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Old 10-15-2015, 10:31 AM   #1
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What to buy NOW - planning to fulltime in 9 years.

My wife and I have very loose plans to fulltime in 9 years. We know that we do not want to retire in the town we are in now. Also, our kids are grown and gone and not living anywhere close.

We want to start traveling NOW - short trips no more than 2 weeks at a time - mostly weekend trips.

My wife likes smaller RVs (30' or less) and I like the 35' or more.

I don't think it would make sense to buy our "full-time" rig now since it would be another 9 years old when we finally hit the road.

I'm thinking it might make sense to get a cheaper used RV that is 30' or less so we can explore RVing over the next 9 years - then, buy our fulltime rig in about 8 years.

Does that make sense?

I'm thinking this will give us a chance to see how it is living in something smaller before we take the big plunge.

I don't have any interest in trailers / fifth wheels / pop-ups / etc.

Would probably look at a Class C gas for now and a Class A diesel for later.

Comments? Words from the wise?
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Old 10-15-2015, 10:36 AM   #2
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Sounds like a perfect plan.
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Old 10-15-2015, 10:39 AM   #3
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The only issue I can see with your plan will be to get your DW , on the same page when it comes to size.
Personally we spend 5 1/2 + months a year in our 38' coach, and both agree we couldn't go full time in anything smaller. Both for the living space and storage would be issues in anything smaller.
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Old 10-15-2015, 11:03 AM   #4
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Nine years is a VERY LONG TIME! I once thought I was in control of my life but very quickly found out that I am not (nobody is). So, I would not even be thinking about full-timing yet (if I were you). I would get a rig that matches your current needs and type of use and enjoy it - learn from it. You will fairly quickly figure out what you like and don't like and may even trade thru 3-4 or more rigs between now and your full-timing start.
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Old 10-15-2015, 11:07 AM   #5
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The only issue I can see with your plan will be to get your DW , on the same page when it comes to size.
Personally we spend 5 1/2 + months a year in our 38' coach, and both agree we couldn't go full time in anything smaller. Both for the living space and storage would be issues in anything smaller.
I think she just sees the 40 bus type RVs and thinks of them as a beast to drive / park / etc. I think starting out in a Class C that she likes will quickly convince her that something bigger is in order for full-timing. We did a two week trip in a 34' Class A and we both had no issues driving it.
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Old 10-15-2015, 11:33 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JFNM View Post
Nine years is a VERY LONG TIME! I once thought I was in control of my life but very quickly found out that I am not (nobody is). So, I would not even be thinking about full-timing yet (if I were you). I would get a rig that matches your current needs and type of use and enjoy it - learn from it. You will fairly quickly figure out what you like and don't like and may even trade thru 3-4 or more rigs between now and your full-timing start.
X 100 !!!

I plan on retiring too.. in about 20 years...

Sorry.. couldn't resist... it was too easy..

JFNM has the best advice.. go out and buy something that will fit your needs RIGHT NOW.. the best way to figure out what you want AND don't want in an RV is to own one and spend time in one..

I always get a chuckle when people come onto this site thinking they are going to buy that one perfect RV based on advice.. as they say, buy your last rig first.. well, let me tell you.. if you are new to the RV world.. there is a steep learning curve.. and that learning curve is an "experienced" base one at that..

My first RV was a 95 HR Vacationer... It had no slides.. it was great.. I got a great deal on it.. it even included bumps and bruises from the previous owner... I called it my "training" RV.. it allowed me to "experience" the RV'ing lifestyle, with minimal investment.. and it allowed me the learning curve of owning and driving one.. I liked that it had the bumps/bruises, as it didn't bother me as much when I accidentally got to close to tree limbs and such while entering/exiting the state park campgrounds (we are primarily weekend warriors with a few long weeks thrown in)..

For the most part driving an RV isn't that difficult.. my GF LOVES to drive ours.. so, I don't think your wife should have an issue, no matter the length.. she may not want to navigate around the campground or back into the site at first.. but general driving the RV to/from the destination is pretty easy..

All I can say is.. Good Luck... and get out there and enjoy the RV'ing lifestyle we all love !!
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Old 10-15-2015, 11:41 AM   #7
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We did a two week trip in a 34' Class A and we both had no issues driving it.
Personally; JMHO; , if you drove a 34', class A , the step up to driving a 40' would be about a two hour learning curve.
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Old 10-15-2015, 12:38 PM   #8
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I'll concur with the others-- buy what you need to use now. Your plan is sound, in that you will have more than ample time to learn just what you do or don't need, do or don't like, and you will come to fully understand the advice that folks will give you. Like.......

1). For the next several years you will be camping in your RV, but then you will be living in it. Big difference, and requires different equipment and approach.

2) Size isn't really that important when it comes to driving and maneuvering. It's not hard, and you learn quickly.

3) Size can be very important when it comes to living space. "Too big" will only last for a couple of weeks. "Too small" will last forever.

4) Some RVs are built better than others. Some are built well enough to withstand the rigors of daily use- 24/7/365- while others are designed from the start with the notion that they will be used 5 - 10 weekends per year. It's just that simple, and high quality costs more. You will learn which builders are which, that quality lasts and junk does not, and you will learn that if your budget has some limitations you are far, far better off to buy a 10 year old high quality coach than a brand new tin box.

You're in for a long ride that will yield a lot of friends and fun. I hope you both enjoy every minute!!


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Old 10-15-2015, 02:17 PM   #9
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Another one here recommending you buy what your budget will allow now and a shorter size is perfectly good for the 9-year wait. You may find you do just fine in a shorter RV but then, you may definitely want a longer one and your wife may agree by that time.

If you're serious about full-timing prepare now by getting out of debt before you start. Buy a cheaper one now and save any extra money in preparation to your full-timing RV later.
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Old 10-21-2015, 11:26 PM   #10
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What to buy NOW - planning to fulltime in 9 years.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wfcentral View Post

My wife likes smaller RVs (30' or less) and I like the 35' or ?



Uh Oh. Tell your Dw Size Matters.


Cheers!
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Old 10-21-2015, 11:55 PM   #11
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I would suggest a large gas powered coach now. Lots of good used ones out there. Excellent for weekenders and 1-2 week vacations a couple three times a year.

Smaller coaches are, well, smaller - living wise. But not driving wise.
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Old 10-22-2015, 07:50 AM   #12
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Twogypsies hit the nail on the head. No matter what coach you choose, plan now to be debt free when you go full time.
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Old 10-22-2015, 09:43 PM   #13
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We had purchased a 29' Class C before we retired and used it to 'learn' on. It was very forgiving and for weekends, 1-2 weeks at a time was a great size, would tow our car easily, and we had wonderful times in her. It was obvious that it would not be good, for us, for fulltiming, but was wonderful for learning.

Nine years is a long time, so remember when looking at RV shows in about 4-5 years that you might be looking at what a good USED RV will be when you do retire. No one can predict now what will be in them in terms of technology, etc. so enjoy the planning time, look at everything, enjoy RVing. And save, save, save. You can't have to much in savings. Also, start decluttering NOW. Tell you kids you don't want 'things' for gifts that take up room.
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Old 10-24-2015, 05:18 PM   #14
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Plan sounds good to me! DW and I have decided to go full timing years ago (joined in 2009 and have been reading tons since). Only 4 yrs remain. We know what the type rig we want and at this point either an Anthem or an Allegro Bus (possibly a Dutch Star). Naturally the brand may change during this 4yr period. We can't wait to pull the trigger. Good luck to you!
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