10 Misconceptions About Living Full-Time in an RV – Debunked!

0 shares Although full-time living in an RV was once looked down upon by the general public, it’s now more popular than ever. Whether it’s…

Although full-time living in an RV was once looked down upon by the general public, it’s now more popular than ever. Whether it’s because of inflation, high housing costs, or simply a desire to not be held down by rent or a mortgage, more and more people are choosing the RV life.

If you’re one of these many people considering the RV lifestyle, it’s important that you know the facts before you dive in. There are many misconceptions surrounding RV living, some of them playing up the glamours and others the downsides. We’re going to set the record straight!

1. There Isn’t Enough Space

Photo Credit: @mountaintimephotography

There’s no doubt that RVs have far less living, storage, and overall space than an average house or apartment. Even a tiny studio apartment is typically 500+ square feet, whereas even the largest RVs max out at around 400 square feet of living space.

While you’ll certainly have less space living in an RV, that doesn’t mean you won’t have enough space. Although it might take some getting used to, you’ll soon learn how to maximize the space at your disposal and make the most of it.

2. I’ll Have to Get Rid of Things I Can’t Live Without

Photo Credit: Deposit Photos

The second aspect of maximizing your living space is figuring out what you can do without. The average American has way more clothing, furniture, accessories, toys, and tools than they need to get by. We also live in a “fast-fashion” culture where most of the items we own, primarily clothing, are only meant to last for a season.

Rather than looking at the full-time RV lifestyle as a curse because of all the things you’ll need to get rid of, look at it as a blessing and a chance to get your priorities straight. Since you’ll only have room for the essentials, you can get rid of everything else and declutter. You’ll be amazed at how good it feels to empty your closet and rid yourself of excess items you rarely use (if ever.) 

3. I’ll Get Lonely on the Road

Photo Credit: Deposit Photos

If you live in an RV away from home, you will spend a large chunk of your time away from friends and family. However, RV parks are full of people just like you who enjoy the freedom of being a full-time RVer but also enjoy being part of a social community. As such, we’ve never lived at a campground where we didn’t find people to hang out with.

In fact, there’s a good chance you’ll meet some of your best friends at RV parks and while boondocking. The RV community is like a big family, and people often look out for one another.

4. Full-Time RVing is Like a Full-Time Vacation

Photo Credit: Deposit Photos

One of the more glamorous myths about full-time RVing is that you’re essentially on a full-time vacation. Not true! Unless you’re retired or actually on an extended vacation, the RV life is just like any other way of living. It’s full of ups and downs, and you’ll need to conquer plenty of challenges.

Additionally, most full-time RVers also work full-time–they’re just doing it in an RV. For instance, my wife is a traveling physical therapist, and I do full-time freelance writing. Just because we live in a travel trailer and travel the country doesn’t mean we’re living a full-time adventure or on a never-ending vacation.

5. Living in an RV is Cheaper Than Renting or Buying a House

Photo Credit: Deposit Photos

Another misconception is that it’s easier to save money when you live in an RV than in a house or apartment. However, between everyday living expenses, campground fees, gas money, costly repairs and maintenance costs, and other normal bills that don’t simply disappear, your savings may not be as substantial as you thought they would be.

Many full-time RVers also make monthly payments on their RV if they can’t afford to pay it off right away. Additionally, the average RV park charges upwards of $1,000 to $2,000 per month for rent! We’ve paid as little as $600 per month and as much as $1,500, and we typically look for the most affordable option available.

6. I Won’t Be Able to Get Mail and Packages

woman standing next to a package received on the road
Photo Credit: The Wayward Home

Because of how popular the full-time RV life has become, getting mail and packages is rarely an issue. Most campgrounds let you receive mail and packages at the campground, and if they don’t, you can set up a P.O. box at the nearest post office.

7. Life on the Road is Easy

Photo Credit: Deposit Photos

In the same way that full-time RVing isn’t a full-time vacation, it also isn’t always easy. From tire blowouts to trouble finding a suitable campground to long travel days to crappy campground internet, the RV life has just as many challenges as stationary life. Some of them are different, but they’re no less annoying.

8. Once You Start, There’s No Going Back

Photo Credit: Deposit Photos

Just because you take the plunge and start living in an RV doesn’t mean you’ll have to live in one forever. If you decide that the RV life isn’t for you, you can sell your rig and go back to living in a house or apartment. The used RV market is hotter than ever, so you shouldn’t have any trouble finding a buyer.

9. I Can’t Live in an RV During Winter

Photo Credit: Deposit Photos

In years past, it’s true that RVs weren’t designed to handle winter weather. However, there are plenty of newer RVs that are designed to withstand freezing temperatures. These rigs have extra insulation in the walls and ceiling, as well as thicker insulation in the underbody to protect your waterlines. Additionally, winter-edition RVs have powerful furnaces to ensure you and your loved ones stay warm and safe.

10. I Can’t Afford an RV Suitable for Full-Time Living

Dodge Ram Promaster RV Rental parked in a forested campsite by a picnic table
Photo Credit: Outdoorsy

This is perhaps the most common myth about full-time RVing. While some RVs, such as class-A motorhomes, luxury fifth-wheels, and massive toy haulers, can cost as much as a house, there are plenty of affordable and livable RVs out there. Your best bet is to look for a travel trailer, a class B camper van, or a used RV that fits your budget. 

Author: Jalin Coblentz


Jalin Coblentz has spent the past three years living full-time in an RV with his wife and their Goldendoodle, Harper. They have traveled and lived in more than a half-dozen different states, including New Hampshire, Ohio, Maine, Michigan, Florida, Montana, Colorado, and Utah, living life one campground at a time. When he's not hiking, golfing, or walking the dog, Jalin enjoys writing about the ups and downs of RVing and helping others who are interested in pursuing a similar path.

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