happy by the end of the week.

The biggest issue is the toys and my workshop. I have decided to buy a property and build a garage to store my stuff and have a home base. I am now thinking to build a bunkhouse for visitors with toilet and shower facilities and can see it being a sneak-aboard place that I may spend some time in too.

We do plan long trips in the RV - up to months at a time but even early days I am thinking that "only" having an RV may not be for me.

The other issue is that like a mobile home you are giving up an appreciating asset for a depreciating asset and if you plan "long term" you may need to replace your house with a newer one at some point so factor that into the finances.
 

Seon

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...The other issue is that like a mobile home you are giving up an appreciating asset for a depreciating asset and if you plan "long term" you may need to replace your house with a newer one at some point so factor that into the finances.

Very good point that other's may or may not have considered.
 

DonTom

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Full timing was my best decision ever. I missed nothing about mowing lawns, cleaning a gigantic house or crazy neighbors. I don't need to chase good weather, it is always good weather in central Florida. So far this winter I have had to put on my long pants for two days, the rest of the time I wear shorts.
I don't mind mowing lawns much, gives me a little exercise and I am then outside. And I have three lawns to mow. But not at all this time of year. But I do hate house cleaning. So I do as little of it as reasonably possible. I would rather clean out (or work on) my RV.

I have wanted to visit Florida for a while, I have never been there. I would like to visit the Everglades someday.

-Don- Auburn, CA
 

Lou Schneider

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I've been a fulltimer with a twist for about 15 years. While I was working I was priced out of the booming San Francisco and LA real estate markets, so instead of spending most of my income on an apartment or commuting an hour or two each way from areas with affordable housing I found close-in RV parks with monthly rates and started living in my RV. This also made the RV available for weekend and vacation trips.

Frugal living let me retire with a nice nest egg and I purchased a lot in the Escapees Pahrump, NV co-op park as a home base for taxes, vehicle registration, etc., with the intention of only spending a few weeks there each spring and fall. The low cost lets me have a home base while also living comfortably on just my Social Security income and still being able to travel during the summer and winter months. But with the pandemic I wound up staying there most of the past year and it was nice to have a guaranteed place to stay as things shut down.
 

DonTom

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BTW, I love been poor and broke!
I assume you mean "being" in above.

If so, then you enjoy these related hassles:

Where can I book and how much is it?

How much gas will I have to burn to get there?


It would have drove me insane.

I prefer to not have such worries. But if I went fulltiming, I wouldn't. I have a lot of things to sell, starting with three houses. And I have very good retirement income. And so I would have a nice RV, perhaps a small but fancy Class A.

These days, It's just me, so I don't need a lot of room, and I will be outside the RV as much as possible.

But to go to full-timing would be a major change in my life. I wonder how I would feel about it after a couple of years.

But I have also thought about being a semi-full-timer (is there such a thing?). IOW, keep one of my houses as I mostly fulltime. But then there are a few small issues, such as who will mow the lawn! But I guess I could hire and make arrangements with a gardener for that type of stuff.

In fact, that is probably the best idea. Keep one house and after a few years, I can decide if I want to sell it or keep it.

-Don- Auburn, CA
 

Tom

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One piece of advice that's been shared with would-be fulltimers here many times over the years ...

Be sure you have an exit plan. As an example, many times we've seen folks count the days to retirement, have a yard sale, sell the house, put all their equity into an expensive motorhome, and hit the road. Somewhere down the road, one half (in the case of couples) gets very sick or, worse, passes away. Having spent all that equity on a depreciating RV, they *or a surviving spouse) are unable to get back into the housing market.
 

DonTom

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Frugal living let me retire with a nice nest egg and I purchased a lot in the Escapees Pahrump, NV co-op park as a home base for taxes, vehicle registration, etc., with the intention of only spending a few weeks there each spring and fall.
I didn't even know there was an SKP in Pahrump. But never looked.

I have stayed a week at the SKP in Benson, AZ a few years ago.

I was at the Wine Ridge RV Park in Pahrump for a week last November. By any chance were you in Pahrump then also?

-Don- Auburn, CA
 

Ex-Calif

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There are a lot of ways to structure things.

I had a buddy do an overseas tour. He knew it wasn't gonna be permanent and found a company to manage his house while he was gone. Cut the grass, watch out for leaks and breakdowns and collaborate with owner on how to get them fixed and manage the fix. They managed his place for 5 years. He didn't want to rent it out.

My brother is retiring from SoCal. He is selling one house (that he lives in) and is keeping the rental. His exit strategy is to move back into the one currently rented. He's not RV-ing, he's going to Canada for a while to "try it out" again. Spouse is Canadian and wants to live "at home" for a while after 20+ years in the US.

So you could leave a kept house empty or rent it out.

I'm building a "home base" which is basically gonna be an RV pad and a secure building for the foreseeable future. We plan to do extended 4-6 month trips for a while. Eventually we may slow down the nomad part and build a house on the land.

Amen to one spouse running out of money. I have already met several widows (sadly it is usually the female) who's spouse died, they live in a stationary (immobile) RV that they can barely afford to keep the water from leaking in and they are absolutely stuck with only SSI to live on.

Outliving your money is a really bad thing to do...
 

DonTom

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He didn't want to rent it out.
I also refuse to rent out any of my three houses. I mainly just need the garage room for all my junk and my ten motorcycles. If I decide to fulltime, I need to get rid of nine of them. I will still keep my small electric that I always take on my trailer hitch when I go RVing.

Perhaps my biggest issue to go full-timing would be all the junk I need to get rid of.

I don't have to worry about out-living my money. Beside, as Sellerbird explained elsewhere in this forum, I also prefer to die broke! I hate saving money, I prefer to spend it! I guess that is how I ended up with ten motorcycles and three houses and tons of other junk that I would have to get rid of to go fulltiming. My Tesla, also, as well as a couple of Jeeps and pickup truck and a couple of cars. As well as the old junky RV I now have.

But I kinda like old junky RVs for one reason, I can modify it all I want, drill holes in it for my ham radio cables, etc. Stuff I won't do to a new fancy RV. But if I do go fulltiming, a fancy new small Class A would be very high on my list.

"Any man who dies with more than $10,000 to his name is a failure.”
― Errol Flynn


-Don- Auburn, CA
 

Laura & Charles

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Could be anywhere. Originally from Ohio (Go Bucks!
We started full timing in June, 2016 and rented the house out. After first year, we moved back into the house to get it ready to put on the market while having some remodeling done to the coach. Closed on the house sale from Sundance, WY.
After 3.5 years we decided we were either going to either hang up the keys or upgrade from our starter coach. Picked up Rosie January, 2020.
So, to your question: best decision ever, zero regrets. We’re blessed that we both work remote and found each other and can do this before retirement.
 

DonTom

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We’re blessed that we both work remote and found each other and can do this before retirement.
Yeah, That does sound like a great life especially for when still working.

I retired just before year 2014.

I think I will find a lot of pluses and minuses for me to do real fulltiming, which will make it a difficult decision. It would be major change for me.

-Don- Auburn, CA
 

John From Detroit

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Things change as time goes by.
At the time Wife and I dumped the house and moved into the Motor home full time. One of the better decisions we made (not the best. we made the best back in 1978.. We decided to get married)

And today.. for reasons that do not include the fact said motor home got totaled by a truck driver... It's not such a good idea... And next week I hop in my car and drive to Hospital (The reason) for a procedure. I have a pick up driver but I don't want to get her out of bed at 5Am. if needed I'll catch a daylight ride back for my car.

I'm getting to the point where I need to live closer to my medical team.. Not that big a problem but I keep flunking tests. No symptoms.. just flunk tests.
 

Old_Crow

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My wife and I had been full time for 4 years. We sold the house last year, butat the time she passed, my wife was talking about finding a home base somewhere.
Now that she's gone, I'm happy to be in the motor home. All but one of my kids have moved away from Arkansas and are scattered around the US, so, no interest in going back there.
I have committed to continuing my hosting duties for at least this year. After that, I think I'm going to travel. Don't really have a place I'd like to settle down yet.
 

Dragginourbedaround

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It was a great decision for us. We retired in May of 2015, sold the house, sold the kids and bought a 2011 35' Winnebago MH. We have 5 kids spread all over the country (Vegas, Ft. Collins, CO, Rye, NH, 2 in Alexandria, VA and a family reunion Danvers, MA) and we would travel to each kid and spend about a month with them. Except each year we would spend more time with the one in Ft Collins. We loved the summers there. We would winter in SW FL then travel to our son in Vegas and see friends, family and sights along the way, then make a big loop and end up in SW FL for the winter. We would make about 30 stops a year. After 5 years my mother (in SW FL and 93 at the time) got sick and after about 6 weeks it was obvious we would have to buy a house and move her in and care for her full time. No regrets, this is such a beautiful country and we saw a lot of it. Made a bunch of new friends we would cross paths with as we travelled, and so many great memories.
 

kayenbeck

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Full timing was my best decision ever. I missed nothing about mowing lawns, cleaning a gigantic house or crazy neighbors. I don't need to chase good weather, it is always good weather in central Florida. So far this winter I have had to put on my long pants for two days, the rest of the time I wear shorts.
indeed, you are correct. I wear my slick cyberpunk pants in this climate. I feel cool and simple. I don't miss yards and so on.
 

Lordismyshepherd

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We took a different approach, the house is paid off. For us the cost to keep and maintain the house, which we budgeted for, does not outweigh the risk of not having somewhere to call home if we happen to experience a life altering situation during our traveling years. After all at some point, age, death, or who knows what else will dictate that we surrender our nomad lifestyle.
 
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