Learning the RV Lifestyle

Quite often when reading comments in blogs I see people saying that they want to learn the RV lifestyle. It seems like such a strange goal, somewhat akin to proclaiming that you want to learn the English lifestyle.

I think the most successful people, at adapting to living in motorhomes or boats. Are those that move into their choosen form of mobile accommodation, without any preconceptions, as to how their accommodation should define what their lifestyle is. It would seem to me that those who desire to learn the RV lifestyle, are trying to find the panacea to the disatisfaction of their current life, not realising that life carries on, no matter what particular lifestyle they choose to emulate.

Having said that, I think there are some basic rules of thumb for living comfortably in any form of mobile accommodation.

1: The more frequently you move, the less physical space is required to be comfortable in your home. If you are stationary for longer periods of time, space requirements increase, to avoid cabin fever.

2: Being self employed, or owning a small business is going to allow for more flexible earning opportunities, in regards to allowing mobility in your lifestyle.

3: Simplify systems; reduce electrical reliance as much as possible (do away with any need for A.C. hookups) Use manual pumps or gravity for water etc..

4: Go as small as is practically possible for your particular situation, and earning methods.

5: Remember that your choosen form of accommodation is just that, accommodation, it’s not your entire life.

Those that expect to be able to adopt a McRV lifestyle should expect to be financially independant before they embark on it, if they don’t want to be disappointed early on. For all others, there are many different ways to approach living successfully in various forms of nomadic housing.

The most eloquent, though by no means short, description of a successful entry into nomadic living I know, is by Glenn Morrissette in his blog To Simplify. It is worth reading from the beginning, to understand why he has been successful.

The reason that I think he has been so successful, is that he wasn’t aiming for the RV lifestyle. Rather he was a self employed person, who was looking to simplify his life. As a basic synopsis, he was living in an apartment in L.A. with a sports car, working as a self employed musician and composer. What he embarked on was a reduction in his personal possessions, with the aim of simplifying to the point that he could reside in a small RV. It is clear through reading the blog that his intention, was not aimed at moving into an RV and hitting the road, rather that was just how things evolved. Upon getting to the point of buying and moving into an RV, Glenn remained in the L.A. area for some time, continuing to work as he had previously done, while living in an apartment. He discovered early on that he could save travel time, by staying in the area of his current work commitments, until they shifted to a different area, where in he shifted to the new location. So he did not need to commute.

On the way back from a cross country road trip to a family gathering, Glenn realised that he was enjoying his new travelling lifestyle, and that with some modifications to his work practice, there was no need to stop. Essentially he did a stock take of his work. Realised that his composing work was not reliant on being anywhere specific, and after cheking with the people he was composing for, discovered they were happy for him to keep producing in the same fashion. He also came to the pragmatic conclusion that it would not be practical for him to maintain his live playing and recording work, so by all appearances stopped seeking that work, though I notice from his blog that Glenn does still do the occasional bit of playing work. Now after less than two years, Glenn is living a fully nomadic RV life.