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If you have dreams of traveling the country, you’ve probably considered the best way to do it! Why not RV? RVing offers flexibility and mobility that beats any other way of living. But can you live in an RV park? Let’s find out.
Can You Live in an RV Park?
You sure can live in an RV park! According to a 2018 article in the Washington Post, 1 million Americans live in their RVs! If we had to bet, we’d guess that number has increased in the last several years as well. Especially with the explosion of remote work!
Although some of these folks probably frequently boondock (or live off-grid), many live in RV parks. There are a few different ways to go about RV park living. Keep reading to learn which one might be the right fit for you!
What Is a Long-Term RV Park?
Can you live in an RV park long-term? Or do you have to move around every few days or weeks? Well, it all depends on the park. Not all RV parks allow long-term rentals. The ones that do are pretty similar.
A long-term RV park offers weekly, monthly, or sometimes even seasonal rates. These rates, when broken down, provide significant price savings over nightly rates. The longer you stay, the larger the cost-savings, in most cases.
There is a catch, though. Many long-term RV parks meter electricity for monthly or longer stays. Nightly and weekly rates usually include electricity in the cost of the stay. Despite having to pay for electricity, you’ll usually still save a lot when staying long-term.
RV parks in highly desirable tourist areas rarely allow long-term stays. Sometimes in these locations, you can stay two weeks and return after spending at least one night away. It seems a little strange, but it is what it is!
What Is Stationary RV Living?
Some people live in an RV park without moving around, which is called stationary RV living. This is common in many areas where homeownership is less affordable.
It can be like living in a mobile home park. Many RV parks that offer long-term stays have a mix of stationary and on-the-move residents.
We’ve also seen it during disasters. For example, in many parts of California, fires often displace residents, and they move to RV parks. Stationary RV living can also be an excellent choice when building (or re-building) a home. That way, as soon as your home is ready, you can move out without having to worry about a lease.
How Much Does It Cost to Live in an RV Park?
There’s a vast price range for monthly RV park rent. The cost of living in an area affects both mortgage/rent prices and RV park prices. We’ve stayed at RV parks for under $400 a month. In the California Bay Area, you could see prices skyrocket to over $2,000 a month, though.
If cost is a factor, we recommend planning your trips to stay at more affordable parks. You can take weekend trips to popular tourist destinations, which will save you thousands of dollars while staying in these locations.
Is Living in an RV and RV Park Cheaper Than a House or Apartment?
You might be wondering, can you live in an RV park if you want to save money? It can be cheaper than living in a house or apartment. Remember, there are more than just the RV park fees to consider, though.
Saving money could depend on your RV’s cost. If you have a high monthly payment, you might break even compared to an apartment. If you buy a more affordable RV, you’re more likely to save money.
Also, consider RV insurance cost, which is often higher for full-time RVers, even stationary ones.
The cost to live in an RV full time depends on how often and how far you move. Slow traveling saves money (lower rates for longer stays). If you travel in a smaller geographic area, you’ll also save gas money.
We’ve taken our fair share of cross-country drives in the RV. The gas bill was not pretty, to be sure!
Is It Safe to Live in an RV Park?
In our experience, we’ve never had safety concerns living in an RV park. Can you live in an RV park in a dumpy part of town and have problems? Sure. But you could have the same issues living in a shady area in a house or apartment.
To increase your safety, read reviews before staying at an RV park. Other simple tips include locking your RV, storing valuables inside, and being aware of your surroundings.
Benefits of Living in an RV Park
Now that you know you can live in an RV park, but why would you want to? You might be surprised to learn there are many benefits to love it! Here are some reasons we think are pretty great!
It Can Be Cheaper Than a House or Apartment
If you play your cards right, you can save a lot living in an RV. This can be especially true in areas with extremely high housing costs. And if you travel to different RV parks, you can strategically choose lower cost-of-living sites.
When you live in an RV, you’re never stuck somewhere. If the rent doesn’t fit your expectations, you can always move somewhere else. Once you pay off your RV, you’ll save even more!
Many Campgrounds Have Amenities You Can Use
Does having a pool, hot tub, gym, and more sound great to you? You can get all that and more when you live in an RV! All without having to do any of the maintenance.
Many RV parks offer amenities to their short and long-term guests. Living in an RV might mean a smaller space. But the added amenities mean you’ll never feel cooped up.
Ability to Travel to Different Campgrounds Every Month, Few Months, or Years
Being stuck in one place is a real drag. Take it from someone who’s been there. After the freedom of RVing, we can’t imagine being tied to one area indefinitely.
Living in an RV makes moving more often much less complicated. Sick of the neighbors? You can move! Bored with doing the same activities every week? Again, nothing is stopping you from hitting the road. No lease to break, no house to sell. Just you and the open road.
You’ll get to explore places many only dream about. Since moving into an RV, our lives have basically felt like a vacation. It doesn’t get much better than that!
But if you start to feel restless, you always have the option of staying somewhere longer. RVing is about the freedom to live how and where you want.
Pro Tip: Are you sure the RV lifestyle is for you? Read 5 Worst Things About Full-Time RV Living to see if you can handle the worst!
Focus on Experiences Rather Than Material Items
When you live in an RV, you don’t have a lot of space for stuff (i.e., junk!). When we transitioned from a house to an RV, we sold or gave away almost everything. In doing so, we came across a few boxes we hadn’t touched since our last move.
Looking back now, we can’t believe how easy it was to get sucked into consumerism. RVing changes that.
You get to focus on living the life of your dreams. RVing helps you collect memories instead of things. Nothing could be more freeing.
So can you live in an RV park? Yes! If you’re into the RV life, we highly recommend giving it a try. Becoming full-time RVers has been the best decision we’ve ever made. And it can be the best decision for you too!