Planning Phase ~ To Live on the Road
So, you have decided you want to live full-time on the road? There are a lot of steps you need to take to get to that point. My husband and I started planning about a year and a half before we pulled the trigger. At the time, we lived in a 3000 sq ft home in Colorado, just the two of us and our two dogs. We thought being on the road for two to three years would be all we could tolerate, so as we moved forward, we had in mind that we would be buying another home in a few years after traveling the US. That did impact how we moved forward.
One of the first things you need to do is decide when you will hit the road. In other words, how much time do you have? Do you have six months? Do you have a year? The amount of time you have will allow you less stress and a little more time to think things through.
1. Selling everything vs. Putting things in storage: Remember when I told you that we thought we’d be buying a home in two to three years? That’s why we sold some of our things. However, we did put some of our furniture and bedroom sets in storage. We went ahead and hired a moving company to come in and pack our stuff and load our POD for us. We wanted to make sure everything we were storing was nicely packed, boxes were stacked safely, and minimal risk of things breaking or being damaged. As part of this process, you need to sort through your stuff and decide what you will take in your RIG and what will either go to storage or be sold. So, keeping all of this in mind, think ahead; it will impact how you move forward.
2. What kind of RIG do you want to live in full-time? Do you want to live in a Motorhome? Do you want to live in a 5th Wheel? A trailer? What about a campervan? You do have so many choices. Remember, the option is up to you, what suits your lifestyle. How I can help you with this is, look for RV Shows in your area. Visit as many of these as you can. Go inside all of them and walk around, open cupboards, and step inside the bathroom. Then close your eyes and can you imagine yourself living here? If you plan to live in your rig with kids, you have a lot more to consider. Sleeping space, storage, closet space, living space, eating area, the list goes on. Another option is to rent an RV for the weekend, see if you even like it before you make the jump. You must decide what you are looking for and what you can sacrifice to enjoy your new life on the road.
3. Will you be working from the road vs. Retiring? If you are working on the road, you need to look for good Wi-Fi and your options. You need to be looking into good cell service and the one that is the most reliable. My husband and I have different cell phone plans, he has AT&T, and I have Verizon. I will tell you there have been times where we are thankful we have other cell phone plans as some places did not have good service for AT&T, so we fell back on my phone, and vice versa.
4. Setting up mail service/Domicile: Now that you are on the road full-time, what state will you be using as your home base? Where will you tell everyone to mail their Christmas Cards? Haven’t you thought of that? Well, this is an essential step of full-time living. My husband and I have chosen South Dakota as our Domicile, some choose Texas, and some choose Florida. It is a personal preference, do a little research Check here to find out more.
To learn more about getting your mail on the road
5. Health Care Plans and Prescriptions: If you are working and your employer carries your Medical Coverage, you want to investigate it and understand how it works. Will you be covered in every state? How will you get your prescriptions? How will you set up doctor appts? What if you have an emergency on the road? How will you take care of that? These are all things that you want to discuss with your insurance carrier and doctor before leaving. Don’t wait until you are on the road, and you have an emergency.
6. Do you have Pets? The same goes for them with their health care. Set up an appointment with your Vet and talk to them about getting updated vaccines and a list of updated vaccines to carry with you. Also, talk to your Vet about getting care on the road. Does your pet have prescriptions that need to be refilled? How are you going to handle that while living in an RV?
7. Set up a budget: This step is not a necessity. However, it does help while being on the road. It allows you to understand what to expect when starting out. I will talk about this more in another blog post.
So you have gotten your house on the market, you have purchased your new RV, and you are ready to start sending your belongings to storage and selling the rest. It’s beginning to look real now, wow! A lot is swirling around in your head. You are asking yourself, “What have I forgot?” It would help if you started planning for the adventure 6-months out. Securing campgrounds is not as easy as it looks. Depending upon the size of your rig and how many nights you want to stay, you need to be thinking forward. The APP that we use to help us plan our trips is RV Trip Wizard. It allows us to plan, search for campgrounds on our route, read the reviews and go directly to the website to book our reservations.
This should give you a lot to think about going forward. Remember that everyone will go about this process differently, so know you must do what works best for you and your family. I hope this helps to get you started. Please feel free to drop me a message below if you have any questions or comments.