How to Prepare to Live in an RV


Recreational vehicles have been an integral part of the American landscape for many years, and a lot of people own, rent, and enjoy RVs all the time. Typically, RVs are used for traveling and only lived-in temporarily while people are touring around the country or enjoying road trip fun with family and friends.

However, some people take RVing further than a hobby, choosing to actually live full-time in their campers. In fact, reports state that more than a million Americans have made the switch to RV living, and if that sounds like something you’d enjoy too, you’ll need to prepare properly. It can be a great experience to live in an RV, but this kind of lifestyle change demands at least some preparation and planning. Read on for tips and tricks to help you make the switch.

Make Sure You Understand the Legality

One of the common questions people have when thinking about living in an RV is “Is it legal to live in a camper in my own backyard?” and the truth is that the answer to this question is in a bit of a gray area. It’s not always clear, one way or another, whether or not you’re fully allowed to make the change.

While the US Department of Housing and Urban Development has not classified RVs as permanent dwellings, which helps to reduce a lot of red tape, there are still state and city laws that can pose challenges and obstacles to people who want to move into an RV. You’ll need to do your research, contact the relevant authorities, and perhaps even speak with a lawyer to get the full picture and best advice.

Declutter and Accept a Minimalist Life

One of the most obvious differences between living in a house and living in an RV is that you’ll have a lot less space in your RV. What’s more, the space you do have needs to be used cleverly in order to give you the best living experiences; shelves and storage areas, for example, will need to be used for your most important items, and you can’t have too much clutter taking up room in an RV. In short, you’ll need to adopt a minimalist lifestyle.

If you’re already a minimalist, this shouldn’t be a problem, but if you own a lot of stuff, you’ll need to declutter before you make the move. You can give stuff away, sell it on in a yard sale, or even put it into storage if you like. In addition, once you’ve made the move, you’ll need to keep your spending habits in check to avoid re-cluttering your new life.

Consider At-Home Work and Side Hustles for Extra Cash

One of the benefits of moving into an RV is that you can save a lot of cash when compared to living in a house or renting an apartment. However, there are still going to be costs that need to be covered, such as fuel and energy, as well as regular repairs and maintenance. You’ll need to make sure you can keep up with the costs of running your RV, while still enjoying the RV lifestyle.

One way to do this is to consider some at-home jobs you can actually do on the road, as well as additional side hustles that can bring in additional cash without having to actually take up a lot of your time or resources. You can find a lot of work online creating digital content, managing social media, entering data, and more, or you could sell crafts, create your own travel blog, and so on.

Make Sure You Have All the Essentials

If you’re going to be living full-time in an RV, it’s very different compared to just spending a couple of weeks in one for a road trip. On a road trip, it doesn’t matter all that much if you forget one or two items, as you can cope until you get home. However, in an RV full-time, anything you forget to bring along will need to be replaced, and those costs can add up.

Before you get into the RV, make a checklist of all the essential living items you’ll need and make sure to prepare each and every one. This includes cooking utensils and appliances like toasters, blenders, and water filters, as well as all the essential RV gear like tools, wheel chocks, sewer hoses, fifth wheels, and so on.

Final Word

Photo by Nubia Navarro (nubikini) from Pexels

Making the move into an RV is a big step, but it can be a wonderful and rewarding experience, as long as you prepare properly and have the right attitude. Keep these tips in mind for a smooth and seamless transition.


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