Senior in Highschool, I want to live free... - Fiberglass RV
RV News RVBusiness 2021 Top 10 RVs of the Year, plus 56 additional debuts and must-see units → ×

Closed Thread
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 04-03-2015, 10:02 PM   #1
Junior Member
Name: Alex
Trailer: Shopping...
Posts: 1
Senior in Highschool, I want to live free...

Hi everyone! I just joined - hopefully I can get some information here.

In short I don't want to live what many consider a "normal" life. I make money, currently, working at a dog kennel. However, I have 5 clients for my own business I started (involving web-design, app programming/design, etc.)

My motto is: I love to program, but I don't want to be a programmer... As in, I don't want to sit in a cubicle my whole life. I want to experience the world - and people while I'm at it.

I would like (need?) solar on the trailer.. I have been looking at the 13' Scamp tailer (

I could do Craigslist; but I'm not in a financial position to fork over 5,000+ on the spot - meaning monthly payments could be nice (although I'd have to get a PO box unless they can do them virtually...)

I have a 99' Jeep Wrangler 4 Cyl. My max tow weight is 1500 lbs. So it has to be small.

TL;DR: I need (financial/living) advice how I, an 18 year old Highschool senior, can live freely in a trailer and travel the country. I have my own online business doing web-design and application development - but it's still 'lifting off'. I have 5 clients currently. I have a small car ('99 Jeep Wrangler - 4 Cyl.) I NEED internet for my business.
Namone is offline  
Old 04-03-2015, 10:55 PM   #2
Senior Member
Name: Michael
Trailer: Li'l Hauley
Posts: 5,892
Hi, and welcome! Advice, well, we have lots of advice around here, and you might even like some parts of it, LOL!

My advice goes like this: be patient. Buying a trailer will require money. It takes time to build up finances and credit rating. People selling trailers want cash on the barrelhead, not promises, and banks that take promises (called loans) need a track record of timely payments and stable income flow. Traveling around the country and being a free spirit isn't going to look favorable on a bank application, nor will it encourage a trailer owner to trust you on payments (even if you could find someone who would take payments). So... set yourself a realistic time goal (say, 2 or 3 years at least) during which you live in a S&B dwelling, pay bills, pay taxes, and build up more of a clientele. Also get a prepaid credit card that you can use to pay for gas, food, etc. and then replenish the card in full each month... this will start to build your credit score and eventually you can get a regular credit card, a small loan here or there, and so on. After 2-3 years of this you should have enough saved to pay cash for a trailer, plus a line of credit to use for emergency repairs or other unexpected things.
Mike Magee is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 05:59 AM   #3
jcstanley's Avatar
Name: john
Trailer: 30' jayco & 1974 Boler
Posts: 44
thats the best advice anyone could give you !!!! take your time . GOOD LUCK !!
jcstanley is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 06:30 AM   #4
Senior Member
Rick Mooyman's Avatar
Name: Rick
Trailer: 1971 Boler 13' / 2020 Ford Escape SEL AWD 2.0
Posts: 981
Hi Alex. I love the fact that you want to live small. Many people are giving up what is considered the Norm and going for Tiny Houses and campers and living off the grid.

Your Jeep however will not cut it as a tow vehicle. At 1500# MAX towing will put your trailer at or above the MAX once you get all your gear inside.

Take the advice given in here. Build your business, establish your credit and live your dream.
Rick Mooyman is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 07:30 AM   #5
Senior Member
Bob Miller's Avatar
Name: Bob
Trailer: 1973 Hunter Compact II
Posts: 7,912
Not to throw more rain on your dreams but:

Banks and other conventional loans sources:
1. Don't make loans on trailers over 10 years old. A $5000 Scamp will be over 10 years old.
2. Don't make loans to applicants under 21 unless then have a ton of money/work history for back-up or a solid co-signer.
3. Don't make loans without the applicant having a permanent established address.
4. Don't make loans without an established work/income history

As suggested, don't try to live tomorrow before it arrives, be patient, save money and get established.

The other options are:
1. Hit the lottery
2. Write a killer ap
3. Invent the next social media network.

BTW: Start planning on your next tow vehicle, your Jeep won't cut it for long.

Don't Shoot the Messenger(s)

Bob Miller is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 08:28 AM   #6
Senior Member
ColoRockiesFan's Avatar
Name: Lisa
Trailer: Former Escape 19 owner
Posts: 218
I admire your attitude and I think you can make this work. However, as others have said, it will take some time. Give yourself 2-3 years. Get another FT job while building your business. Live as cheaply as possible with many roommates. Save every penny. Pay cash for everything. At the end of the 2-3 years you may have enough money saved to pay cash for a new used tow vehicle and a used trailer.

Or, start working seasonally now for the NPS ... You can work all over the country and still build your business.

Pay cash for everything and stay out of debt.That will allow you to live free, go where you want, travel, and follow your dreams.
"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines, Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
ColoRockiesFan is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 09:09 AM   #7
Senior Member
Name: Greg
Trailer: 2008 Casita 17 SD
Posts: 1,601
Welcome Alex,
As an old geezer, I envy your youth and freedom, but as others have already said, your 4 cyl. Jeep is undersized for towing even a 13' trailer. And if you are going to "live" in it, I think that you would soon be very unhappy with only a 13 footer. There really isn't a whole lot of room inside. They're great for vacationing, but IMO they're not so great for full timing. Save your bucks and get yourself set up right with a bigger trailer and a more powerful tow vehicle, that is, if you really want to enjoy the trip so to speak.
Casita Greg is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 10:00 AM   #8
Senior Member
Name: Darwin
Trailer: 2002 19 ft Scamp 19 ft 5th Wheel
Posts: 3,203
Send a message via Yahoo to Darwin Maring
Enlist in the Army for a school that will train you in an occupation that will be in demand everywhere when you get out like X Ray tech for example. Save your money while you are in and purchase a egg when you get out and then start your carefree lifestyle.
Darwin Maring is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 11:02 AM   #9
Senior Member
honda03842's Avatar
Name: Norm and Ginny
Trailer: Scamp 16
Posts: 7,486
Go for it.

Ginny and I have been on the road for 14 years. I just wish I had your insight at your age, I can imagine how much our lives would be different if we had started off thinking smaller.

A single guy can live full time in a 13 foot trailer, Ginny and I have spent 310 days in a row in our Scamp 16 and we're two people and we're old and probably need more than an 18 year old.

I'm a believer that one can tow a small trailer with a small vehicle. We towed a Scamp 16 or equivalent for 7 years with the same 4 cylinder vehicle. It may mean different tires from the typical Jeep tires, different inflation pressures, ...
but I suspect you could tow a Boler 13 or a Scamp 13. Tell me more about your Jeep, model and engine size.

It may mean you won't be going up hills too fast, that you'll travel more of the non-interstates but you can do it. (The only thing the Interstates have going for them is speed, the most interesting roads are not interstates.

Most everyone who's writing about your the read is thinking from the perspective of a 50+ year old, not from that of an 18 year old. My niece backpacked Europe for a month living out of a backpack. She would come to our beach cottage for a weekend with 3 times as many clothes.

How much space does a couple of pairs of jeans and shorts take? Or you could pull a Jack Reacher and just stop at a thrift store when your clothes needed replacement.

I do agree that banks will probably not lend to you so you may need to accumulate some amount of money but it's not an earth shattering amount. For example our son bought a 1977 Scamp for $900. You need to become a Craig's List looker.

Wishing you well.
Norm and Ginny

2014 Honda Odyssey
1991 Scamp 16
honda03842 is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 11:23 AM   #10
Senior Member
Name: Anne
Trailer: 2014 Parkliner 2016 Honda Pilot
North Carolina
Posts: 191
Hi, Alex. Good for you to have a goal in mind!

For planning purposes, you might want to check out Sue has lots of financial history posted on her site. Since she is a heavy user of Internet services, often from remote places, her setup may also be helpful.

Others have posted some good financial and employment tips. I agree that having a good temporary employment backup possibility would be useful. (X ray tech was one mentioned, the medical field in general is a good possibility.) Another thought is to arrange your web services contracts so that you have a guaranteed monthly base income.

Best of luck!
-- Anne

Sent from my iPad using Fiberglass RV
neparker is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 11:37 AM   #11
Senior Member
Bob Miller's Avatar
Name: Bob
Trailer: 1973 Hunter Compact II
Posts: 7,912
"Another thought is to arrange your web services contracts so that you have a guaranteed monthly base income"

Hmmmm... Me thinks that "web service contracts" and "guaranteed monthly income" are mutually exclusive terms. ... LOL

Bob Miller is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 11:40 AM   #12
Commercial Member
brian m.'s Avatar
Name: Brian
Trailer: 17 ft Casita Spirit Deluxe
Posts: 490
I say go for it.
You're 18 years old.
2003 Casita SD 17'
brian m. is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 12:41 PM   #13
Name: Totie Fan
Trailer: Tote N Tarry
West Coast
Posts: 81
Which rig?

Great idea, if you spare yourself rent you can save a bundle.

Go see the youtubes by Nomadic Fanatic, by a young man who started documenting his life full time in an old Class C RV online for community college credit.

I would say if you're going to go full time, there's tons of really cheap older depreciated not bad shape Class C-s that owners are motivated to move and willing to swing a deal, such as a labor contract, you can work towards owning it. I sold once a van to a young man who wanted to live in it but he didn't have the means, and as nobody else was "biting" on it I let him make payments. He of course wanted me to let him have it and he said he would continue to make payments, but I laughed at that. Eventually little by little he earned enough and away he went.

He wanted a van because he was young and wanted to stealth urban camp. You have to decide where you're going to park a rig. For stealth camping or boondocking, a trailer hooked to a car will stand out, so will a Class C but not too badly if you can block out all of the night lights, and a van can be camouflaged to look like a construction van and can be parked anywhere.

If you have a drive-able rig there's a bit more security, as you can just scoot out without exiting the RV part in times you feel you need safety. In a Class C or Class A or Class B or outfitted van you can have a heater, shower, etc. You can do this in a trailer too. If you have a Jeep or salable vehicle this can be put towards a drive-able RV.

Having had all kinds of RVs and now working on a 13' trailer, in terms of ease to boondock, sheer comfort and on-road office space and life goal to save up for tangible asset purchase, I would recommend a short old Class C that's mechanically sound, everything works, while you earn money. You'll need places to park and stay, you'll need solar, then what I'd do is buy a small piece of land upon which you can park your rig or bigger old trailer while you continue to earn more money for "your life".
Tote-n-Tarry No.2 is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 01:25 PM   #14
Senior Member
Name: Darwin
Trailer: 2002 19 ft Scamp 19 ft 5th Wheel
Posts: 3,203
Send a message via Yahoo to Darwin Maring
It costs $$ to park with water, electricity and sewer hookups. I guess you could go to Slab City but you will not have internet, etc or you could purchase the book that lists ALL Walmarts and just overnight at a different one each day.
Darwin Maring is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 01:54 PM   #15
Senior Member
Bob Miller's Avatar
Name: Bob
Trailer: 1973 Hunter Compact II
Posts: 7,912
FWIW: The overnight parking at WalMart (and otherplaces) changes a lot faster than a book can keep up with. There is a Yahoo site ( that tries to stay current and has a downloadable listing. Of note is that more and more WM's don't allow overnight parking and there are huge areas, such as SoCal, that are devoid of free parking sites.

Bob Miller is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 01:55 PM   #16
Senior Member
Trailer: 2005 16 ft Scamp
Posts: 302
Hi Alex! Boy do I have a different message for you!

You can start traveling AND making money right out of high school to start fulfilling your dreams.

Go to Summer Jobs and Seasonal Jobs in Great Places | and find a job. For your first job (6-8 mo.) you will be living in a dorm, but you can save, save, save while there. You can work in awesome places like Yellowstone National Park, Lake Powell (this is a great one because they have an 8 mo. season) or a slew of other awesome places. While working, spend your off time building your business since you can do it from anywhere. Almost all of these jobs have free Wi-Fi, so you can save on paying for internet. And you just might meet people who could use your computer skills and be willing to pay for them. Rent is generally really cheap (in the neighborhood of $150-$200 per mo.) and that includes all utilities.

Be extremely frugal!!! I had a friend that worked for $9 hr and saved a little over $10,000 in one season! You CAN get you (if you sell your jeep) a nice little 6 cyl. used tow vehicle and a used 13' Scamp for that. All of my work camping jobs have had showers so a 13' will do you for another year of working when you can save up for a 16' trailer. If you pay attention to coolworks, you will see they have a place just for RV owners wanting to work for when you get your trailer.

I am currently working at Lake Powell, I have been doing this for seven years now and have traveled and worked in some of the most beautiful places in the country. I get PAID to do it!

Please feel free to message me if you find you have questions, I can look up the job offers you think you might like and tell you the +/- of them.

Better than sittin' in a freaking cubicle for 3-4 years!
Monica M is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 02:06 PM   #17
Senior Member
Donna D.'s Avatar
Name: Donna D
Trailer: Escape 5.0 TA, 2014
Posts: 25,171
How refreshing to read about a young person trying to pursue this goal. You can make it happen. It will take some planning and some reading. If you'd like to read about two folks who full-time (doing very similar work) boondock a LOT, check out Chris and Cherie's site. Granted they're in a vintage bus (now), but started out in a T@B trailer: Technomadia | Adventures in Nomadic Serendipity

Best of luck to you Alex. Gosh, I wish I knew then, what I know now... I would have followed my dreams an 'el of a lot earlier!

Donna D.
Ten Forward - 2014 Escape 5.0 TA
Double Yolk - 1988 16' Scamp Deluxe
Donna D. is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 02:29 PM   #18
Senior Member
Trailer: 2005 16 ft Scamp
Posts: 302
Originally Posted by Donna D. View Post

Best of luck to you Alex. Gosh, I wish I knew then, what I know now... I would have followed my dreams an 'el of a lot earlier!

Me too!!!
Monica M is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 05:40 PM   #19
Senior Member
papa-t's Avatar
Name: Ted
Trailer: (Dark side)Crossroads Now
Glade Valley, North Carolina
Posts: 980
Good luck Alex. If you really want it. I say go for it. May take a little longer to work and save up the money but time is on your side.
“I have tried to live my life so that my family would love me and my friends would respect me. The others can do whatever the Hell they please!” —John Wayne
papa-t is offline  
Old 04-04-2015, 06:02 PM   #20
Senior Member
Glenn Baglo's Avatar
Name: Glenn ( second 'n' is silent )
Trailer: 2009 Escape 17B 2020 Toyota Highlander XLE
British Columbia
Posts: 7,245
All the data says stay in school, earn more money over a lifetime. I don't think just a high school education cuts it anymore.
I'm not speaking from experience since I did okay and I never did get the two courses I needed for graduation. Web designer is one of those courses you see advertised on TV, suggesting that there are thousands upon thousands of web designers out there.
On the other hand, lots of baristas out there with BAs too.
What happens to the hole when the cheese is gone?
- Bertolt Brecht
Glenn Baglo is online now  
Closed Thread

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Golden Age Passports Replaced by New Interagency Senior/Access Recreat Adrian W General Chat 4 07-26-2008 12:50 AM
Senior, Disabled and Veterans Passes Pete Dumbleton General Chat 4 06-12-2008 03:00 AM
Free campsites or almost FREE Kevin K General Chat 2 10-24-2007 03:54 PM
FREE FREE JOHN PAUL EVANS Classified Archives 21 12-29-2006 11:25 AM

» Upcoming Events
No events scheduled in
the next 465 days.
» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:40 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions Inc.