How To Prepare For Full-Time RV Living: A Detailed Guide

Becoming a full-time RVer is not a decision to be made lightly. You need to do your homework to find out if a life on the road will work for you. Preparing for a full-time RV lifestyle is quite challenging.

But it’s definitely worth trying! So, if you are considering full-time RVing, you need to determine all the essentials to make your RVing lifestyle enjoyable and trouble-free.

Full-time RVing lifestyle isn’t just for the RV experts but for everyone. Even a total beginner can live a nomad lifestyle, but the question is, how to prepare for full-time RV living?

Well, you just need to ensure you plan accordingly. Here are tips to help you get started for full-time RVing. These tips will help you enjoy life on the road in your RV if you are a travel lover.

Schedule date of departure


Before you decide to live full-time in your RV, schedule a date for your departure. While this sounds a tad overzealous, it’s very important.

After all, you don’t really know how many days it will take you to prepare your quest for your full-time lifestyle.

If you don’t have a deadline, you might end up pushing the transition to move from your home and into your RV. Therefore, having a date of departure will make your planning more urgent. 

This is an excellent motivator that will help you turn your RV living into reality.

The time you need to prepare for full-time RVing depends on your lifestyle entirely. For beginners, you should decide if you’d prefer to rent or sell your home.

When you decide that selling your home is the right choice, then you need to find a realtor.

Have a priority list 

List down everything that you will need for your full-time RV living. A simple priority list should include the following items:

  • Cancel utilities
  • Where you plan to camp
  • Decluttering
  • Researching camper
  • Organize home garage sale

A to-do list will vary because campers have unique situations. Therefore, to get started, you need to create a detailed list of what you need as you prepare for full-time RV living.

As you understand what it will take to transition to living in your RV full-time, you can trim your to-do list to make it more detailed.

Try to simplify

A family house on the country side with RV trailer parked in the driveway

You need to declutter your home if you want to make your life stress-free. That means you will have to do away with a few things.

For instance, do you plan to stay in your RV for a few months and then move to another area?

You can store some of your items in storage, and you can retrieve them if you no longer want to live in your RV full-time.

Only store the essential items in the RV to preserve space. Through decluttering, you can do away with anything you don’t need.

However, this process of decluttering may be emotionally intense when you choose to carry only a few items to your RV. It’s very liberating to have a few things for peace of mind.

Outline the necessities

What are some of the essentials you need for full-time RV living? If you want to save on space, just have the basic things you can’t do without.

Don’t be too hard on yourself if you make mistakes when planning for your full-time RVing.


The clothing you need to carry with you on your travel will entirely depend on the place you planned to stay. Most camping enthusiasts are usually weather conscious, and that means they are always prepared for different weather elements.

If you plan to settle in a cold area, you should pack heavy clothes. Ensure you have plenty of jackets and raincoats.

Remember to keep things simple! But if your RV has enough space, then you can carry more clothes with you.

Kitchen tools

What items do you often use when cooking? Find out what items you can live without. Do you have enough space in the camper? Surprisingly, you won’t need most of the things you have in your kitchen.

For example, a blender is not something practical if you don’t plan to install a reliable source of power in the RV. Remember, the camper will constantly shake on the road, and that means you need to protect your glassware.



An RV doesn’t really need too many decorations. It should be as simple and practical as possible! However, you can add a few things like family portraits to make your motorhome extra cozy. You can also use colorful rugs to spice up your living space.

Plant installations can add vibrancy and life to your motorhome and will purify your atmosphere as well. If you plan to hang expensive artwork, remember to hold them securely into position to prevent breakage since the RV will be in motion most of the time.

Get a good-sized RV

While buying a larger RV might feel advantageous, this is far from the truth. A larger RV is not really the best way to go.

For instance, there’s no point in buying a 30-foot RV if you don’t have a lot of items. Find an RV that suits your lifestyle and ensure it can accommodate all your needs.

Choose a paperless lifestyle 

You should transition to a simple paperless lifestyle! Have all your mail forwarded to your online mail service.

As a suggestion, you can sign up for automated billing or e-billing for credit cards, auto insurance, health insurance, and other critical financial requirements.

As you prepare to transition into full time RV living, you should sort your items into 4 main categories.

  • Sell
  • Trash
  • Donate
  • Keep

1. Sell

You should sell all the items you no longer use to save on space in the RV. There are many useful websites where you can sell second-hand items such as Facebook and Craigslist. Alternatively, you can consider a garage sale if you want to sell your stuff quickly.

2. Trash

Take a look around your house, and you will notice a lot of trash in the form of broken items and documents, which often take up a lot of space. Do thorough cleaning and trash all unnecessary items.

3. Donate

Some of the items you didn’t find worth selling should be donated instead. Simply fill one of your bags with stuff you want to give out and drop it at the nearest donation center near you; this will create plenty of space, which will make you feel lighter.

4. Keep

If you decide to keep a few items that you will bring with you on the RV, you can categorize them further into two groups.

What you will use – This will include all the essentials like blankets, clothes, kitchenware, office stuff, etc.

Storage – You can rent a storage unit where you can store some of your items that have sentimental value. When you put your stuff in storage, consider whether you will use them in the future.

Prepare yourself mentally


Living in an RV full-time is not for the faint-hearted. Some people don’t understand what it takes to live comfortably in an RV full time.

Others might be supported and excited that you have taken such a bold step but may not know how to assist you as they haven’t tried anything similar.

Organizing your personal stuff can be emotionally exhausting. Therefore, as you prepare for a full-time RVing, you need to exercise some patience. Connect with other RV enthusiasts for encouragement and inspiration.

Freedom to work remotely from anywhere

The best thing about living in your RV fulltime is that you can work remotely from anywhere. You can consider learning ways to make money online, which will provide you with the freedom to work in the comfort of your RV, provided you have a reliable internet connection.

Update your RVs insurance information

If you decide to live in your RV full-time, it becomes your new home. That means you need to update your insurance information to keep up. Ensure you have the right insurance cover for your RV as stipulated by law.

Find a better way to manage your mail

Even when you choose to live off-grid in your RV, you still need a way of receiving your mail. Try to accumulate all your bills and then pay them online.

Also, find a reliable mail forwarding service that you can depend on to ensure you always receive all your important mail.

Soul searching is key

Transitioning to live in your RV full-time is a significant lifestyle change. You should prepare accordingly for this big change.

Remember that you will have to leave your family and friends, your home, your community, and your possessions. So, you need to get fully prepared, as this is not always easy, but the lifestyle definitely worth it.

The Secrets to becoming a successful full-time RVer

Reading books, magazines, and visiting our websites often to get tips on various RV topics is a good place to start.

Online newsletters are free and cover many topics, from fixing small problems with your rig to working on the road.

Talk to people who are full-time RVers

If you don’t know anyone who’s doing this, visit a campground on a weekday to talk to campers. 

Go armed with plenty of questions, such as costs, what’s good and bad about full-time RVing, and about the RV they have.

If you don’t already have an RV, you’ll need to get one, a move that requires additional homework.

Do you want a motorhome, a 5th wheel, or a travel trailer? Each has benefits and drawbacks. 

Be sure to look at all three during the decision-making process; look at many models of each type.

Check out tow vehicles, too.

Will you work on the road? If you’re already working at home, chances are your business is portable.

Will you do campground hosting to help with expenses? A visit to your accountant for tax advice may be called for.

The IRS now requires private campgrounds to issue 1099s when people work in exchange for campground fees, so you could end up paying state and federal taxes on that free campsite.

Additionally, many states want to tax your entire income, not just what you earned in that state.

Draw up a budget of estimated expenses to see if you can afford it. If you can keep your RV park fees and vehicle expenses close to what housing and vehicle are now, you should be OK.


Planning to live full time in your RV is intense. However, with hard work and dedication, you can certainly do it.

The best thing about full-time RVing is that it gives you the freedom to travel anytime you want. You can be adventurous and explore different sceneries by just driving around.

As mentioned earlier, proper planning is important to make the transition easier. List down all the items you will need for full-time living. Also, think about the source of fuel you intend to use on your RV. 

Do you prefer to use propane or a wood stove? How will you dispose of the waste? Can you comfortably live in the RV full-time? These are some of the considerations you need to make to ensure you transition well into full-time RV living.

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