Saturday, June 12, 2010

Biggest Expense Items in Year 1-

I want to document some of the things that cost a lot of money so I can compare them to spending in year 2 and see if my new estimates are reasonable.  Since we did not retire in an independently wealthy status, this analysis gives us more piece of mind as we try to anticipate what may be some larger expenses in year two.

It is a bit long, but here it is month by month beginning in May, the month we moved out of our house and into the Roadrunner:

May 2009: (before we actually started full-timing but in preparation for it)
- $1197 (Blue Ox base plate tow package  and rear hitch for the Honda)
- $377 (one time cost of Autonet Mobile Internet router)
- $1500 (seven year warranty for new Honda)
- $103.42 (folding BBQ grill for Roadrunner)

June 2009:
- $176.00 (Folding ladder, camping tables)

July 2009:
- $94.79 (household items for Adam's new place after he moved to Michigan)
- $258.47 (RV maintenance including windshield wipers, a/c and electrical troubleshooting)

August 2009:
- $129.39 (RV maintenance; DVD and keyless door repair)
- $117.98 (check out air bag inflate issue at Freightliner repair shop)
- $280.87 (Canon camera replacement)
- $119.50 (Ferry ride and tickets to Mackinaw Island)
- $229.06 (Electrical issue with kitchen plug repaired)

September 2009:
- $478 (registration for car and RV in South Dakota)

October 2009:
- $735 (Pressure Pro Tire Pressure Monitoring System)
- $276 (RV maintenance incl. generator maintenance, chassis lube, air cleaner)

November 2009:
- $397.50 (Generator lube and maintenance)
- $103.64 (Fuel pump repair)
- $108.24 (Air Compressor)
- $128.28 (hard drive crash repair and data recovery)
- $100.00 (teeth cleaned in Mexico)
- $149.80 (prescriptions filled in Mexico) [better prices at WalMart]
- $371.08 (RV maintenance)

December 2009:
- $157.87 (RV Freightliner yearly maintenance at Bay Diesel)
- $350.00 (couch removed and custom credenza for the Roadrunner)
- $518.94 (recliner for the Roadrunner)
- $1009.03 (Red Bay factory work incl. bodywork, awning repair, keyless door entry, towable tail lights repair)
- 134.44 (light socket replacement in Honda brake light)

January 2010:
- $119.88 (external hard drive)
- $87.72 (wood, hinges and supplies for custom computer table for Roadrunner)
- $763.15 (RV upgrades: SeeLevel Gauge, BR ceiling fan, kitchen counter light)

February 2010:
- $118.90 (External hard drive for Apple)
- $90.83 (small upright vacuum for Roadrunner)

March 2010:
- $455.80 (H&R Block income tax prep)
- $300.00 (Pam medical in Galveston)
- $1050.90 (Airline tickets Adam & Meghan's wedding)
- $122.34 (car rental and airport parking)
- $1065.00 (Blue Ox Patriot braking system; bought it in Jan, finally shipped in March)

April 2010:
- $679.55 (new tires for Honda)
- $134.61 (4" drop down hitch for towing car)
- $89.95 (Honda wheel alignment and cable feed through firewall for Blue Ox Patriot aux braking system)

May 2010:
- $212.41 (Pathfinder maintenance)

This may not be all of the medical bills yet, but I have listed the doctor's visits and ones I have seen so far.  There are more and I will update my notes when I get them.

Not sure I have any monumental conclusions to offer, but I wanted to highlight some things that are going to be useful both to us and maybe some of you that are thinking about the cost of full-timing for the first year.

I have previously posted our expenses vs budget items for Year 1; this is a look at some of the unanticipated costs.  Hopefully you find it interesting and / or useful!

Thanks for joining us today on the Roadrunner Chronicles!  Keep those comments and Followers coming!!


  1. Howdy
    I am taking a break from yard work and read your blog. I wish my record keeping was as good as yours, I am trying.
    I just paid my stick & brick insurance $ 1429.00 and I noticed you did not list it as a big expense for RV & Car. Is it really cheap or just not on the list yet? You picked a good state to sit out Summer. Out West are the Warren sand dunes and the UP is a fun place to explore. I like Michigan in the Summer. Keep having fun.

  2. Good catch - my RV insurance for the year was $1056.00 for year 1

  3. Great review. Would love to see some pics of the desk / area you did. That is on our to do list but all the cost for custom work is higher that we want to pay for right now.
    Because we have our son's wedding in Hawaii in November, this year has changed to being all about the money we can make. We may go to Amazon after leaving Texas. Not sure yet. Keep up the good reviews. Love to see what everyone saves and spends.
    Gerri and Art

  4. Nice of you to show some of the *extra* things that pop up that are above and beyond the normal budget when fulltiming.

    Karen and Steve
    (Our Blog) RVing: Small House... BIG Backyard