Boyfriend and I are moving from my hometown to Oregon. I’m 24 and have never lived anywhere else but here, and BF is 30 and has been in the military for the last 8 years so he has moved quite a lot. He will be getting out of the army, and we have decided on Oregon for our home. We have decided that, while we get on our feet, we are going to live in a 32 ft RV in an RV park for six months. This will save us money because a) RV payment + RV lot fee = ~525 per month, compared to 1000 per month or higher for renting a house and b) even if we get really good jobs with good income, paying 525 for living expenses out of our salaries we expect to get will allow us to put a lot into savings for a home that we love and put a good down payment on it.
We are currently three and a half weeks away from the drive with all of our stuff. We have about 90% of our things packed, leaving just enough to live off of for three weeks. We are going to get a storage unit for all of our stuff until we get the moving truck and load it up, and then we will drive to Nevada to get the camper (we bought it from BF’s mom so we got a great deal on a basically new RV). We will drive halfway (about 8 hours), stay in a hotel for the night, finish the drive (another 8 or 9 hours), stay at her house for a night or maybe two, and then finish the drive to Oregon (about 10 hours).
Because I have never moved before, I’m very excited, but the closer we get to moving, the more scared I get. I know that we have everything planned except for having jobs lined up in Oregon, but I’m the biggest worry warrior ever. I’ve been looking everywhere for tips on living in an RV, but haven’t found much in the way of making everything easy.
So, I think I’m going to be what I wish others had done, and keep everyone up to date on what we find out and things we could have done better. So, here are the first couple of things that have helped us so far.
- We have been saving as much money as possible, thanks to living very frugally and basically not going out to do fun things. This is in case we don’t find jobs right away. However, BF will be getting terminal pay from his last day in the military (Oct 16) through the last day of his contract (Dec 14). So, if we do both get jobs, we have our savings and his terminal pay to carry us for at least a month (although our savings could probably support all our bills for three months). Due to his service in the military, we are doing a DIY move, which means we are moving all of our stuff and the army is paying him for the cost of moving him back to his hometown which is roughly the same distance as here to Oregon. That payment will cover the cost of the moving truck up to a load of 9000 pounds, and BF is confident that we will have money left over for all of the gas and food and the hotel night we need during the travel plus some extra once we’re at our destination.
- We started packing our things about a month ago, and BF still had a lot of his household stuff still in boxes in the garage because he was living with a roommate and only had one bedroom in the house. This has really helped on stress levels because, when you complete a big task by breaking it up into smaller tasks, the big task is not an issue anymore. However, the roommate has already moved out of the house which forces BF and me to get a storage unit while we’re still here and we will be staying with my parents for the last week before we move. We tried finding a storage unit for $1 for the first month like some of them advertise, but there is an admin fee and insurance, so we decided that waiting until Oct 1 is not practical because we need to be out of the house before then, and getting a unit for three weeks versus for two is not that much more expensive.
- Our camper is big. 32 feet, which is roughly 7000 pounds. BF has a Silverado 1500 4×4 with a towing package, but it might not be powerful enough to haul the camper. So we have taken that into account and have a backup plan to switch trucks with BF’s brother (his truck has a Cummins engine so as much as I hate dodge vehicles, I’m all for saving wear and tear on the Silverado) and then switch back at some point. But we are hoping that the Silverado can handle it.
- We have, of course, packed everything into Tough Boxes, which we labeled to make it easier to place things in the storage unit so we know exactly what we will need to go in the camper when we get to Oregon and which we need to go into storage up there. The more we can get into those Tough Boxes rather than in odd and assorted shapes and sizes, the easier it is to fill the storage unit and moving truck because squares and rectangles the same size are so much easier to play Tetris with than random items outside of random boxes we acquired. We have also been trying to keep track of weight so BF can report it to the army in order to get paid, but when you’re focused on moving things and organizing them into neat boxes and stacks, it is difficult to estimate weight. The most we can do is hope that we have enough weight to get paid enough to cover the costs of the whole move and keep ourselves from paying for anything out of pocket.
So far, that’s where we are in the start of our new journey. I am excited to keep reporting on this to help anyone in the future who might be thinking about choosing the path we chose to live in an RV while we’re getting stable in a new state.
Thanks for reading!