New? Are you full timing on Social Security? - Page 5 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 11-30-2015, 08:22 AM   #57
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Name: George
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Hi Jason,
My wife and I are not full timers. We are on Social Security. We have been out for a 4 month period with our Scamp and have a feel for what full timing would be like.

I'm a sailor also. I have friends we have known for just short of 20 years. They sold their home in about 1995 and lived on a boat about 4 yrs. They sailed from Michigan, through the Erie canal to New York City, on to Florida with a couple of trips to the Bahamas. They sold the boat in 1999 and bought a stick built trailer of about 20 ft and a truck to pull it. They were full timers living in the trailer for the next 12 yrs. They were volunteers 5 months a year at a north Michigan marina where they got a free camping spot with utilities. This would be much like being " a camp host". In the fall they would go to Texas
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Old 11-30-2015, 08:46 AM   #58
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Sorry, I accidentally posted early. They would go to Aransas, Tx. They grew old and health concerns forced them to buy a 60 ft trailer in a park near Lansing, MI, close to their kids. At this point the gal was really happy to have a home again after about 20 yrs and the man was senile. It worked for them and they lived on a shoestring but one size doesn't fit all.
We did spend 4 months in our Scamp last year. We tried to use federal parks whenever possible. Craters of the Moon nat monument cost us $5 a night. When we got to Yellowstone it was full and we camped 1 night just outside of the park for about $40. Most National Parks ran about $16 a night. We found it easy to get a camping site at National and State Parks on Sunday - Thursday but weekends often need about 3-4 week in advance reservation. In popular spots during peak season it is nearly impossible to get into some Parks. Ortuna Lock Corps of Engineers Park is an example, in southern Florida. Private parks can be expensive but monthly stays are much cheaper. We get about 15 miles to the gallon towing and about 22 when unhooked. We have an outdoor grill which I use often. A 1 lb canister will grill 8-10 times. We hit the stores about every 3 days or so to provision. We often eat out when we're on a trip shopping.
Full timing on Social Security is probably possible for most. Traveling in a Scamp is travelling "small". We were the smallest trailer at most every private park we stayed at. Social Security alone just means a bit smaller.
I find an AARP study that put the median SS income for a male in 2012 at $16,295 and a woman at $11,999. Thats about $28,000/yr. Half of us would have more and half less. I think it's doable for those in the middle and above. Again, one size doesn't fit all.
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Old 11-30-2015, 10:20 AM   #59
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Guys and Gals this thread is going great I'm learning a lot.
Thanks! 👍🏼


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Old 11-30-2015, 04:00 PM   #60
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As I indicated before, we will soon be full timers if all goes according to plan. We have already needed to revise our itinerary as a result of the Cdn dollar value. I have noticed that most people posting are from the U.S.A., Are there any Canadian full timers that can give insight into lower cost parks/and perks we could take advantage of in Canada?
I enjoy reading everyone's posts. keep it up ��
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Old 11-30-2015, 04:07 PM   #61
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Guys and Gals this thread is going great I'm learning a lot.
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Gals? ..... Gals????
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Old 11-30-2015, 05:39 PM   #62
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Full time camping with nice amenities for $12 a night....

When I go camping I usually go to Michigan state forest campgrounds. No electric, no showers, etc, just outhouses.

But they are usually on a small lake, not crowded, and cost maybe $15 a night.

State parks with utilities are generally $25 a night. Either one is fun for a week's vacation but I sure wouldn't want to do that full time.

My wife and I have spent a few months in Florida the last two winters, staying in a park model home in a park that also has a small number of rv sites.

There are also several all-rv parks in the area. The parks have heated pools, community centers with lots of activities, etc.

For a short time stay rates are generally in the neighborhood of $40 a night.

Monthly rates are in the neighborhood of $800. Three months may go for perhaps $2,000 and they will give you a full 6 months for perhaps $2,200.

If my math is correct that works out to about $12 a night, electric included.

If you wanted the whole year it would probably only add a few hundred dollars more total.

I just did a quick search of rv parks in central Florida to come up with those numbers.

Central florida may be less expensive that the coasts. We've spent our time in Sebring and really enjoyed it.

Just 90 minutes to either coast, or to the Orlando parks or the Everglades.

I'm not a beach person. every time I sun bathe on the beach an environmentalist shows up and tries to roll me into the water.

For someone with a paid for trailer $12 bucks a night should be doable on an SS income.
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Old 11-30-2015, 07:06 PM   #63
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Simply put is your fixed home cost less than or greater than your full time RV cost? Are you going to eliminate that home cost or add to it with your full timing?


If you will be maintaining a home with taxes & insurance possibly a mortgage that would make costs for travel and campground all additional costs. Would make the rental agent sound like a very good idea unless you had enough disposable income to afford to full time and own a home. And pay for lawn and other maintenance while on the road.


Food should be about the same either way, possibly less for groceries since camping one may tend to cook simpler meals... offset by possibly a few (or many) more restaurant meals.


That is sort of what makes it all a guess until you start writing down a budget with actual dollar amounts. I do know that mortgage and even rent in many areas is a whole lot more than $15 a night that many say they budget for lodging in the camper.


Me personally I would like to travel a bit in retirement but both wife and myself have hobbies that require space and social activities (her more than me) that would make extended time away a poor trade off. Going to have to have a place for the work benches and her dance practice so not going to get out of having a residence, at least in our case.


I would start by sitting down and listing all known can't be avoided expenses which may or may not include a permanent home. Then work out from there. With a fudge factor of at least 15 or 20 percent.
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Old 11-30-2015, 07:22 PM   #64
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Don't forget inflation, or senility.
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Old 11-30-2015, 08:04 PM   #65
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Gals? ..... Gals????

Autocorrect on my phone bob!


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Old 11-30-2015, 08:31 PM   #66
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Who says full timing has to be forever???? When we are tired of travelling (???) and the nomad lifestyle, we will go back to retirement plan A; rent an apartment and settle in Manitoba. That may be in 2 years maybe in 10-15 years; but we plan to make the most of it while we can, just because we can.
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Old 12-01-2015, 05:55 AM   #67
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Who says full timing has to be forever???? When we are tired of travelling (???) and the nomad lifestyle, we will go back to retirement plan A; rent an apartment and settle in Manitoba. That may be in 2 years maybe in 10-15 years; but we plan to make the most of it while we can, just because we can.

Yes! I totally agree with your spirit and philosophy


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Old 12-01-2015, 06:48 AM   #68
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We're Escapees and know a lot of retired from fulltiming people. They are all enamoured with our series of little trailers, all wishing they had a small rig and could still be out there. The flame never dies in full timers.

Most of them had large, expensive rigs. At some time those rigs need replacement, usually around 10-15 years of daily use, they're looking at, these days, possibly a $100,000 expenditure. Often the cost ends the thought of continuing on along with the effort and energy required by a big rig.

There's little exposure to small rigs, little understanding of the possibility.

Lastly in life, and often, though not always, on this website, I detect "it can't be done". Most of the time in life if you have the will, if you prepare, if you really want it, it can be done.

Very often those they say it can't be done are those that haven't done it.
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Old 12-01-2015, 01:15 PM   #69
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Don't forget inflation, or senility.
On the other hand, here’s a real money saver. You can deduct for funeral costs if you expire in Florida; your neighbors in the RV park can just have the gators take care of the carcass. If it happens in Arizona, they can just set you out next to a cactus and the coyotes will pick the carcass clean in no time. OR, if you time it right and expire at Burning Man, you may be able to get a free cremation.

No fuss, no muss and it saves the cost of air freight to ship your sorry bones back to plant you in the ground!

Hey, you don’t have to thank me, I’m just trying to help make the numbers work for you
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Old 12-01-2015, 01:48 PM   #70
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