RV Life Q&A Session: Part 1

20140403-153313.jpgRecently we’ve been getting quite a lot of questions in our inbox from “soon to be RVers”, RV life dreamers and people still a little on the fence about this lifestyle.

Regardless of why you are looking into life on the road, in the beginning most people have at least a little bit of trouble wrapping their head around how to make it all work. In the days leading up to our own launch into life on the road, I well remember scouring the internet looking for all the reassurance I could muster up that it CAN be done and as well as be a life-enriching experience for our whole family!  So when I hear from others that our blog is helping to set their minds at ease by answering so many of their questions about RV life, it reminds me that that is exactly why we are choosing to share our journey with the world!

Yes, there are downsides to RV life on the road. But there are so many upsides too! And to be fair, we love to be honest about both.

And so because it’s getting difficult for me to answer every message individually – I thought I’d take some of the most recent real life questions we’ve gotten in from readers and host part one of a Q&A session in hopes this will help to inform and encourage many other aspiring RVers!

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Q: Do you think there are any challenges that your marriage faces that wouldn’t be the case if you all were living the conventional lifestyle?

A: First of all, this is a really great question. Right off the bat I’ll say that if you don’t already have a reasonably decent relationship with your spouse, it is highly possible that life on the road will likely magnify the weaknesses rather than make them better. I’m sure that not everyone will agree with me here, but personally, I flat out wouldn’t recommend RV life if you already don’t get along. If you can’t get along with your spouse in a larger house, it isn’t likely it is going to be any better in less than 300 sq. feet of space together. However, if you have even at least a fairly healthy marriage, something to build on, it is highly possible for life on the road in a small space to strengthen your relationship even more.  There will inevitably be times you get on each other’s nerves, maybe even needing a break with a little time alone to re-group as individuals – but smaller spaces and the general rhythm of RV life tends to force you together, and time with each other tends to make any marriage/relationship better and stronger. My husband and I already had a pretty great marriage before life on the road, but this has most definitely been the case for my husband and I. But of course, I can’t speak for everyone. I feel it would be extremely helpful to us all to hear other married couple’s experiences on this concern in the comments below!

Q: We really like the Open Range Light series, would you recommend it? Your floor plan seems to be so ideal but one of my biggest concerns is that we want to purchase something that will last for years.

A: So far we are genuinely loving our Open Range Light! (You may tour our very own RV home here! ) It is ideal for our family of four because it has a bunk house (a second bedroom) for the children to sleep and have a little space of their own. Some of the reasons we chose our specific model are:

  • We didn’t necessarily want the kids to have to sleep in the main living area of the RV. We wanted something with their own area and this specific model was the perfect fit for us in that way.
  • It has a fully functional bathroom right off the master bedroom, which we liked.
  • Our camper model can sleep up to 7 people. We loved knowing we would have the extra sleeping space for guests that might come for an overnight stay or two.
  • The kitchen. Loving my kitchen was a HUGE seller! It has plenty of counter and cabinet space and it functions just as a normal kitchen would….just much tinier of course!

Q: We would be more stationary with full time jobs. Do you think it’s cheaper to stay somewhere long term where they include the water and electric or have you found it to be cheaper to pay independently?

A: It is absolutely generally cheaper to stay somewhere where the water/electric is included in the monthly fee. Be sure and inquire about that when contacting a potential campground   Also, some RV campgrounds have a “worker rate” if you are in an area specifically for the purpose of working locally. Ask for it, as it is generally much cheaper per month than the regular rate. 

Q: What is the ballpark range cost per month of an RV campground stay?

A: It is certainly cheaper by the month rather than by day or week. We have found that monthly cost can vary greatly depending on what part of the country you are in and at what time of year. We usually get the “worker rate” because we travel for my husband’s job – so we usually pay anywhere between $400-$500 a month. We try and stay at parks that include water & electric if there’s any way possible. But we’ve also never stayed in places like FL through the winter. That changes things price wise considerably.

If you plan to be in FL and warmer climates during the winter, you can expect to fork out anywhere from $700-$1,110 per month. Yes that is high, but you’re also not having to worry with issues like frozen pipes, high gas bills and freezing cold weather!

Q: With liking your specific Open Range, would you mind sharing the final cost of it?

A: I am positive we could have done it for much cheaper had we gone with the “used” route, but we honestly didn’t have the time to put into restoring something older ourselves, plus we were so new to RV life, we were a little leery of putting our whole family, full time in a used RV that might end up with serious issues later on down the road. So we found what would meet our needs fully and bought ours brand new for $32,000. So for the price of a new car, we bought a home! 

Q: It appears that you guys have some kind of Christian affiliation, I could be wrong. If so disregard, of course.

A: We do not affiliate ourselves with any particular denomination or organization. We are Christians and disciples of Jesus Christ who have firmly chosen to follow and live out the teachings of Christ as stated in Scripture. Several years ago, as a couple we began pulling away from previous heavy affiliation with religious institutions for a more “organic” kind of faith walk. We are certainly not against organized religion and do attend church on occasion. We will always have so much respect for our church years and are so grateful for the foundations of our faith that was built in our years inside the four walls of the church. I believe it is one reason our faith remains so strong and alive even in our decision to shift our focus to “being the church” rather than merely being known for “going to church.”

This is the same kind of deeply rooted, organic, strong faith we teach and encourage in our children. Of course we don’t force it upon them as merely intellectual ideologies, but a faith that lives, moves and breathes. I believe that they and the rest of the world can clearly see our faith in operation in our lives, which is the most important thing to us over any sort of religious affiliation. This is one reason we don’t feel the need to go around announcing, “HEY! WE ARE CHRISTIANS!” or to associate our faith with religious affiliations. The thing is, light never needs to announce it’s presence when it enters a dark room. 

Q: How would you say this lifestyle affects your relationship with God?

A: I would say that it has strengthened our faith as such that we have found that when you remove all the props of your faith, and can no longer rely on being “spoon fed” by a pastor in a pulpit, you either learn to feed yourself fast, or you starve. Basically, you find out what your faith is made of when you pull away from the ease of church/community life as you had known it.

Of course we don’t believe in just keeping to ourselves. It is necessary to seek out the encouragement of other believers who share your faith. That is just as possible in campground life as it is in normal neighborhood life. Also, if you are staying in an area for a while, or anywhere you travel, it is possible to find a church that fits your family. All of this just takes a bit more effort than staying in your comfort zone of course. 

Q: How do you make a living on the road?

A: Some time ago I wrote an entire post answering our most asked question. Click here to find out the answer!

Q: How did you go about getting rid of your stuff before hitting the road?

A: I have also written a post answering this much asked question. Click here!

I genuinely hope you have found this to be a super helpful and informative post. I know I would have in the beginning of our journey! I will be posting part 2 very soon so look for it.

Be sure to connect with us at our FB page (link over to the side of this page) and also sign up to have every post sent straight to your email so you don’t miss a thing! 

Please feel free to comment below any questions or suggestions of your own here. Who knows, I may use your comment/suggestion in Part Two of my next RV Q&A! 

Tiny home, big life!

About Rachel Rowell

A true southern gal at heart, Rachel was raised and lives in the deep south and spends her days raising her own babies, writing, making music, reading out on the front porch, and cooking supper for her family to sit around the table and enjoy together at nights! Her ultimate girlhood dream was to raise a family in a house just like "Anne of Green Gables" and now she is living her dream and inspiring others along the way.

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6 Responses to RV Life Q&A Session: Part 1

  1. Danielle April 3, 2014 at 9:50 pm #

    Very thankful for your response! I am Matt’s girlfriend 🙂

  2. Rachel Rowell April 3, 2014 at 9:52 pm #

    You are so very welcome Danielle! Hope you found it helpful. Feel free to ask away if you think of anything else specific you are wondering. 🙂

  3. Bj April 3, 2014 at 10:08 pm #

    Your answers are perfect! We always joke that the secret to our success is having two TV’s; one for GET’s sports and one for my programs but I really think the secret is liking each other. I also think that anyone who needs a lot of personal space should really think carefully about embarking on the fulltime RVing lifestyle. You have the perfect floor plan for family living—absolutely love it. When our kids were growing up and our RV was for recreational purposes we always chose a bunks floor plan which was perfect. They loved having their own space (and our Irish Setter had a great place where she could stow aboard!)

  4. Kelly Hill May 30, 2014 at 1:51 pm #

    Our family of 5 is in the process of transitioning from the big house suburban life to something much lighter and free. We already ditched the house and are now just trying to figure out what the next step will be… building a tiny house on a farm or traveling the country in an RV. I am IN LOVE with your blog and am so thankful that you are sharing your journey. So much of what you say speaks to where our hearts are right now. THANK YOU for all of your insights & inspiration!

    I think my main concern about RV life is security… Do you feel safe in the RV at campgrounds? Have you had any scary encounters like someone sneaking around your camper at night? I think one night like that would send me speeding back home the next morning.

    Another question is do you ALWAYS park the RV at campgrounds or are there other places to park it? If we choose the RV route, we may spend a few months of the year with family and my guess is that parking a big camper in the driveway or neighborhood street won’t fly. Any thoughts?

  5. Amanda July 4, 2014 at 11:10 pm #

    This might be a silly question but if you live from an RV and constantly travel you do not have a physical address; how do you get around this for things like driver’s license, etc? Also, where/how do you receive mail?

    Thanks!!

  6. Jess Curren July 7, 2014 at 12:26 am #

    Great answers to some often asked questions! Thanks for your thoughts.

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