The Search Begins…
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If you read our blog post from February 2021, “The Story of Us,” you may have picked up on the fact that we sold our house as part of our journey toward full-time RV living.
Now, we have to find an RV!
We knew we would be using our RV for full-time living. But that may not be your situation at all.
No one can tell you what the right RV is for you. Only you can make that determination.
Will you use it for summer camping/travel only, or for year-round travel with a residence you return to between trips?
Will you be stationary in one area or traveling to explore this wonderful world of ours?
Will you use the RV in colder months? (Four-season packages may offer additional insulation, but are still not as well insulated as a “sticks and bricks” residence.)
Where do we start? There are so many options out there!
First, we had to decide what type – towable or motorized? Early in our decision process, we thought we would buy a new pickup truck and a fifth wheel and that would be that. As we thought and pondered and considered, we decided that was not the way we wanted to go, for a variety of reasons.
Don’t be afraid to change your mind!
As you learn about RVs, your desires may change. And that’s okay.
Once you’ve determined your travel plans and RV style, move on to the floor plan.
Find a floor plan (or two or three) that you like and will fit your or your family’s lifestyle. Then imagine living inside the RV from the time you wake up until the time you go to bed. Does it provide what you need, in case you can’t leave the RV? (The recent southern snowstorm comes to mind.)
As you think about floor plans and options, consider the following:
- Non-negotiable – what are your “must-haves?”
Do you do a lot of dirty outdoor activities? Then an outdoor shower or spray port may be a must-have for you.
Are you an off-grid camper? A composting toilet may be among your must-haves.
- Nice to have – what options would make your RVing experience more comfortable?
Are there a lot of folks in your family? An RV with a bath and a half floor plan may make bathroom traffic flow better.
Do you work from the road? Finding a spot for a home office could help make work more enjoyable.
Remember, one person’s non-negotiable is another person’s nice to have. There’s no wrong or right answer, only what is right for you.
Then research manufacturers. Each manufacturer offers something different or unique. Check out online groups and forums. Remember that all RVs are made by people – and people can have good days and not-so-good days.
If you’re close to where the RVs you are interested in are manufactured, call and see if you can take a tour of their facilities. (COVID has changed some of the availability for facility tours.)
Once you’ve found “the one,” have the RV inspected by an NRVIA Certified RV Inspector prior to purchase.
This is our non-negotiable.
Buying from a dealership or an individual.
New or used, because even brand-new RVs can have issues.
An NRVIA Certified RV Inspector can provide you with information about the RV’s systems and condition. This information can be used in negotiation with the seller, as well as helping you prioritize future repairs and maintenance.
Most of all, have fun.
Enjoy this part of the journey. The search for your next RV becomes part of the story you tell.
But what about our search?
Oh, our search has ended. But our story is just beginning. And that’s a tale for another time.