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Old 09-17-2015, 12:57 PM   #1
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Red face Best Model For Full Time Living

Can anyone advise on the best full time living trailer on a budget? We are reducing costs so we can eventually build a house. I've seen a 1993 with laundry that was 36'. I think something a bit smaller would be better. Are there any smaller ones with laundry and a tub? We've found a great place to land it once we have the right one. Or, could anyone point me to a spreadsheet or retailer who gives good advice? Thanks so much!!!
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Old 09-17-2015, 01:05 PM   #2
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Personally I do not think an Airstream is what you need. Sounds like you are looking more for a park model. Airstreams are not really designed for long term sit in one place habitation.
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Old 09-23-2015, 04:42 PM   #3
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Welcome, blubelle. Michael may have it right, or maybe we are missing some information. Could you share a bit more about what you plan to do? Do you already have the land picked out and plans drawn (at least in your head) or will you go traveling around to find your ideal spot? Will you build your house yourself, or will you have a contractor build it for you? You mentioned that you have found a place to land your coach, which would imply that you will be building in that area.

We're fulltimers in a 40' motor home with no slides. We're fine with this space, but some days it would be nice to have a bit more. We've talked about a 34' Airstream, but that would give us slightly less living space than what we now have and a LOT less storage space. We don't have a washer/dryer, but the hookups are there should we want them.

How long do you intend to be in your coach? What sort of climate will you encounter during that time? Airstreams aren't great in extreme temperatures. What sort of budget are you looking at? Airstreams are more expensive than a similar size and age SOB, but they hold their value better.

If you are looking at a fairly short time frame, say a year or two, you could buy a pretty nice Airstream for $40,000 and sell it in a year or two for pretty close to what you paid for it. If you buy SOB (some other brand) you will lose maybe 10-20% in that same time frame. A used DRV 5'er will have better insulation and larger tanks, but requires at least an F350-class truck to safely tow it.
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Old 09-24-2015, 05:48 PM   #4
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Hi David,
We found the lot and then we decided against it so we cancelled escrow.
We just bought a 35' park model with about 320 sq. ft. of floor space. The slides make such a big difference and we can use our own furniture as there are no built-ins. It's pretty cute, but not as kitchy and fun as an Airstream would have been. I looked and decided on less expensive floor space since this could take a while.

It is getting delivered to an RV Park near where we live on the Northern California Coast. We figure we can make this RV into our "wee house" for the time being while we continue to look for the right lot. This way we will save all of the expenses of renting and can put all of that savings toward the next step.

Yes, we have an idea of the home, but the site will be a determining factor. We are just getting back on our feet after a lengthy "health opportunity" changed our lives and are looking so forward to simplifying while we regroup. It is unconventional, but you guys are doing it and so are many others. I'm going to embrace my inner bohemian!

How did you guys make the decision to go this route? Do you love it? Do you have any suggestions for making it better?

Thanks for you great information!!

Cate
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Old 09-25-2015, 02:02 PM   #5
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Cate, the short version is that about five years ago we started talking about where we wanted to live when we retired. While we were looking and talking someone mentioned full-timing. Both of us had thought about it, but until then neither had mentioned it. We did some preliminary research, enough to know that it was at least possible. We did several years of research, narrowing things down until we bought this coach 2 1/2 years ago. Things seemed to be changing, and we have been talking about switching from the MH to a towable, but no decisions yet.

I'll send you a PM with the long story.
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