Roaming and Rolling

Welcome, fellow adventurers! Today, we’re diving headfirst into the whimsical world of retiring in an RV. So, you might be considering selling your home, embracing a nomadic lifestyle, and spending your golden years traveling like you’re perpetually lost. Or you might just want to enjoy the open road for part of the year. Well, either way, hold onto your steering wheels, because we’re about to explore the zany pros and cons of RV life including some helpful planning tips at the end!

Let’s examine a few things to consider before trading your backyard for the open highway. It might sound romantic and dreamlike in your head, but it’s essential to prepare yourself for the reality of RV life, mentally and physically, before embarking on this wild ride.


If you decide to sell your home entirely and trade it in for full-time RV life, you will have to forget about hoarding that collection of garden gnomes as you will no longer have a garden to tend. With the minimal space in an RV, you’ll likely have to say goodbye to most of your belongings. Goodbye, clutter; hello, minimalist!  You might even want to invest in a storage facility with all the things you’ll be leaving behind, or at least pay to rent a unit to store the items you may use later. Hey, you might realize this new RV life is not for you and you might want to keep all of your old stuff just in case. One of our clients sold their million-dollar dream home to move into their 100th vehicle, an RV, and were set to travel the entire USA, only to realize after 6 months that they couldn’t take it anymore. They had to start all over again by furnishing a new home. Don’t forget the cost of an RV can be as much as a house! You might want to keep your home and rent it out while you travel to make some extra money on VRBO, or Airbnb, or hire a management company to manage your home and rental agreement while you’re away.

Less Overhead Expenses:

Living in an RV can save you money, as you’ll likely have lower utility bills. Plus, who needs a landscaper when you can mow your “lawn” in a matter of minutes (more like sweeping off your mat)? You will probably pay less overall, but you might be paying a decent amount of money to live like you are poor.  Plus, don’t forget gas and the cost of RV parks that range from dirt cheap and unclean to posh and prestige. See below for a humorous explanation of choosing places to stay.

It Can be Cheaper Than Living in a House:

While we’re on the subject of savings, let’s talk about the almighty dollar. By downsizing and reducing your living expenses, RV life can be surprisingly budget-friendly. More cash for that retirement fund… or, you know, a lifetime supply of beef jerky since your fridge will be the size of one in a college dorm room–oh wait your entire RV might actually be the size of your college dorm room!

You Get to Travel Wherever you Want:

No more daydreaming at your office desk about visiting exotic places. In an RV, you have the power to go wherever the road takes you. The world is your oyster, and the highways are your bumpy, pothole-filled playground. Just be careful not to be like Bob from the movie RV and get your RV stuck on a cliff!

You Can Spend More Time in Nature and Less Time in Front of the TV:

Goodbye, Netflix addiction! Living in an RV encourages you to embrace the great outdoors. Trade in your remote control for a pair of hiking boots and rediscover the joys of fresh air, stunning landscapes, and the occasional squirrel staring you down, or raccoon throwing your trash everywhere. You most likely won’t have good enough internet to stream any shows anyway. If you do want to watch an occasional movie, you could go “old school” and bring some DVDs with you.

You Get to Meet New People:

RV parks are like small, quirky communities filled with other adventurers seeking their own unique stories. Picture a neighborhood where everyone shares their tales of epic RV fails and the mysteries of dumping stations. It’s like a sitcom waiting to happen!

You Can Experience Personal Growth Living in an RV During Retirement: 

The challenges of RV life can foster personal growth. From navigating tight parking spaces to leveling your motor home so you are not sleeping with your feet above your head, you’ll discover hidden talents you never knew you had. It’s like living in an ongoing DIY reality show!
Now, let’s embrace our sense of humor and explore some of the hilarious cons of RV living. After all, laughter is the best way to navigate any bumpy road ahead!

The Septic Tank is Full: 

Ah, the joy of dealing with sewage. Nothing says “adventure” like playing a round of “drain the poop tank” in the wee hours of the morning. Just remember to keep a plunger handy; it’s the RV version of a knight in shining armor.

Living in a Small Space with a Loved One:

Spending 24/7 in a confined space with your partner can be an exciting test of patience and compatibility. Let’s just say it’s an excellent opportunity for investing in both noise-canceling headphones and a marriage counselor’s number.

No Stability or One Place to Truly Call Home:

When living in an RV, home is wherever you park it. For those who thrive on stability, be prepared for a life of perpetual motion and a mailing address that changes more often than a chameleon’s skin color.

Ahh, noises—the symphony of RV life! The cacophony that comes with living on the road.

  1. The Midnight Symphony of Nature: Nature is a beautiful thing, especially when it decides to hold a midnight concert just outside your window. From the haunting hoots of owls to the boisterous croaks of frogs, it’s like having front-row seats to a wildlife rave. Just don’t be surprised if you find yourself humming along with the chorus of nocturnal creatures. It’s nature’s way of reminding you that sleep is overrated.

  2. The March of Morning Early Birds: Rise and shine, dear RV dweller! As the sun peeks over the horizon, a chorus of jingling dog collars and chirping birds announces the start of another day. It’s like an alarm clock without the luxury of a snooze button. So, grab your cup of coffee, embrace the chirpy melodies, and let the morning noise be your soundtrack to adventure.

  3. The comedic ballet of RV parking gone awry: Let’s have a laugh at the hilarity that ensues when someone struggles to squeeze their RV into a tight spot. Watch in awe as an RV owner attempts the intricate dance known as backing up. It’s a mesmerizing spectacle of wheel-turning, hand gestures, and increasingly colorful language. Picture a game of RV Twister, where the objective is to contort the vehicle into mind-boggling positions while avoiding collision with innocent bystanders and stationary objects. It’s a performance that could rival any Cirque du Soleil act, complete with gasps from the audience and a few misplaced cones.

Navigating Where to Stay

Ah, the wonders of RV park costs! It’s a spectrum as vast and unpredictable as the open road itself. Let’s take a detour into the wild world of RV park pricing and amenities.

Dirt Cheap and Unclean 

Picture an RV park nestled in the heart of nowhere, offering rates so low they make you question if they’ve somehow cracked the code of free lodging. But as you drive through the entrance, you realize the only amenities they have are a sketchy porta-potty and a “water feature” that suspiciously resembles a mosquito breeding ground. Who needs pristine bathrooms when you can have an authentic wilderness experience, right? Picture a patch of land with a few makeshift hookups and a sign that says, “Beware of the Wild Raccoons.” You’ll experience the thrill of camping with a side of adventurous critter encounters—all at a price that won’t break the bank. Just remember to bring extra bug spray and your sense of humor.

The Budget-Friendly Basic

Moving up the price ladder, we encounter budget-friendly parks that provide the bare essentials. Think gravel lots, basic amenities, and communal bathrooms that require bravery and a strategic bladder-holding technique. It’s a bit like roughing it but with the luxury of four wheels and a roof over your head.

The Mid-Range Marvels

Now we’re in the sweet spot—the RV parks that strike a balance between affordability and a touch of comfort. These parks offer amenities like hot showers, laundry facilities, and perhaps even a pool to splash around in. It’s like a vacation resort, minus the swanky cocktails and the need for an overpriced tropical shirt. You might even find a quaint little petting zoo next door, complete with goats who have a taste for shoelaces.

The Upscale Oasis

Welcome to the land of poshness, where RV parks resemble five-star resorts. These heavenly abodes feature meticulously manicured lawns, full-service hookups, and concierge services that can even arrange a masseuse to knead your road-weary muscles. It’s an RV paradise where luxury and relaxation go hand in hand. Prepare to experience spa-like bathrooms, tennis courts, and even a private chef who exclusively cooks gourmet meals for RV enthusiasts. Finally, an opportunity to dine on caviar while simultaneously worrying about dumping your black tank.

Just be prepared to pay a small fortune for the privilege of parking your home on wheels in the lap of opulence.

The Hidden Gems

Somewhere in the vast middle ground lie the hidden gems of RV parks. These quirky, unassuming spots might not have gold-plated toilets or crystal chandeliers, but they have an undeniable charm that can’t be replicated. You might stumble upon a family-run park where the owners bake fresh cookies daily or discover a spot with breathtaking views that even the most skilled Instagram filters can’t do justice. It’s like stumbling upon the Loch Ness Monster riding a unicorn—an extraordinary find that leaves you feeling blessed and slightly confused. Who needs the extra amenities when you can have genuine connections and memories that money can’t buy?

The Budget Balancing Act

For those with a limited travel fund, finding an affordable yet pleasant RV park can feel like solving a Rubik’s Cube. You scour the internet, read countless reviews, and eventually settle on a place that seems reasonably priced. But when you arrive, you realize that the price tag is proportional to the size of your RV. Cue the comical sight of your monster-sized rig squeezing into a space better suited for a toddler’s tricycle.

Remember, in the world of RV parks, it’s not always about the cost or the level of luxury. It’s about the memories, the adventures, and the stories you’ll share with fellow travelers around the communal campfire. So, whether you find yourself in a posh paradise or a dirt-cheap diamond in the rough, embrace the amusement of the RV park spectrum and savor every moment of your nomadic journey. Happy trails and may your RV adventures be filled with laughter and unforgettable experiences!

All joking aside, here are some serious and helpful tips to consider when deciding if you want to retire to RV life:

  1. Doctors and healthcare professionals–how will you plan for annual visits as well as picking up prescriptions along the way? Make a plan for your medical needs.

  2. Hire a financial advisor to help you navigate your financial decisions as well as help you manage your investments along the way.

  3. Will you sell your home, or rent it out on VRBO, or Airbnb? If you are renting out your home, will you be managing your property yourself, or will you hire someone to take care of it?

  4. Do you have a will and estate plan?

  5. Do you have a plan and reservations for your initial months of traveling?

  6. Don’t forget to plan where you will stay based on the weather!

  7. Here is a packing list of the must-haves for RV living from

Check out our new podcast episode coming soon on the topic of Retiring in an RV with host Reid Trego and Goodwin Investment Advisory founder, Tim Goodwin as well as debut guest Tara Bruce, GIA Marketing Manager.  Tim shares some funny stories about his family’s adventures in an RV and Tara shares about her parents who tried to retire in an RV.  

Disclosure – The information provided is general in nature and is for information purposes only. Please contact us for any questions relating to the content above, or to discuss your specific situation. The ideas shared are based on our experience, and may not apply to your unique situation. GIA does not earn any compensation from any of the non-GIA links provided. Please consider your specific health and wellness situation to determine what is good for you.
By Published On: August 23rd, 2023

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About the Author: Tara Bruce

Tara Bruce
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