This is Why

This is Why

Who would sell all of their belongings and move into an RV on purpose?   WHY?

I found this Theodore Roosevelt quote on a sign at the docks at “Bud and Mary’s”  in Islamorada (Florida Keys).  After a bit of research I found that it came from a speech he given in Chicago on April 10 1899. (the full excerpt from the speech is at the bottom of the post)

Bud and Mary’s is a marina that houses a large charter fishing fleet.  Bordered by turquoise waters, and palm trees it is located on a cut between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic ocean.

This sign seems appropriate in a place where men and women are living very full lives and pursuing their passions.  The hard working / hard playing folks at the docks who cater to the tourists are living the vacation that other people save up all year to experience.

 

It may not bring financial riches but having met many of these folks, it is quite obvious that the majority of them live fulfilled lives of adventure and share their passion with those they come in contact with.

Is this statement overly romantic?  

Maybe.

Is it possible that these folks are grinding out a living and just getting by?  Maybe.

How many of these people are there because they chased a dream?  I will venture to say a good many of them.

These folks smile and laugh more than most people I know.  Their language is colorful and they walk and talk with enthusiasm.

These men and women live passionate lives.  

I want to do the same.

My wife and I have spent the last 20 years raising our 2 kids.  They were our priority.  Providing for them was our goal in life.  A safe home, stability, food on the table, enjoyable experiences and teachable moments.  We took the road most traveled, we got jobs, built a house and worked day to day looking forward to the weekends and vacations.  The wife and I have no complaints, it was a fun 20 years and our children grew into healthy and happy adults who will add value to this world.

Now what?

We have decided that it’s time to get outside of our comfort zone and go take chances on living a life that will create great stories and memories worth sharing.  It’s time to dare mighty things.

 

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done them better.”

Overly dramatic again?……maybe.  But we are going for it nonetheless.

Is moving into an RV in our mid 40’s and traveling the US working seasonal employment daring?  Maybe not by Mr Roosevelt’s definition but I think we are entering “the arena”.

What will we discover?

Who will we meet?

What will we get good at through necessity?

What lessons will we learn as a result of trying?

What doors will open as a result of us just showing up?

How will he handle the adversities?

These are all unknown but we welcome the process of finding out.

Win or lose, intelligent or folly we are going for it.  We have done the planning, put the pieces in place and welcome the challenges ahead.

That is why.

Please let us know you thoughts in the comment section below!

We bought an RV

We bought an RV

Video tour of the “New House” on purchase day

And the adventure begins

This was a pretty crazy day for the boss and I.  

We were committed to moving into an RV but had no idea it would happen this quick. The story of how we decided to make this purchase is posted below the video.   Events before and after the purchase can be found in our Jounal.

 

This is the account of us buying our RV as recorded in our journal…

6/22/2016  The Plot Thickens

Yesterday the Boss and I sat down to figure out some of financial goals.  We figured out out emergency funds goals for our invest properties and What we wanted on hand for emergency cash.  We also figured out our expected monthly travel budget!   The numbers are estimates based on our current cost of living but I believe we are pretty accurate knowing our spending habits.  

The big unknown is HEALTH INSURANCE…..this will be the next hurdle.

Today we spend the day driving central Florida looking at RV’s.  WE started last night on craigslist and a few RV sales sites and there are sooo many options we set out to educate ourselves a bit.

We managed to decide on what we want and don’t want, approximate size to meet our needs and have an idea what we will need to spend.  Too are lots of options, brands, and configurations.  Decisions need to be made.

6/25/2016

Sitting at home in the early afternoon today, engaged in the same conversation as usual (working out details of our escape)  the boss stated that if living in an RV for the last months here in Florida would shorten our time until freedom she was in.

We worked out the math and found that if we put a renter into our primary residence and moved into our camper we could increase our savings rate by $570 a month.  In 9 months that +5130 extra = over 2  months on the road worth of emergency fund!  It will require we find a place to park with utilities for $650 a month.

I was surprised as hell by her ambition and at the same time a bit frightened that the reality of it happening was in front of me.

Looking around at RV’s (specifically 5th wheels) the other day we ran into a very impressive deal.  A 31’ fifth wheel in like new condition for 5k under retail price.  It met all of our needs and the boss found it very comfortable. Long story short we agreed to return and take a look at it, arrived, made a lowball offer and THE DEALER ACCEPTED THE OFFER!

We now own a 5th wheel camper.  We don’t have a truck to pull it yet but we own a camper!

The dealer agreed to deliver it when we were ready so now we need a place to put it.

This week will be “find a place to put our new home” week.  More to come soon!

Add-on (written 7/17/2016)

While reading back through my journal I realized that this short paragraph stating we found an RV and then bought it sounds a bit rash (it was a bit rash, but none the less) The longer version of the story is as follows:

The boss and I had no idea of what we were looking for in a camper/new home with wheels.  Our search started with local used RV lots.  We looked at:

  1. Pop-ups and small tow-behinds (way to small and no bathrooms)  –I have to admit I liked the prices and the idea of towing behind a smaller vehicle!
  2. Small motor coaches (Class C).  Although they had bathrooms (sort of) the boss and I decided that the space was a bit too intimate.
  3. WE RULED OUT Class B and C coaches.  WE didn’t like the idea that if our vehicle broke down our house would be in the shop as well.  The prices of these units were a bit intimidating as well.
  4. Larger tow-behind campers were nice but the small roofs and low ground clearance were turnoffs.  (I am 6’4”)
  5. WE DISCOVERED 5th-Wheels!

What drew us to fifth wheels was:  1)  Bang for the buck! (ignoring the price of the truck to pull it)  2)  The ceiling height!  What a spacious living space (if you can consider 300ft spacious) 3) The bathrooms and bedrooms would fit the needs of a large adult and his mate.

Once we discovered that we were shopping for a fifth wheel we focused our search.  The boss wanted comfort, storage and utility.  My focus was a bed that would fit me, a size that would be manageable to tow and park and a price tag that would allow us to purchase without debt!

We found it a bit too quickly as mentioned above.  Great price, met all of our needs and the deal was closed.

The purchase was as follows.  I called the salesman a day after showing us the rig asking him to explain why the price was $6000 under any price I could find online by any other seller.  His reply appeared honest (I am distrustful of salesmen) when he said they got a good deal on it through trade-in and they just wanted to move it off the lot.  He suggested that if I was interested I come in and make an offer.

Our intention was to remain debt-free through this process so we were hesitant to go back and make the offer on something we did not have the cash for.  We debated dipping into our cash reserve and making a low-ball offer and then financing the balance with the intent of paying it off in full before hitting the road.  That was our plan.

We arrived at the dealership and made an offer.  We told the salesman we would pay the sticker price “Out the Door”  after tax, title, license.  Our salesman took the offer into his manager’s office (the typical sales maneuver), then returned and congratulated us on the purchase of our new 5th wheel.  We in-house financed the balance for a ridiculously long  term with an insignificant monthly payment.  

We intend to pay the balance in full within the next few months.

Its pretty frightening how simple it is to purchase a RV!

That’s it! We own a 2006, 31′ Chaparral by Coachman.  NOW WHAT?

Did I mention we dont have a truck to pull it yet?

Stay tuned for updates!

Please let us know you thoughts in the comment section below!