I'm in a very similar situation (two kids, boy and girl, ages 8 and 10) and we're in a 13' Boler
We bought and restored the Boler
last spring. Although we used it as a sort of rolling Motel room for a trip out west to visit family, we haven't gotten a chance to REALLY camp in it until this summer. So - this summers trips will be our final test to see if the Boler
is likely to work for us in the long-term...
Is the rear bed large enough to be comfortable? The stock bed is about 44" wide and that includes a fairly serious curve along the backside. Just this spring, I added a minor extension which bumps the bed out to 48". We'll see if that works for us.
Will the bunks work for the kids long-term? This one is actually easier to address. Right now, my kids LOVE the bunks. They're fairly narrow, but no more so than your typical sleeping bag. Length isn't an issue either. Weight
limits are the issue. The top bunk isn't rated to hold more than about 100lbs. Now - they CAN be reinforced. If we decide to hang onto the Boler for another few years I'll be adding bracing under the seat as well as under the rear bunk support. That will increase its capacity greatly and prevent it from being a problem.
Is a 13' trailer large enough to keep people from killing each other on rainy days? Just this year I got a self-supporting screen room ($35) which I set up in front of the Boler. A lot of our 'sitting around' is done out there and it's protected enough to be dry in all but a driving storm. Having that outside space helps a great deal. I'm not quite sure how we'd be if we were forced to spend several hours all together inside the Boler though. :) The key point there may be just remembering that there's always the car and a nearby town that's bound to have a movie theatre. :)
OK, That being said: What sort of trailers am I eyeing, in the event we decide the Boler isn't gonna cut it?
1) Pop-up (yeah, ya-all can lynch me now). Benefit being large beds, big living space, small package to tow, easy to put in garage. Downside: I'm sure I'd get sick of setting the thing up and taking down. Concerns about rain. Tenting has GOT to be the weak point. Oh - and lifter mechanisms have a reputation for failing.
2) Big egg (16-17 footer). Several look like possibilities. My current personal favorite would be a Casita
17' spirit standard. Bigger rear bed, plenty of seating areas. Another option might be the Wood custom Scamp
with side dinette (if we could drop the front bath and get a bunk/couch instead.)
3) Other trailers. I don't really like the hybrids - maybe if they made them smaller, but they're all bigger than they need to be. There are several current (or recent year) trailers that might be good options. All have their good points, none are ideal of course.
If you are as yet unsure what you might want and what might work. You might consider finding an economic used trailer. That would allow you to get some camping time in. Doing that, you'll figure out what it is you DO and DON'T want. After that, you can sell your experiment and buy the trailer that fits your new (experienced) want-list. If you get an older egg (15yr +), you're virtually guaranteed that you won't lose any money when you sell it so it's a fairly cheap learning experience.