The cost of living full time in an RV

We have been living in our RV for ONE month now! I have been writing down all our expenses as we go in my notebook and I am thrilled to share this with you guys! This amount just gives our family (and yours) an idea of what our expenses will be living this lifestyle. We know this will look different for you, depending on your personal style and income. For our first month on the road, we drove a lot of miles which made the cost for our RV gas be on the higher side. This 2nd month we are in, we are staying stationary with our RV due to our agenda for the next few weeks. Therefore our RV gas cost will be much lower, if any cost for month TWO. Our travels will vary each month, each week and sometimes maybe each day and all that will play into what our future monthly budgets will look like.

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There are many expenses that are our CHOICE in whether it keeps our family having a low and affordable budget or not. We could choose to eat out a lot and create a high amount and we could choose to pay a ton of money for family activities. Not saying that it is bad to do so, but for us we can not do those things on a regular basis. We try to limit our eating our expenses due to how quickly those bills can add up (1x a week is our goal). I also try to research and find free activities to do in the current area we are in. (Once you start researching ,you will usually be surprised at all the FREE things to do as a family!) Plus we love just being able to go outside and hike, play, ride bikes and explore! (<—–FREE) If we have a month where my husband makes extra money or we have saved on an certain expense, leaving us money to splurge on an activity, we will!

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I know our life on the road may look completely different than another family’s life. We are choosing to live a SIMPLE life, therefore we are trying to keep all our bills and expenses on the lower side. We want to live a life that can be easily attainable for others. Part of our excitement in sharing our story is about letting others know you do not have to have a lot of money to live this life. You just have to be wise with your money, live below your means and be content with having less.  We feel like we are living the real AMERICAN DREAM. We have zero debt. We have freedom to live and breath again. We have an abundance of time as a family. We live to work not work to live.

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Life as it was, was literally sucking the life out of my husband, out our marriage and our children. Through a whole lot of prayer and nightly talks, we decided it was time to exit the silly rat race of life. It was time for our family to live like we never have before. Living on far less money and working fewer jobs. We are learning alongside our children the difference between a want and a need. My husband and I are teaching our children how to be wise with money, how to save and how to live a simple life. We are teaching our children that you do not have to be like the rest of America, always wanting more money and more things to be happy. That lifestyle in the end, is what ruins families and creates stressed, depressed and hurting people. We are hoping that teaching them this way of living, saves them from a lot of stress and heartaches later in life. We want our children to cherish relationships over things.

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This amazing RV life, living SIMPLY, is what the American Dream should be. It should bring such relief to know that ANYONE can live this dream. If we can do it as a family of 8, anyone can! We have been asked by people if we won lottery to be able to do this. We always laugh and say no way, but we sure do FEEL like we did every morning we wake up 🙂

I have listed only the expenses that are related to travel and RVing first.

February 11-March 10

1999 Fleetwood Southwind $18,000 which we paid in cash

Total Miles driven                  2,439

Average MPG                           7.7 MPG

Average price for gas              $1.53

Cost for RV gas                        $518

Cost for tow vehicle gas         $82.00

Propane                                     $129.19

Laundromats                            $58.00

RV Maintenance expenses     $85.00   (unexpected repairs)

Cell phone bills                          $70.00

RV/Car Insurance                     $112.00

Campground Expenses             $39.00

Total RVing and travel       $1,093.00

Personal life expenses

Groceries                                      $485.00 (We have learned how to shop and keep a low grocery bill even with 8 people!)

Life Insurance                             $86.00

Healthcare                                   $60.00 (My husband and I choose to not have health insurance, we pay into a program for our children)

Eating out/takeout                    $162.00

Activities                                      $0.00

Shopping                                      $55.00

Savings                                         We put aside money every month

Tithe                                             We tithe at least 10% of our income each month

Fay family expenses           $848.00            

Total month expenses       $1,941.00 (RV and travel expenses plus our personal life expenses)

We understand that some families want to be able to spend money on activities because it may be part of your families adventure and that is okay! You just have to come up with your own budget and what works best for your family. Some families prefer staying at campgrounds, therefore having a higher expense of campground fees will be a normal part of your budget. The best thing you can do is sit down and write everything out on paper. This will give you a good look at each row of what things are going to cost your family each month. Then look at each row again and decide if you can eliminate or cut back on any expenses. You just need to be creative and resourceful! Try to think of the bare minimal your family can live with and still be comfortable. Remember living a SIMPLE life is about letting go of all the stuff you have been holding on to and living with less. Trust me you do not need all the things you think you do! Sometimes it takes living a month on the road to see in black and white what the costs will be. This actually helped us to do well because I knew I was writing everything down to tally up! I wish I would have been writing down all my spending way before this because I think it really helps keep the budget in check.

I want to always make myself available to talk with you and your family about this crazy/fun RV life. Please message me if you have any questions about anything. Our family is here to help your family. Whether it be in taking the leap to sell everything and buying an RV, to living a simple life, reconnecting as a family, being a mom to a herd of children, setting up solar or your home, homeschooling or whatever you want to talk about.  Life is so much easier when we can be there and help one another. We look forward to connecting with even more families on the road! Thank you already for all the kindness and love you have shown our family thus far through emails, phone calls, play dates and invites to your home. We truly appreciate it.

SOLAR PANELS

Since my amazing husband put solar panels on our RV, we do not have to pay to stay at campgrounds. This saves us a ton of money!! If you are planning to live and travel in an RV long term, we highly suggest investing in solar panels. Not only does it cut down your monthly budget, it also gives you freedom to travel and stay anywhere your heart desires! I have attached  a link that explains how we set up our our system.

http://www.simplelifefullhearts.com/category/solar-power-living-off-the-grid/

Our solar powered RV!
Our solar powered RV!

 

 

 

 

 

11 thoughts on “The cost of living full time in an RV

  1. Is your husband having any trouble finding work while traveling ? Really interested in your travels. Angie berry and her family are really close to ours in Ky . well thanks for update and good luck.

  2. We are living 3 doors down from you at this moment and we did the same as you sold home and furniture to start a new life we love it we are almost at a year now and we all can’t be happier. Good luck

  3. Do you actually find places to park that are free? I just bought an RV and it seems like it would be hard to find free places to park.

  4. Hi I’m so interested in your tours. I’ve been following your blog since you started on the road. It sounds so exciting We couldn’t do anything like that where we live as we are on on island of 65,000 people and twenty square miles round. We would be driving in a circle. We are in Guernsey in the Channel Islands. Have s look on line and see our tiny island. That’s why I have been reading your emails. It’s a different world. Ally x

  5. Please explain how you deal with water…showers, toilets, etc. intake and release! Also sewage. Are you always totally solar?

  6. I am fascinated by this life! We have 10 children (7 currently living at home) and live on a really tight budget. I have joint custody of my oldest kids so our lives aren’t really our own for the next 5 years but I’d love to hit the road full time in 5 years and travel some in the meantime if God will make a way. Looking forward to reading your responses to the comments here and more blog entries.

  7. We chose this lifestyle for a lot of the same reasons you guys did. We do have debt and that is one of the reasons to choose this lifestyle. We want to get rid of our debt and then travel and do ministry on the road. We have got to do a little of this stationary but know there is so much more out there. I am curious how you do such a tight budget in groceries? We have 6 in our family and our budget is so much higher. Almost doubled from yours.

  8. My wife and I are both older and disabled. We bought an old 1986 Gulfstream Sunsport that I am presently working on. Kind of hard to find parts for something this old, but I won’t give up. My wife’s time is limited, so I plan to try and show her everything this beautiful country has to offer. Once I am sure the RV is road dependable, we will put our home up for sale and head out. I can’t wait to read all your future post, as it may be a while before we finally do get to leave. We don’t have children like you do to have to worry about providing for…..no wait a minute. We DO have children!!! We have 2 German Rottweilers that are my babies!!!! This I am sure will kind of hinder our camping options, but I plan to boondock most of the time anyway. If you guys make it down the East coast of Florida, let me know!! Thanks for your time, Wade & Tennessee Frazier.

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