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Old 06-20-2022, 01:04 AM   #1
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Apartment or RV?

OK, so some of you may have read my first thread, but now that I've had a few days to process this and talk a bit more with my wife and other family, let me kind of restart my previous thread but with a different question...

If you wanted to live part time in three different states, (and you didn't have the funds to just buy 3 houses...) out of these two options, what would be your choice and why: Option 1, buy an RV and stay for a few months at a time in RV parks that allowed for long termers. Option 2: Get short term leases on apartments and just move every 6 months or so.

Here is my pro and con list:

RV option -

pro: 1) We would have our own place that was just ours and we wouldn't have to try to find a new rental place every 6 months or so. 2) We could be more mobile with an RV so if the weather looked crappy or if there was something specific we wanted to do in one of the other places, we could take off and go there for however long. Basically, flexibility.

con: 1) RV's are smaller. 2) Things tend to break on RV's and it can be expensive to fix and hard to find a tech that can work on them. 3) Space at an RV park can be hard to find. 4) Gas is crazy expensive right now and probably will continue to be, if not even worse.

Apartment option -

pro: 1) Stability once we got our place. 2) More room. 3) No maintenance. 4) More cost effective? (Maybe?)

con: 1) Not as flexible 2) We would have to actually move our stuff however often we moved (We would have to live fairly minimally as far as "stuff" goes in either scenario I suppose...)

So, what would your choice be as people who have experienced full time RV living? Am I forgetting anything in my pro/con list? Is there a creative third option you could think of?

Thanks RVers!
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Old 06-20-2022, 03:03 AM   #2
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Well Matt, i been trying to convince wife to sell house live in RV, save $$ wait till market starts to drop , then get another house. lol...

Mail is first problem. Size is 2nd vs House..
As for your situation, Moving your furniture would become a huge pain in butt.
Time spent looking for an apartment, I would think after or even before 1st yr was over, you both would say Hey this isn't working to well..
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Old 06-20-2022, 03:16 AM   #3
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sell house live in RV, save $$ wait till market starts to drop , then get another house.
Bingo.
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Old 06-20-2022, 04:45 AM   #4
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Unfortunately, IMO, you are comparing apples with oranges. Apartments are crazy expensive as well ... but if you BOTH aren't 100% on board and WANTING to do the Full time, RV lifestyle, it won't be for you. How about seeing about renting an Air B & B for a month or two at the location you want? You wouldnot have your own bed, and stuff, but might be less expensive than having to start stop electric, water, lease, moving furniture, etc. Anyway ... like I said, if you both aren't excited about a full time RV lifestyle, it will be an expensive mistake.

I happen to love it. My husband and I retired in 2016 and spent about 8 months a year in the motorhome. However, we had a house to go home to because my husband didn't want to part with stuff. He passed (unfortunately) back in November 2020 from cancer. I sold the house in January 2021 and have been full time since. It was the right move for me, but not for everyone. Good luck in your decisions. Trust your gut!
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Old 06-20-2022, 05:04 AM   #5
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I think DebbieMH is spot on. Personally, if it were only me, no doubt it would be the coach for me. My wife likes the trips, but I'm not convinced she'd love full time. DebbieMH pointed out AirBnB. I think this is a great option. You can bounce around and stay in furnished places. Not necessarily cheap, but apartments aren't either. If it were me, I would first try the coach with the understanding you or your spouse may decide it isn't for them, and you can switch. I'm not sure of your particular situation, but it sounds like you're flexible, so why not give it a go. I don't know your age, but this opportunity doesn't last forever.
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Old 06-20-2022, 05:11 AM   #6
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You would consider packing up, moving, and unpacking again, every 6 months?

Holy moly, I'm starting to ache just thinking about that.....

Once your stuff is in the RV, it's in the RV. You can just go. Moving every 6 months from one apartment to another sounds very difficult to me, unless your idea of minimalist means living out of boxes.

Personally, since you're asking, I would get the RV.
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Old 06-20-2022, 05:35 AM   #7
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We are in our mid 40's. Our kids are grown and live in Texas and Washington. My parents are older and live in California where we live now. So we would like to live part time in all 3 places - at least for awhile. We are planning on selling our house later in the summer and considering trying to be mobile between the three states and waiting to buy another house for a couple of years. My job is flexible so we could theoretically do it - if we could figure out the logistics. After talking, my wife is good with it too. Again, just have to figure out the details. RV or short term rentals seem like the two somewhat practical options I can think of.

I did think of Airbnb too, and did a bit of research, but it's VERY expensive as a full time solution, and we could have nothing that was ours but a suitcase. My wife wouldn't want to do that - and neither would I, really.

It would just be for a couple of years at most. Our stuff that we would want for a future house will stay in storage. We've been practical and stable our whole lives and we will be again in a couple of years. But for now, I think it's a good time for us to think outside the box for a bit and have a little adventure.

My "gut" says to buy a used, good quality class A to live in but I'm considering options... and my "gut feelings" change day to day so I have to try to be logical (and get opinions!) to help me in my decisions.
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Old 06-20-2022, 05:38 AM   #8
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You would consider packing up, moving, and unpacking again, every 6 months?

Holy moly, I'm starting to ache just thinking about that.....

Once your stuff is in the RV, it's in the RV. You can just go. Moving every 6 months from one apartment to another sounds very difficult to me, unless your idea of minimalist means living out of boxes.

Personally, since you're asking, I would get the RV.
We'd have to keep the stuff to a minimum, but hey, why not? It's just for a couple years. Sounds kind of fun to have different short term living situations - for awhile anyway. But RV does sound more appealing. Just clunking around ideas for a semi-mobile lifestyle.
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Old 06-20-2022, 05:57 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Matthew B View Post
We are in our mid 40's. Our kids are grown and live in Texas and Washington. My parents are older and live in California where we live now. So we would like to live part time in all 3 places - at least for awhile. We are planning on selling our house later in the summer and considering trying to be mobile between the three states and waiting to buy another house for a couple of years. My job is flexible so we could theoretically do it - if we could figure out the logistics. After talking, my wife is good with it too. Again, just have to figure out the details. RV or short term rentals seem like the two somewhat practical options I can think of.

I did think of Airbnb too, and did a bit of research, but it's VERY expensive as a full time solution, and we could have nothing that was ours but a suitcase. My wife wouldn't want to do that - and neither would I, really.

It would just be for a couple of years at most. Our stuff that we would want for a future house will stay in storage. We've been practical and stable our whole lives and we will be again in a couple of years. But for now, I think it's a good time for us to think outside the box for a bit and have a little adventure.

My "gut" says to buy a used, good quality class A to live in but I'm considering options... and my "gut feelings" change day to day so I have to try to be logical (and get opinions!) to help me in my decisions.
Make sure you look into the cost of storage vs. the value of the items in storage. Unless you have a bunch of antiques or heirlooms you simply can't part with, it's usually cheaper to sell the furniture and buy new once you settle on a permanent residence. That is if you are talking years, not months.

Good luck.
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Old 06-20-2022, 06:08 AM   #10
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I think the full time RV would be a good option for your situation. Think really hard about the storage thing for your stuff…. In 2 years of paying storage, you might be able to buy all new furniture. Storage costs WILL continue to go up every 6 months. Think about just storing your most treasured momentos, those things that can’t be replaced, at your parents house, or one of your children’s homes.

Do you already have a pickup truck? If not, you can just hire a truck(notice I said hire, NOT rent….let professionals take care of the moving) to move your fifth wheel every 6 months…..much cheaper than buying a big dually truck for little use. You can keep your cars that you drive now.
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Old 06-20-2022, 10:50 AM   #11
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If you are BOTH 100% sure that RVing is doable that would be my choice. (In your first post your wife wasn't for it.)

As someone else stated above, think carefully about putting everything in storage. It's expensive. Furniture and appliances get outdated. Pack up your treasured momentoes and store them at your parents.

Good luck!
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Old 06-20-2022, 11:04 AM   #12
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You guys sound like fulltime RV candidates to me. I would not waste a dime on storage units. If you don't need it, give it to your friends, family or someone in need.
My wife and I are currently challenging ourselves to get rid of any personal items that we can't fit into our own small storage totes. It's harder than most people would think but it sure is nice not hauling around a lifetime of stuff.
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Old 06-20-2022, 12:25 PM   #13
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Yeah, in my first post I said my wife wasn't for it. Well... I'm better at daydreaming and coming up with multiple situations in my head rather than communication sometimes. I know this is one of my weaknesses and we had a long conversation and she helped me to realize this... again... She actually isn't against getting a nice, big, "apartment on wheels" as she calls it, to live in. When I communicated one of my many ideas to her, I guess it was in my "living in a tiny RV so we can park at state park or national park campgrounds all the time" phase. She didn't like it. Then I switched to "giant class A at full hook up places", plan in my head and I guess I didn't communicate the change in plans to her well and got mad at her for not going with the plan that had changed in my head and wasn't communicated to her... Hmm. Like I said, it's a weakness. My brain moves a lot faster than my mouth and then I get mad when someone doesn't understand my thoughts. Anyway, she is OK with my plan now, I think. Maybe I have some minor undiagnosed ADHD. Or maybe I'm just a typical guy... Anyway, I apologized. We're good.

Anyway, in my current plan, The big fifth wheel or Class A would pretty much stay put in a park that we could rent by the month. I still want to travel and explore but when we took off, we could drive in a more economical towed car and stay at Airbnb's or inexpensive hotels. I've been kind of partial to the class A diesel pushers when I'm looking online, but I don't have experience so I could be persuaded in another direction. My grandparents spent a lot of time traveling in a Monaco and then a Country Coach diesel pusher back in the 80's, so maybe it's partially just nostalgia for me. They took me down to Baja, Mexico every year at spring break in their RV to visit my great uncle that lived down in San Felipe. Those were nice rigs! I felt like we were kings of the road, (and I think my grandpa did too!)

I do have a vehicle that could tow *most* 5th wheels - at least if I wasn't going to be driving that much. It's a 1999 Ford f250 Super duty with the v10. It's not a full 1 ton or larger so it wouldn't be perfect. I'm thinking of just selling it as a package deal with my Lance camper that I have on it. Those Lance campers seem to be really in demand!

Yeah, storage... Most things we don't care too much about replacing. Our couches, beds, etc can all go. They served us well for the whole time our kids were growing up. They can mostly all die in peace.

The things we do want to keep are a few pieces of furniture that we really like, sentimental stuff, obviously, plus I have a bunch of tools and gym equipment I spent a lot of money on, guns/gun safe, and I have a couple of little dual sport motorcycles that I dream of riding with my son someday when we settle in our forever home. I have looked around and there is a storage place in the city I live in that just has a bunch of shipping containers that they rent out for pretty cheap. You got 4 choices - 8x10, 8x20, 8x30 or 8x40. No frills storage at a no frills price!

Thanks for the input, all!
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Old 06-20-2022, 01:01 PM   #14
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She actually isn't against getting a nice, big, "apartment on wheels" as she calls it, to live in. When I communicated one of my many ideas to her, I guess it was in my "living in a tiny RV so we can park at state park or national park campgrounds all the time" phase. She didn't like it. Then I switched to "giant class A at full hook up places", plan in my head and I guess I didn't communicate the change in plans to her well ..... Anyway, I apologized. We're good.
Good that you're both good!

One thing to note.... you absolutely can stay in many national parks and state parks with a big RV. We did with our 40' motorhome. (not in CA for state parks though). We've stayed in the major ones... Yellowstone, Grand Teton, Glacier, Rocky Mtn., Grand Canyon, Bryce, Zion, Capitol Reef and more. So if you get a big RV keep that in mind. No... you won't fit in every site but there are many that you can.
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