Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Why are we doing this?

Great Question!
  • It is compelling and the idea won't go away
  • It excites us--energizes us
  • We want to spend time on the more meaningful things of life
  • At this stage of our life it is another great adventure together we can share.
  • We want to spend more time with each other
  • We think we have figured out a way to afford it
  • It like the idea it forces us to downsize, get rid of stuff and live frugally
  • We keep talking about simplifying our lives--this will help us do it
  • There is no time like the present
  • We are getting older. Waiting a few years won't make it easier
  • We want to get more healthy and get outdoors
  • We want to see friends, make friends and more of this great country
  • This gives us new opportunities of volunteer: Habitat for Humanity, Youth Camps
  • We love to camp, always have
  • We love meeting people
  • We can't figure out where we want to live...this way we can live a lot of places
  • Most that are doing this say, "We wished we had done this sooner"

Saturday, February 23, 2008

RV Shows and what we do at them

We have been to three RV shows in the last couple of months. One was in Chantilly, VA (5 minutes from our house); one was in
Richmond, VA (about 90 minutes away) and the most recent one was near Baltimore (little more than an hour away.)
We were planning on seeing the show near Reading PA this weekend but didn't want to risk traveling in the snow and ice since we are having storms.

We found the RV shows to be very similar:
- they were held in a large building or set of 2-3 buildings (Expo Center, Fairgrounds buildings)
- they had all kinds of RVs (Class A, Class C, 5th wheels, travel trailers, pop-up campers, etc)
- there were three basic kinds of displays (rigs, accessories and supplies, and RV campground info)
- we were able to meet very very friendly people who were wannabes (like us) or had a lot of RV/camping experience

We decided on a gameplan for the show. I researched what dealers and companies were going to be there. I looked up any information I could find about what type of RV the dealer had (Class A, 5th wheel) etc. I compared the 5th wheel models to my 'RV Comparison Guide' . Then I highlighted the dealers we wanted to talk to and noted the 5th wheels we wanted to see.
One of the fun things is to find an RV we are interested in and spend some time talking with the sales person about it.
We were able to do that with the Rupars from Four Seasons RV near Hagerstown MD. We are interested in the Carriage Carri-Lite.
They were great! They spend 30 minutes just talking to us and sharing their experience. We learned more from them than we could in a week of research. Very nice couple.

We also talked with another gentleman about RV storage and how few people in our area know it that if you park/store an RV in Prince William county, you don't have to pay property tax. This is significant because the tax comes up every year and can be thousands of dollars on a $150K RV!
We also spent time and learned about generators. A good option may be to buy two smaller 13v generators and link them together to make a 30v generator instead of buying one larger, less mobile 150lb 26v generator.

We enjoy going to the RV shows and talking with folks. We are learning a lot. We are finding now we are becoming a little more knowledgeable in a number of areas, so now we are getting dangerous... :)

The plan is shaping up for us to buy after we sell our home. We intend to start trying to do that in about a year. Plenty of time for more RV shows.