How Much Does Living Fulltime in an RV Cost?

My Rig

Everyone wants to know, “How much does it cost?” They want to see a detailed chart, breaking down every little expense, as if every RVer is living the same life, and as if food and gas prices aren’t ever increasing. So, I’m not doing a break down chart!

If you have credit card debt, that will remain the same. You will still spend the same amount on food. If you financed your RV, you can count that as rent or a mortgage, as well as any camping fees you might incur. But, even with an RV payment, and paying for a space, you will most likely come out cheaper than rent or a mortgage, and your utilities bills will either be gone, or, if where you are parked charges for electric, much, much less, even with buying propane.

So you might figure, overall, the cost may be a few hundred to a thousand dollars less per month, depending on how much you were paying before to live in a house or an apartment, and how much you are paying now for your RV, and a place to park it.

Another consideration, are you parking it in an RV park in California, or some other pricey and highly populated state, or boondocking on BLM land in Arizona or Nevada? There is “free camping”, but you may need to leave the area of the country you now live in, and head out West, where most of the “free camping” BLM land is. And not all of the free camping areas will be suitable for you RV; many of the free campgrounds are in the back country, and best accessed with a 4X4 truck camper. Some are not on level ground. Some of these areas may not have solid cell phone or Wifi signals. So there will be trade offs, and you MUST take the limitations of your particular RV into consideration. Getting stuck in the back country will not be good for your budget!

How much does gas cost? Good question, ask that next year, and the answer will be “more”. Are you driving across country constantly, putting in 1,000 miles or more per month, or sitting parked for a month at a time? Are you driving a Class B that gets 15 mpg, or a Class A that gets 8 mpg? How much does it cost is something you will have to figure out yourself, according to your own situation. Driving and moving around constantly is going to burn up the gas budget a lot faster, no matter what you drive, than finding a nice place to park, and staying in place for a month, or more.

How much it costs is mostly up to you. It depends on a lot of the usual factors, such as is your RV paid off or financed, how far you drive every month, and what where you choose to park it. But the RV lifestyle is flexible to each individual situation, so make it your own!

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