Originally Posted by ie2special
We actually agree on things, the dilemma is if we want to stay in LA and retire, retire and go to FL, retire and go elsewhere, or stay in the military.....we actually don't want to decide yet.
I'd get something cheap for the time being but I don;t want to lose our nest egg in depreciation and not be able to get the higher end one in a few years.
We also have an extra teenager this year and a dog. They go to college summer 2015. If we get a fancy one now we'd want to full time and that is a lot of pet hair in a fancy coach, that doesn't make hubby happy
My $.02 based on what you just said...
I would not buy anything based around teenager and dog that will be gone. Creative use of an air mattress (we do that with our grand kids) for weekend or even a couple week jaunts seems quite acceptable.
Cheap doesn't mean bad shape. If you truly think a big DP is in your future but you want a "starter", find an older DP in good shape. You WILL *probably* lose money in depreciation but nothing like going newer. Stay a tad conservative and center your search on one with the basics. To me, the basics are forced air furnace, RV refer and a hitch that will support what ever toad you plan to use. I would also look for one with 2-3 slides unless you find a nice, CHEAP tag axle unit. I suggest 40' or less and without a tag. However, as much as I love my tag axle, the fact that we planned to FT in it steered us towards the tag and 43'.
Now, if you do find a unit within the "cheap" range with aqua hot and some other doodads, great. just keep your eyes open and don't let the glitz of new MHs blind you to mildly used MHs out there waiting for a good owner.
In the end I don't think there is even a large minority of RVers that bought their last coach first. It is a great goal but too many things happen when you get the first one. You learn and grow in it to hopefully discover that what you got was really what you thought it was. Unlike going to Kohl's and trying on pants until you find just the right one, MH purchases rely on both a well defined idea of what you want along with a little luck that you got what you thought you would get.
As an example, when we bought our first one we didn't know what we didn't know. Don't even want to talk about the SHORT queen bed we didn't realize was short.
We also didn't understand the dynamics of weight and balance and found we maxed out the rear axle weight way too easy. HOWEVER...I wouldn't trade away that experience because what we learned from our first one made our second purchase much more suited to our desires.
Is it the perfect MH...NOPE! We scrapped the RV refer for a residential, as I type we are at MCD getting all new shades, later this year we get a new floor. The floor plan is good but it has a couple things we thought were good in design that haven't been as good in practice. Still...we love our coach.
That is MY story and it worked for Sandee and me. You will have to find your own story and be ready for the twists and turns and do your best to find a rig that meets the mission's parameters (You husband will like that analogy), comes in under budget (Your husband will know how silly it is to even SAY that) and keeps you both on the same page and in the same frame of mind.
The final military analogy...A battle plan only survives until the first bullet is fired. That is absolutely true with RVing. To me, the key is to understand that, factor that into your plan's budget, and then be prepared to accept you didn't factor everything because you just can't. As long as you do that, have room for the unexpected and adapt to what is in front of you, you can thrive.