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Old 03-30-2014, 08:19 AM   #1
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Help in developing a FT monthly budget

We are going to purchase a New Class A DP. First time we will own anything like this. The vehicle will probably be the Forest River Berkshire 400 BH. We will be FT. Toad will be something in the range of <20K

We are trying to budget, many items we know the $'s, but here are a couple of things we are trying to get a better handle on the monthly costs.

1. Regular vehicle insurance:

Motorhome
Toad

2. Road Service ( Like AAA, but for RV's)

3. Extended Warranty ( This one is hard to understand as the RV will be new so don't know if we need it right away or wait until the warranty expires. Still need to budget.)

First question - is which type of policy. Many seem to recommend an exclusionary policy vs. inclusionary. Not sure if I know the difference.

Second - is a policy that has a consequential damages rider. I believe this covers damage you may cause to others, but my question is wouldn't this be part of the actual vehicle policy? Why would it be under the extended warranty policy?


4. Balancing the camp site costs vs. fuel costs. I realize that this is a lifestyle question and will be different for everyone. I would say initially we will be travelers more than campers, but still I could see us putting up on a beach campsite in Florida for a couple of months. On our initial budget we have camp sites at 1500 / month based on 50/night. Then we have fuel at 500 month, thinking here is that is 100 gallons or 1000 miles/month. I think that we are light on fuel and heavy on campsites as if we are moving we won't be in campgrounds (maybe a Wal-Mart or rest area for a night or two)

5. Medical coverage: We will be on Medicare, but right now I have to say we are not sure how that works. We see Plan A and Plan B, but then there is also supplemental. Any idea of how you budget for that would help.

6. Telephone, Sat TV and Internet

Thanks to all that have read this far as I realize this is a bit of a laundry list. We are not big spenders, but do like a bit of comfort. As we are looking at the initial cost of the RV we realize that our actual costs of owning it a going FT will effect what we actually spend up front. Any sanity and experience on what others experience for costs on a monthly basis well be a real help.

Thanks in advance for any input and it will really be appreciated.

Jim and Clatie
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Old 03-30-2014, 08:32 AM   #2
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#4 If you truly want to be ON the beach in FL, figure more like $100/nite and up. Remember this is what every snowbird wants! State parks are much cheaper, but seem to be impossible(for me) to get a site in the desirable months. You are allowed to book 365 days ahead, so try it out!
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Old 03-30-2014, 08:37 AM   #3
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If you haven't seen this website yet these folks have been FTing for a long time and have documented a lot of their experience, including costs and budgeting. Check it out, may help getting you started: Financial Information

Good luck with your adventures and happy trails.
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Old 03-30-2014, 09:16 AM   #4
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Glenn references the site RV-Dreams which has a lot of good information. They also,have periodically seminars on FT. If you can find one I would suggest you try and attend.
Your estimated fuel mileage is a bit high at 10 MPG. I would use a more realistic figure like 7.5 and be happy if you get more than that.
Average site cost can be mitigated somewhat by boondocking a couple of nights.
Insurance costs seem to be all over the place. You'll just have to shop around or go the and independent agent. Many dealers provide that service.
Again check out Glenn's suggestion.
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Old 03-30-2014, 09:20 AM   #5
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1) remember that you will need "fulltimers insurance" which is a combination of homeowners & vehicle in one policy. Lots of variables in the price depending on location, past insur, credit report, coverages, deductibles, etc. but for a ball park - $1200 (MH) +$600 (toad)
2) Coach-Net or Good Sam ERS - approx. $120 /yr
3) personal opinion here, but only people who failed grade school math buy extended warranties. Create a budget for maint & repairs, put the money in your own account and save the markup & profit.
4) sounds like a reasonable starting point
5) Medicare only pays for 80% of covered costs, so most also carry a supplement plan which pays the other 20% and all the deductibles and some other costs. the most popular is Suppl plan F, but you get to choose from a long menu of plans. price varies slightly by home state & provider, my suppl F costs about $120 /mon
6) lots of options here based on your personal preferences, and easy to get price quotes online.
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Old 03-30-2014, 09:23 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by campbell36 View Post
1. Regular vehicle insurance:

Motorhome
Toad
That's going to be impossible to answer since insurance rates are based on so many different variables: What you are insuring, the levels of insurance, where you are domiciled, your driving record, even your credit rating all go into figuring insurance rates.

I'd suggest that you call several insurance agencies who specialize in RV insurance...and fulltimers insurance...to get quotes for YOUR situation. Places like Miller's RV Insurance, Gilbert RV Insurance, etc.

Quote:
2. Road Service ( Like AAA, but for RV's)
Check out these two websites:

Good Sam ERS: RV Roadside Assistance Services – Good Sam – RV and Auto road side assistance
CoachNet ERS: Home Page - Coach-Net.com

Quote:
3. Extended Warranty ( This one is hard to understand as the RV will be new so don't know if we need it right away or wait until the warranty expires. Still need to budget.)

First question - is which type of policy. Many seem to recommend an exclusionary policy vs. inclusionary. Not sure if I know the difference.
I'll let someone else answer this, since I don't know much about extended warranties.



Quote:
4. Balancing the camp site costs vs. fuel costs. I realize that this is a lifestyle question and will be different for everyone. I would say initially we will be travelers more than campers, but still I could see us putting up on a beach campsite in Florida for a couple of months. On our initial budget we have camp sites at 1500 / month based on 50/night. Then we have fuel at 500 month, thinking here is that is 100 gallons or 1000 miles/month. I think that we are light on fuel and heavy on campsites as if we are moving we won't be in campgrounds (maybe a Wal-Mart or rest area for a night or two)
That's way more than we spend per month on campsite costs!!! But, then, we boondock 99% of the time and when we are in RV parks, we wouldn't pay $50 per night (but we also don't RV in Florida, which I understand is more expensive). For example, since we bought our new RV at the end of December, we've spent $211.52 in RV park costs!

Your fuel costs and RV park costs can be regulated somewhat by staying longer in one place...a week costs less than the daily rate X 7 and a month costs even less on a daily basis.

Quote:
5. Medical coverage: We will be on Medicare, but right now I have to say we are not sure how that works. We see Plan A and Plan B, but then there is also supplemental. Any idea of how you budget for that would help.
Be sure that you get a supplement which will work anyplace in the country. AARP's medicare supplement fits the bill...don't know about other companies. A good place to get information on medicare is at Medicare.gov. You can also go to AARP's medicare supplement website to get rates.

Quote:
6. Telephone, Sat TV and Internet
I can tell you what we spend:

We have Verizon for both telephone and Internet (we use our smartphone as a hot spot). For 10GB per month, we spend $140 plus taxes. You can spent less if you pay for less GB per month. Or you can separate the two using Millenicom for Internet ($69.99 for 20GB, no taxes, no contract) and then using a pay-as-you-go phone...something like Wal Mart's Straight Talk.

We use Dish for satellite TV and have their America's 120 package which is around $59 per month plus taxes. There are less expensive packages as well as more expensive packages.
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