Quitting RV Life Is Harder Than Ever

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An RV on the road

Over the last several years, we’ve seen large numbers of individuals and families embracing RV life. Many see the adventures of others and want to experience them for themselves.

However, trends typically swing back and forth like the pendulum on a grandfather clock, and it’s only a matter of time before RV life isn’t trendy. Unfortunately, many who are throwing in the towel find quitting RV life harder than jumping into it.

Today, we’re sharing some trends in the RV community and why quitting RV life is harder than ever. Let’s dive in!

What Is RV Life?

RV life is a lifestyle choice that involves living full-time in an RV. Some who enjoy the lifestyle will park their rigs in one location and never move them. However, some are constantly on the move.

These nomads pack up their things and move from one spot to the next, typically traveling with the seasons to enjoy nice weather year-round.

Many modern RVs have all the conveniences necessary to live comfortably in them. While living in an RV once carried a somewhat negative connotation, you can leave luxuriously in many rigs these days.

Is the RV Life Trend Ending?

If you’ve tried to book campsites lately, you’ve likely discovered that RV life is alive and well.

The popular Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta recently sold out its RV sites in only 70 minutes and had a record amount of traffic. However, the fiesta selling out is nothing new, as it’s been doing it for years.

However, what isn’t normal, is that many campgrounds are not only experiencing increased numbers of guests, but the guests are staying longer. Campgrounds that were typically only filling up on the weekends are now filling up for the entire camping season.

Some of the largest names in RVing are throwing in the towel or no longer traveling full-time.

As a result, many feel that the RV life trend is ending, but campsite reservations and availability tell an entirely different story. Every day we’re seeing more individuals joining large RV life groups online and hitting the road.

Why Are People Quitting RV Life?

When RVers throw in the towel, it typically results from one of several reasons. Let’s take a look at why people are quitting RV life.

Crowded Campgrounds

As we’ve said, campgrounds are insanely crowded. The last thing an RVer wants is to jam their RV between two others and have minimal space to enjoy. In addition, finding a campsite is next to impossible in some areas.

RV manufacturers may have been able to ramp up production, but campgrounds couldn’t expand their facilities at the same rate. The result is a shortage of campsites, especially in prime locations.

It’s the simple concept of supply and demand, meaning RVers are paying a premium price for campsites.

Overview of an RV park

Less Free Camping

Many who jump into RV life quickly get tired of crowded campgrounds and opt to find free camping options.

However, we’ve seen a massive increase in free camping spots getting shut down in recent years. Not everyone enjoying RV life respects the land, which makes it more difficult for those who do.

Some of the best free camping spots have become day-use-only locations. This means staying the night or multiple nights is no longer possible.

In addition, many local communities are cracking down on free camping, making it more difficult to enjoy overnight parking spots like Walmart and other business parking lots.

Increased Fuel Costs

If you’ve filled up on fuel in the last year or so, you’ve likely noticed the increase at the pump.

Fuel prices tend to go up and down more than the roller coasters at Universal Studios and vary geographically. However, the increased fuel prices have caused severe strains on many budgets, including RVers.

Whether using a towable or driveable RV, you will likely use a generous amount of fuel driving from point A to point B. Pulling through the fuel pump can be a painful experience. As a result, many simply can no longer afford the lifestyle due to the increased fuel cost.

Pro Tip: It’s no secret that gas has been pricey lately. Here’s Where you Can You Find the Lowest Gas Prices in USA

A gas price sign

Camping Gear Is More Expensive

Inflation is making it difficult for many to enjoy the RV life. In a previous article, we talked about the rising prices for some of the basic gear we purchased when hitting the road.

Every penny you spend on gear and supplies is less money you have to spend on your adventures.

For many, it’s the perfect storm causing them to end or adjust their RV life. When you combine the frustrations of getting campsites and paying more, it’s a wonder why many RVers make it as long as they do.

While it’s a rewarding lifestyle, many quickly realize that RV life isn’t always how it appears on YouTube and Instagram.

Close up of camping gear

Why Quitting RV Life Is Harder Now 

If you feel that you’re reaching the end of the road for your adventures, there are a few things you need to know.

Quitting RV life now isn’t easy, and it may be difficult to transition out of the lifestyle. Let’s look at a handful of things you need to consider.

Increased Home Prices

If you haven’t heard, home prices have increased dramatically in recent years. Property values have nearly doubled in some parts of the country. For those who have spent a few years on the road, you’re in for a surprise when you start shopping.

In addition, interest rates are through the roof, meaning you will pay more each month.

When you combine the fact that both home prices and mortgage rates are up considerably, you may not be able to transition back into a house from your RV immediately. You may have to use a rental for a year or so to help with the transition.

Rentals Aren’t Cheap

Unfortunately, home prices aren’t the only ones rising. Demand for quality rentals has risen in many locations too. Rent in some areas is insane and can be extremely hard to come by.

If you’re looking to live in a specific area, you may have to pay more for a home or apartment you’re not necessarily thrilled about.

Renting can be frustrating because you’re not building equity. You’ll never see a penny of that money again since you’ll never own the property. In addition, you aren’t free to renovate or make modifications to fit your needs.

RV Prices Are Dropping

While there was a time when RV prices were skyrocketing, especially with used RVs, that’s no longer the case.

At one point, there was a great demand for RVs, used or new. However, manufacturers have been able to keep up with demand, which means more RVs are available for shoppers.

Used RVs are less valuable since buyers can purchase new rigs. Those who overpaid for their rigs are finding themself underwater on their loans, which means they owe more than they’re worth.

If that’s you, you may need to write a check to the bank for the difference, which could be several thousand dollars.

Keep in Mind: Looking to sell your RV? We Sold Our RV in Under 30 Days: Here’s How

Multiple RVs for sale

Demand for RVs Appears Is Cooling

The RV Industry Association regularly releases stats regarding the status of RV shipments from manufacturers.

Their latest reports indicate that nearly every type of RV, except for truck campers, is experiencing a cooling in demand. Total shipments for November 2022 fell 50.4% compared to November 2021.

The cooling demand for RVs can throw a wrench in the plans for RV manufacturers and dealerships.

This is mainly because RVs have practically sold themselves in the past couple of years. They didn’t need to worry nearly as much about pricing or customer service. We could see massive price drops for some RVs, making selling a used RV more challenging.

Hold Out On Quitting RV Life a Little Longer

We encourage you to wait a little longer if you’re considering quitting RV life. Doing so now may be more challenging than you might think and present some potential issues.

You need a clear plan to make the transition as smooth as possible. However, it’s nearly impossible to plan for every potential situation, making the entire process extremely stressful.

If you’re in a funk, go on an adventure and reflect on why you hit the road in the first place. It might be an opportunity for you to fall back in love with RV life and keep you going. If not, it might be the clear message that it’s time to throw in the towel.

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