My 10 Year Full-Time RVing Plan & Budget

After reading so many posts about people who chose to go back, earlier than planned, to a ‘brick & mortar’ home after Full-time RVing, I was able to group the biggest reasons into 3 categories:

  1. Inability to adapt
  2. Major life change
  3. Financial miscalculation

Inability to adapt –

There are several factors that fall under the category Inability To Adapt.

Not everyone is 100% into it

  • One partner pushes the other into it (convinced that if they tried it they would love it)
  • One partner acquiesces even though they don’t want to go full-time RVing. (Because they want to make their partner happy)

Finding out that Full-time RVing does not equal non-stop vacation

  • Life happens no matter where you are (thank you Wheelingit)
    • You will get sick
    • Things will break and need to be fixed
    • Medical Emergencies
    • You will make mistakes and do stupid things

RVs are smaller than you realize

  • You will be living in very close quarters
    • You will be spending 24-hours a day in each others space
  • You will have less stuff
  • You will have to keep the stuff you have in it’s designated place

Budget and Money Still Matter

  • If you were bad at budgeting before you hit the road, you will probably be bad at budgeting after
  • If you your income is changing, make sure you are ready. Especially if you are changing from steady paycheck to a variable or non-steady income stream.
  • Unexpected expenses still come up

Finding it difficult to embrace the mobile lifestyle

  • No longer live around the corner from your favorite joint
  • Neighbors continuously changing
  • Some days you wake up and wonder where you are

As far as the inability to adapt to full-time RVing, I have a baby step plan which will give Greg and I time to finding out if my family can adapt to such a change. Instead of a big severe change, we will be adjusting a little at a time over the course of the next 3 and a half years. Today we spend every other weekend in an RV in Indiana. 

Major Life Change –

Greg and I are not anticipating any major life changes, but then again these are not typically something you can foresee or plan for. 

Financial Miscalculation –

money-budgetThe 3rd reason, like the 1st, is easily overcome with planning and practice. Many fulltime RV bloggers have been kind enough to post their budgets and expenses during their time on the road. Here are some that I found very helpful:

First of all, I want to say thank you to the many fulltime RV bloggers have been kind enough to post their budgets and expenses during their time on the road. Here are some that I found very helpful:

Experts seem to agree that the average full-time RVing seems to range between $1500 (very frugal) – $5000 (living comfortably) a month. I am sure that many can live well below $1500 and others can go way over $5000. I am truly taking averages. Greg and I are very much middle class/working class suburban Americans. We enjoy a dual income that we have been able to finish raising my three boys and his two boys on. He owns his own business, and I enjoy and office job that allows me to work from home a day or two a week. We see our favorite movies in theaters (every month or so). We eat out or take out at least once a week. I love to cook! I can be frugal, but on good weeks I like to splurge on steaks, seafood, or exotic vegetables. We enjoy unlimited data and I require a good internet connection in order to work from home.

Knowing this I feel confident that we fall into the upper middle portion of that range…approx $3500.

Greg’s roof washing business will require him to have a vehicle where he can easily access and store his tools. Since his business can be early mornings or late into the evening, we will probably have a 2nd vehicle for me to use.

Knowing this I can safely assume that we will need a truck with a custom toolbox, the monthly payment of which will be around $900 a month.

As a business analyst, my job requires a quiet office space with laptop and at least one additional monitor along with continuous access to the internet. We currently have an RV that we stay in every other weekend, it is the perfect size for weekends, but for everyday we know we will need more room. Greg will want a place to sit a relax after a hard days work, and I will need a space that I can comfortably spend 40 hours a week on a computer.

We have been researching layouts and know that a travel trailer that meets our needs, that is gently used will cost approx $25,000 with an average monthly payment of about $500-$600.

This will add up to about $5000 a month budget for a comfortable Full-time RV lifestyle.

So in true analyst fashion, I did a complete breakdown of fixed expenses and variable expenses against our expected income on the road. I exaggerated our grocery budget, our entertainment budget, and budgeted parking every night. Not only will we be able to financially handle being full-time RVer’s but we will actually be able to start saving for our retirement.







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