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Old 03-11-2019, 08:40 PM   #1
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So my wife and I are heading out in 2020 to full time, we'll be giving our notices about this time next year. (so excited).

I have done all the modeling, getting with a financial advisor at fidelity, and we are green lights, and have budgeted for $4k a month worst case. We are debt free, and will be selling or renting our house (still deciding on that one).

My question is, what have you all that have full timed, got away with on for a monthly budget? I have included all I can think of on my spreadsheet, insurance, medical, maintenance, food, propane, campsites, etc. What have you all found is realistic? Now I know this is very subjective based on interests, hobbies, habits etc, I just want to check if I'm being realistic. We do like to eat out occasionally, once every couple weeks, which I've budgeted also, and a museum or two now and then, but mostly we just plan on taking it easy and pursuing hobbies, blogging, photography, reading and sight seeing. Nothing spectacular. I guess this is kind of an informal poll to check my reality.....
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Old 03-11-2019, 08:44 PM   #2
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My budget is about $8,000 a month and neither the house nor MH are paid off. If I sell the house I can pay both off. That would be nice.
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Old 03-11-2019, 09:03 PM   #3
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We are just about to embark on that journey. We've decided that we're selling the house; I don't want to be in the real estate market in the next 12-18 months (just my personal opinion). I'm still working full time, and will be for the next 4 years (I work from home), but we're budgeting $4k/month for living with no debt. I believe that's a very reasonable number. Note that we will not be traveling much; we have a place on a mountain lake that we stay at for the summer, and winter back down in Florida where we live.
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Old 03-11-2019, 11:17 PM   #4
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Medical can be a real problem if not on Medicare. What are you doing re domicile? You want somewhere that is friendly towards fulltimers, easy to adjust jury duty, easy absentee voting, good mail services, no state income taxes. FL, SD, and TX are the usual picks.

Then think about living/travel style. The first 5 years we did two week stays, then move down the road. 1-2 week stays are ideal of using membership parks and we saved a LOT of money that way. If longer stays are more to you liking, then monthly rates can save money.

Plan to spend the first six months overspending your budget - there are things you have to try to figure out what you like. Plus you will be in ‘vacation’ mode. After about six months you’ll slow down and realize it is ok to spend extra time. The 2-2-2 rule when going from a to b is good to follow. 200 miles a day, in park by 2:00 pm, stay 2 days or more. We will at times go 3 days straight, followed by a week in one place, but we really follow the other two pretty closely. Passport America is a good program for discount parks for travel nights.

Another tip, read the blogs of people who post on different forums. Usually you’ll find links in their signature lines. This will help you understand the different ways of fulltiming.
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Old 03-11-2019, 11:49 PM   #5
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FTd for 7 yrs
NO Debt
Traveled weekly/bi-monthly....we hit the road to travel and see USA
We did what we wanted, saw what we wanted, went where we wanted

All easily done on $3K/month


We did save on CG site fees:
* Used PassPort America when convenient. $44/yr to join and participating CGs allow 50% discount on daily rate. Each CG has their own restrictions ---length of stay, day of week or no restrictions.
*Purchased a 'CG Membership' with Affiliate CGs -----up to 2 week stays at $10/15 night full hookup sites. Bought Home Park and the Affiliate programs via RESALE market. Made use when it was convenient to use. BIG Savings!
*Stayed at Fairgrounds....relatively inexpensive. Camping sites available when Carnivals/Rodeos/Fairs NOT scheduled
*Some small towns/cities have 'parks'....low costs
*VFW/American Legion/Elks etc ----some have a few RV Parking for small fee if a member
*Boondocking......lots of BLM and just out in the toolies camping


Biggest expense was FUEL. Diesel was $2.85 when took off and got as high as $5

We typically traveled 260 miles between places but we would put 500-800 miles on truck out/about exploring the sights/local areas for the week/2 weeks we would be there.
Mondays were travel day.....leave by 10AM & setting up by 3PM


Medical Coverage.....
I use VA Medical and we 'self covered' for her (paid cash) course she is healthy and costs were lower then premiums/deductibles


Site Fees......got to stay some where every night (never Wally Docked)
Fuel....got to fill the tank daily
Medical....could be huge expense so plan accordingly
Debt Free.....best way to do it. No 'financial yoke' around your neck
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Old 03-12-2019, 12:18 AM   #6
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^^^GOOD Advice^^^^^
We are looking at $2,500 to $3,500 a month out of pocket.
Currently (as of today) have the home on the market. (no debt)
Will take the proceeds of the home and furnishings/cars/pickups/boats to be invested towards our "Plan B" for when we no longer are able to travel.
ie: a small cottage/mobile home/park model that is located in an agreeable taxation,weather/fishing/medical region of the USA..
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Old 03-12-2019, 07:54 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drjenk View Post
So my wife and I are heading out in 2020 to full time, we'll be giving our notices about this time next year. (so excited).

I have done all the modeling, getting with a financial advisor at fidelity, and we are green lights, and have budgeted for $4k a month worst case. We are debt free, and will be selling or renting our house (still deciding on that one).

My question is, what have you all that have full timed, got away with on for a monthly budget? I have included all I can think of on my spreadsheet, insurance, medical, maintenance, food, propane, campsites, etc. What have you all found is realistic? Now I know this is very subjective based on interests, hobbies, habits etc, I just want to check if I'm being realistic. We do like to eat out occasionally, once every couple weeks, which I've budgeted also, and a museum or two now and then, but mostly we just plan on taking it easy and pursuing hobbies, blogging, photography, reading and sight seeing. Nothing spectacular. I guess this is kind of an informal poll to check my reality.....

Don't forget to consider inflation cost. During the last 10 years the things I need have doubled in cost, like upgrading to a new RV, new truck cost, and medical insurance. Even a RV site cost can be $50/night+ which was unheard of 10 years ago.
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Old 03-12-2019, 08:47 AM   #8
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Get hold of member JRPA here on the forum. Bob's got a YouTube channel called "Next Exit" and, at the end of every month, he details their spending on a spreadsheet. It's very informative.

Steve
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Old 03-12-2019, 09:26 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jean n Steve View Post
Get hold of member JRPA here on the forum. Bob's got a YouTube channel called "Next Exit" and, at the end of every month, he details their spending on a spreadsheet. It's very informative.

Steve
I checked out their site. Here is a link to one of their videos where he does a month end expense sheet. It also lists expenses for the previous two months. They all look under 4000 a month. Cheers.
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Old 03-12-2019, 10:46 AM   #10
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Lots of You Tube channels out there where they talk about full time and budgets. If you boondock a lot and have Solar you can save quite a bit.
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Old 03-12-2019, 10:57 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by winniman View Post
I checked out their site. Here is a link to one of their videos where he does a month end expense sheet. It also lists expenses for the previous two months. They all look under 4000 a month. Cheers.
Yep, they started out at about $40K in annual costs, but that's been slowly creeping up over time. No surprise there, I guess.

Bob details their costs more thoroughly than anyone else we've seen.
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Old 03-12-2019, 01:12 PM   #12
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There's a retired guy on Youtube that has no debt, he and his wife are doing it on about $3500 a month in a large class A.
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Old 03-12-2019, 03:36 PM   #13
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$4,000 per month seems to be the sweet spot from reading and watching lots of blogs/channels on budgets. Typically with an odd exception most we've found have been within +/-15% of that assuming travelling somewhat from place to place, but not excessively racking up huge miles, or staying in ultra top notch Resorts daily rate or spending 6 months at a time in Quartzite or similar.

So for balance and obviously not spending $2,000+ a month on alcohol/
gambling/tobacco/fine dining/insert other here, $4,000 appears to be a pretty good ball park to work with for us to have a perfectly enjoyable FT RV lifestyle. Well based on today's costs at least!

Happy Travels.
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Old 03-12-2019, 08:10 PM   #14
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We are just under 5K a month and we do not use RV resorts very often. Other non RV expanses add up (health insurance, car and MH insurance, medicines, to name a few).
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