My Experience of Living in an RV

I have decided to spend my whole winter living in an RV, and I am wondering if this experience is going to change me. In fact, I hope it is, and I am planning for it, too.

Today, I want to share the ways in which living in an RV can change your lifestyle and your outlook on things.

There is a saying that says that the things we own end up owning us. We make decisions every single day on what to purchase, what to keep, what to add to the things that we have.

Owning things can give us a sense of comfort, a sense of security, a sense of self-reliance. We humans tend to accumulate these things to feel that we are prepared, that we have the things that we need at our fingertips.

RV on road

Making the decision of living fulltime in an RV in winter caused me to look at all of my belongings and pick what limited amount I wanted to take with me. I am hoping that when I return home having lived the whole winter on less, it will be easier for me to dispose of some of the things I failed to get rid of in my decluttering sessions so far.

As we go forward and learn to live with less, so many things become more apparent. Some of those reasons that we held on to things are some of the same reasons that I now want to get rid of things and live with less.

There is a comfort in knowing that I do not need as much money and as much stuff to live or to be happy and content.

There is a confidence in planning my budget that allows me to know the extra things that I can do and experience because I have already planned for it.

There is a choice in picking my favorite items, my most comfortable, versatile or high quality items that I decide to keep.

Since I am in a camper, I want to keep things organized and neat. I want to keep the counters clean. I want to keep everything put away every single day. When you live in an environment that is this small, it can feel cluttered, like you have no space to move around. Especially on a rainy or snowy day, you can get cabin fever even easier if those areas are not kept clean.

So, every day, I make my bed, I put away my blankets, I do my dishes, I clear my counters and I put away everything I brought with me to the spot allocated to that exact thing. I do hope that this habit will remain also when I come back home, and I will be able to keep my house clean and neat all the time.

My RV only has one shelf for clothing. When my six kids were younger and we would go on trips with our pop up camper, we would only take four outfits per person, and we would stop along the way, wash those and rewear them. We did not have a lot of space so we planned it that way, and it still met our needs.

Watching the sun set outside RV

I am using the same philosophy in my RV this winter. Having a specific amount of space dedicated to a type of item is a great decluttering technique, and this is what I had to do with my one shelf.

Honestly, I was planning to bring even less stuff than I ended up bringing with me. As I was packing, I had a lot of sleeveless tops, shorts and capris, and my husband convinced me it can get cold down there, which is definitely true, especially at night.

This meant that I had a wide span of weather conditions that I had to pack for, but I just had the one shelf. I packed a heavy sweater, a coat, jeans, an additional long sleeve sweater, and three different jackets to make sure that I could cover the different fluctuations in the temperature.

However, along with that, I only packed four T-shirts, three sleeveless shirts, one thin long-sleeved shirt, and three shorts. Besides a swimsuit, underwear, pajamas, and socks, I only brought 19 clothing items for the 15 weeks I am staying here.

What I was going to wear was not a really big deal for me. I looked at the comfort and versatility and I wanted to make sure that I picked out pieces that I would enjoy wearing. I did not really pack anything dressier, but I do have a couple of things that could technically work for an occasion that calls for something dressier.

For the most part, I just packed very versatile comfortable pieces that would allow me to take walks, to enjoy the climate, to sit outside, and to be in more of a camping type environment. Every morning instead of worrying about what to wear I just put on whatever suits the weather, and it is such a relief.

At one point, we considered purchasing a place in either Florida or Texas, and I am honestly glad we did not. Buying another piece of property is another way of owning more stuff that causes more complications to our lives.

Purchasing a place means you have to pay your electricity year round, have somebody cutting your grass year round, be responsible for so many extra things and carrying so many extra expenses.

The way it is now, we come down here, we pay while we are here, then we take the camper home. All of those costs go away, so I can save for the next year if I choose to do it again.

I believe this is how we should look at owning things. Are the things we own more of a burden than they are a comfort? Are they more of a hassle or are they costing us more money than if we have less?

Living in an RV

I am hoping that once I come back home, I will be able to retain the same mindset and finally let go of things that are holding me back.

Are there things in your life that are a burden more than a joy? Do you actively try to get rid of the unnecessary stuff and live minimally? Let me know in the comments!

Next, learn How I Live on Extreme Budget Without Missing Out.

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 1 comment
  • Coventrybird Coventrybird on May 07, 2024
    Have been wanting to move into a camper and see the country. Would you ever consider doing it year round? Cost involved?