Pros and Cons of Fulltiming

Nesting Zombie

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Jump in your Van, Meet up and spend a few weeks Actually Traveling around Following a Full time Livaboard, or Frequent experienced Motor homer in your vehicle Both in Winter then again in Summer. You will pick up LOADS of tips and see how everyday life is or can be, Both GOOD & the NOT so good. Kinda 'Try before you Buy' into the life sort of deal.
Don't get me wrong, Going to meets can be GREAT, But can be limited in showing what the real everyday lifestyle is like.
 
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trixie88

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Jump in your Van, Meet up and spend a few weeks Actually Traveling around Following a Full time Livaboard, or Frequent experienced Motor homer in your vehicle Both in Winter then again in Summer. You will pick up LOADS of tips and see how everyday life is or can be, Both GOOD & the NOT so good. Kinda 'Try before you Buy' into the life sort of deal.
Don't get me wrong, Going to meets can be GREAT, But can be limited in showing what the real everyday lifestyle is like.

Afraid its a bit too late in the day now, missed the boat a good few years ago (so to speak)... i have to rely on my rose coloured specs now,,,,lol, I do enjoy the meets tho....enjoy your great lifestyle
 

RoadTrek Boy

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trixie88, even on a day like today (overcast, grey and raining) the views can be stunning, as long as you're warm and cosy. I think it's only when your in an exposed position and blowing a force 9 gale it can take the gloss off. (but even a gale can be invigorating) given the choice I know where I would rather be, and it's not bricks and mortar.. It depends a lot on your health of course.
 

trixie88

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trixie88, even on a day like today (overcast, grey and raining) the views can be stunning, as long as you're warm and cosy. I think it's only when your in an exposed position and blowing a force 9 gale it can take the gloss off. (but even a gale can be invigorating) given the choice I know where I would rather be, and it's not bricks and mortar.. It depends a lot on your health of course.

Thats one of the problems the big H ..../// agree with you regarding rain etc, can be very comforting when your tucked upsnug and warm hearing the rain on the van roof...... not a fan of the gale force winds tho, seen that damage it can cause.....Once in a building when it ripped the roof back. would have to find a safe haven....lets hope all you fulltimers dont encounter too many storms this winter. enjoy your freedom and life style
 

channa

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Thats one of the problems the big H ..../// agree with you regarding rain etc, can be very comforting when your tucked upsnug and warm hearing the rain on the van roof...... not a fan of the gale force winds tho, seen that damage it can cause.....Once in a building when it ripped the roof back. would have to find a safe haven....lets hope all you fulltimers dont encounter too many storms this winter. enjoy your freedom and life style


For me though I have stated the cons because part of the original question.

The pros far outweigh the cons, You just need to be prepared, and you can be as snug as a bug in a rug.

Winter can still be fun, it is just a case of re adjusting the lifestyle a little bit. Decent sleeping bag, duvet goes a long way.

As for gales , Let me share a story and something quite personal.

I was in Bouardeville on the Ile d' Oleron and spotted a little yacht for sale same value " ish "as the motorhome. I got it into my head how great would it be to sail back to Scarborough on that ? Of course I am totally oblivious to the fact I can't sail, I can navigate but that's about all.

Anyway it just sent my mind racing. In the van when I did get storms and I was rockin in the manger, I often imagined I was on that boat. No 75 ft waves crashing over the van ...so a bit of wind,

For me part of the lifestyle it allows you to go where you want in your head even when parked on the drive at home...It is therapeutic.

Would I full time again ? circumstances were right 100 percent absolutely

Channa
 

trixie88

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certainly know what you mean in your head you can go where you want, channa. My imagination takes me to some fine places///lol....
 
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eddyt

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Can I just say how helpful and informative this thread is.
I am retired and possibly considering full timing.

Having lived for a number of years in Spain, albeit bricks and mortar whilst just having a static caravan (no post permitted) in the UK, I am aware of some of the problems. Having a postal address for Doctors or Dentist on NHS in the UK being one.

I have only had a motorhome for a few months and gather a lot of help is available via these forums just for the asking.

Thanks again for all on this subject. I may or may not ever take up full timing but it sounds worth a try from what some of you are saying, if my situation changes and I need an escape!!
hi
a lot of static caravan sites which are non residentional now need proof of
council tax adress to stay on site.
 

iampatman

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This is a really good thread. I'll add our current lifestyle and experiences too.

We've only had the motorhome for three and a half years or so. We bought it in the spring of 2013 and had a couple of run outs in the UK and then when I finished work on a Friday in October we were off through the Chunnel on the Monday. Down through France and Spain and then back home for Christmas. Back down to France for the New Year and across to Spain and then over to Morocco. Back home again and after a couple of months back down to Spain and then across to Greece overland. By then we really had the bug.

Then we settled into a pattern, home for summer then travelling slowly down to Spain for winter then across to Greece for spring and then back home again for summer. So we park up on one campsite in Spain for five months or so and then travel around using aires/stellplatz/sostas/wild camping. We find now that we are away in the van for at least ten months each year and we love it. We miss the kids and grandkids, probably more than they miss us, but we keep in touch through facetime/viber etc...

Initially we had family living in our house while we were away but that didn't work out too well so when we went home this year in the summer we cleared everything out, redecorated and put the property up to let through a letting agency. We've got tenants in and so far so good. We're lucky insofar as my sister-in-law who lives a mile or so from us has given us a bedroom and lounge in her house for when we are home. So we have a UK address for the bank/credit cards/doctors/dentists/govt agencies/van insurance etc...and a base back in West Yorkshire.

But the more we do this we find there are more and more places to see! We've been inspired by other folks blogs and stories and so after we've been home for a few weeks in May/June '17 and serviced and MOT'd the van our next trip is up to Scandinavia next summer and then a slow drift back down to Spain again for the winter.

We'd talked about this kind of lifestyle before we both finished work and it was a toss up between a motorhome and an extended grand tour of the far East and south east Asia. We decided we were too old for the backpacking lark and this is the best decision we ever made. We thought at first that we would make the odd trip in the van for a couple of months at a time but this lifestyle has sucked us in!

We're not wealthy by any means but we find we can fund this lifestyle through our pensions and have a better quality of life than we could back in England. Plus we get to meet so many interesting folk as we travel around,both motorhomers and locals, not to mention the privilege of visiting beautiful places. Its not for everyone I'm sure and personal finances dictate what you can and can't do and I appreciate that. But whilst we are still fit and healthy (fingers crossed eh?) it suits us and I'd recommend the lifestyle to anyone.

Pat
 

iampatman

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Sorry, I should have mentioned one other very important thing that inspired us. This forum! I've had so much advice, help, assistance and inspiration from folk on here since I joined and without it I don't know if we would have half as much fun or even known what we were doing on occasions.

I still consider myself a newbie but folk on here helped to give us the confidence to do what we are doing in so many ways. I'm not going to mention folk by name but you know who you are and I can't thank you enough. At the same time I'll take this opportunity to apologise to the folk I've been a bit rude to over the last couple of years. My New Years resolution is not to post when I've had a drink!

Pat
 

Steve000

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Your article Pat is certainly inspiring another generation, me included. You certainly got around, drifting from Spain to Greece and then back to the UK.
Food for thought!!
 

channa

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Sorry, I should have mentioned one other very important thing that inspired us. This forum! I've had so much advice, help, assistance and inspiration from folk on here since I joined and without it I don't know if we would have half as much fun or even known what we were doing on occasions.

I still consider myself a newbie but folk on here helped to give us the confidence to do what we are doing in so many ways. I'm not going to mention folk by name but you know who you are and I can't thank you enough. At the same time I'll take this opportunity to apologise to the folk I've been a bit rude to over the last couple of years. My New Years resolution is not to post when I've had a drink!

Pat


Good for you, that you are enjoying your new found life .

I personally think you discover part of yourself too. The experience I found very profound on re shaping some of my thoughts. There are the occasional cons but you still grow as a person, Meeting new folk the occasional adverse situation keeps us on our toes and exposes us to others lifes we wouldn't otherwise see and I think that is a priviledge

Our Roman ancestors were spot on other than undefloor heating...Carpe Diem ...seize the moment.

I look at my Gran for example she died 1977 .She never had the opportunity to do the things I have managed so far. So sad she could never make the journey. So a famous sports company tell us ....Nike .just do it

Channa
 

Stanski

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This is a really good thread. I'll add our current lifestyle and experiences too......
.....
Its not for everyone I'm sure and personal finances dictate what you can and can't do and I appreciate that. But whilst we are still fit and healthy (fingers crossed eh?) it suits us and I'd recommend the lifestyle to anyone.
....
I should have mentioned one other very important thing that inspired us. This forum! I've had so much advice, help, assistance and inspiration from folk on here since I joined and without it I don't know if we would have half as much fun or even known what we were doing on occasions.

I still consider myself a newbie but folk on here helped to give us the confidence to do what we are doing in so many ways. I'm not going to mention folk by name but you know who you are and I can't thank you enough. ......

Pat

Not certain if trying to reduce the text you wrote Pat works but on reading what you had written it resonated with me, as does Nesting Zombies' comments earlier for different reasons.

Pat:- Your annual method of travelling I sense is like a few others and near to what I (we) would like to achieve. I also feel your just ahead of us on the "retirement timeline" with us seeking earlier retirement than the norm and have been semi-practising it and enjoyed similar excursions to those you have mentioned.

Nesting Zombie:- You've portrayed to me a picture of a person who has possibly had experiences serving for our country in some form, having the bravado to continue seeking challenges, with confidence in overcoming most that you meet.

Future Challenges
As I am nearing the big challenge of actually retiring (subject to possible short-term contracts - ho ho) here are the pertinent challenges I feel the need to overcome:
- small task of maintaining strong mental composure to do it, (after 40+ yrs earning to not do it is uncomfortable)
- the mental frailty of how to manage our health (not at all bad but requires tlc),
- constant massaging, with refining our choices, on a daily basis to balance the budget (not easy and yet to achieve a status quo yet)
- deciding how to persue and expand our enjoyment of travel beyond Europe. (while we are still physically mobile the bucket list is growing)

The decision to end full-time employment to try to enjoy life a different way was taken five years ago with a target of 8 years to achieve full unemployment/retirement.

What I have become more aware of is that confidence is a huge element to this, and it is this that seeks to distort my mental mindset. So this leads me to the next part of this thought (thread).

Historic and Future Explorers
The intrepid historic explorers of the WC community who started adventures in the 80's, possibly earlier, have certainly offered much inspiration for me to also convince/persuade SWMBO to consider an alternative life adventure.

These historic members are those who deserve a well deserved shout out of: "THANK YOU from STANSKI".

There are recent members also who I have taken information from and have also sought advice and again a deserved shout out to you.

Conclusion
I am beginning to feel vulnerable for more than one reason.

On "fulltiming" we have realised that it is unlikely to be us as we need the security of a base, also 3 months away is currently our limit.

On "old age" the worry of being able to cope with situations is possibly why I champion the "Support Network" idea as I become more concerned about my ability to solve or remedy the problem when away from home.

On "health" the ability to manage it correctly.

On "budget", have we started too early in life to constrain ourselves so causing heartache in the future.

Normally I dont do kinesthetic (touchy - feely) but on reading some of the messages above the feeling of "Adventure and Exploration" is why I chose to buy a motorhome 4 yrs 9months ago.

Summary
I have no doubt that others will have considered and experienced all of the above topics and more - so it is to those who have gone through the various experiences outlined:

What would you have done differently?

What do you worry about now about your future?
 

Nesting Zombie

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Hi ya Stanski,
What a Lovely & Honest Post.
I would say That although OBVIOUSLY its sensible that we all have to Prepare as we can for things, Don't 'OVER THINK' the 'WHAT IF' scenario's. If I did that I'm sure that I could have come up with dozens of reasons why NOT to try something. & The chances are I would now be in a room somewhere in a high winged chair with a blanket over my knees Dribbling into my bowl of Prunes while playing Bingo. I TOTALLY get the work thing though, My working life started at 16 (Yep your correct) & then went on in several guise's until 2002 when I gave up Mainstream Fulltime work, Met my (Then) Partner who was Disabled from a young age Moved her on to My Boat & soon after went on a Life Break for 9 years Cruising the Coasts & Inland Waterways of The UK, France, Spain, Portugal, Norway & the Med as Full Time Livaboards !. Only Stopping some 3ish years ago when The relationship ended (I FXXXING HATE FACEBOOK !) Over the next year I Then had to sell my boat, My Beloved Black Labrador Died just before Fathers day at the age of 14, No Job, No Money, No Home, No Future, No Wife & No Soul Mate & Confidant in my Faithfull Charlie, Bold, Obese & in my 50s feeling 70s, The whole thing now leaving me with a SEVEAR case of Psoriasis & A Donut Fetish !. Enter The Nest & The remnants of a forgotten Smile.
Life has a way of just Happening, SO Just Live it. There is Plenty of time for Prunes & Bingo, But Have the Life memories to go with them. The weather worn Line creased Smiling faces of the Old are often Retired People that have 'LIVED'

To answer your questions
What would I have done differently ?.
I Should have stayed in my first Job,,,,I Truly loved it, & apparently I was quite good at it. But would probably be Dead Now.

What do I worry about in my future ?
Very little in fact, I will just deal with it as my future happens, I am CERTANLY NOT going to spend my Present worrying about my Future.

I wish you all the VERY best of luck in you achieving your lifestyle choices.
 
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Deleted member 9849

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I think this is a question that most motorhome owners ask themselves at some point when they have the vehicle to be able to do it-could I/we full time?I certainly have and what an excellent thread this has been for anyone considering living in their vehicle.It's been interesting hearing the stories and information from full timers who are actually doing it.I'm firmly in the ''long termers''camp as are quite a few others.I need to have a home in the UK as a bolt hole in case of any problems.

I understand that some full timers haven't had much choice because of varying reasons-divorce,financial etc....,most of them seem to be managing fine.I also realise that it is a chosen lifestyle by some that are living the dream and enjoying the freedom.I personally know of 2 former full timers that are now in bricks and mortar for various reasons.To redress the balance of this thread it would be useful if any ex full timers would comment as well.
 

Flyboy

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couldn't say it better myself

Hi Gang,
Well, I think there seems to be differing views on what 'Full Timing' actually is, & of course all of them could be right !.
I have 'The Nest' this is my ONLY Home & Transport. I DONT have alternative Vehicles, House or Accommodations. I move to a different location or Park up on average every other day, sometimes its only say a kilometre or so, Sometimes its a few miles, On occasions Much more it really does depend on the Geographical area that I find myself exploring at the time, & the Park ups that are available to me.
I am not going to even think about listing the Pro s, as I could HONESTLY fill pages, Most days bring brings new Knowledge, People, Places & Life experience's that I simply wouldn't of had if it wasn't for my lifestyle choice. So the PROs almost have expediential Growth, Incomparable in my limited experience to a few 'Important Priority's & General Inconvenience's' rather than Con s so will outline a few I have come across.

'The Nests' Maintenance & wellbeing.
I treat this as a Symbiotic relationship. I Do what I can for the Nest, The Nest takes Care of me. This can cost TIME & MONEY. & last year I Chose to book into a B&B for a week or so in order for The Nest to have Cam Belt & Aux Belts changed, a FULL Engine Service with Full Running Gear Check, All Fluid & Grease levels topped up, 7 New tyers, & MOT done. Yep cost me approx £2000 including the B&B. Worth every penny. & thankfully NO problems or issues since.

Park ups.
I often make do in park ups that Lorries use, sometimes Good, Sometimes not so good. But as I Move regularly Easy to put up with if needs be.

Rubbish N Toilet empting.
Never had a Problem with the Disposal of either, But Very conscious of BOTH, & the semi frequent 15-20 day Pit stops at a site Often dictate my route. More and more recently though I just POP in to use the facility's for a few quid (Cash) rather than actually stay for the night.

Water.
Have Never Run Dry, But Obviously its Always on my mind, I carry approx. 100lts that I top up at the Pit Stops, & my Portable Containers have a Permanent Home in my Ruck Sack that goes with me when out n about.

Washing.
I've got a washing machine that I use little & Often as my Water supply allows, it makes the Drying SO much easier & Often just takes overnight for the everyday things.
As for my bedding & Towels I try & do this at one of the Pit Stop overnight stays because of the massive amount of water required, I Have 3 sets of Bedding, & change them at approx 10 days ish intervals. so I find every other Pit stop is a BIG wash day. My Washing machine only takes 1 Duvet cover & 1 Pillow case at a time But only takes approx 30 mins to do per cycle. so no issue, its just a discipline.

Power.
Both 230v & 12v have never been an issue for me, as,,,,Well I Move !. & maybe Once In-between my OVERNIGHT Pit Stops I find a suitable place to run my genny for an hr while I do my washing. So Easy.

So I think the key to making the 'Cons' more easily handled is, Awareness, Routine & Discipline.
Enjoy
spot on its not about moving all over the place in a mad rush it's having the freedom to choose when and where you move, Problems only occur because your not prepared for them i don't use a solar panel not found the need yet it use candle light most of the time I limit the use of the TV now I have one at this moment i live within a 25 radius of Bude this cuts your fuel costs down greatly mine has gone from £350 to £30 a month. To quote from the above ((Awareness, Routine & Discipline.)) This is spot on Ps love to answer this in more detail but on my sixth pint of Doom Bar and my English isn't very good anyway.
 
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Deadsfo

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love this forum

just read every post really enjoyed it ,cant see myself full timing for various reasons but can still read the posts and dream
 

n brown

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let's talk about houses,and the hold they have on people. you're expected to go into debt for most of your life to get one. as soon as you get one you take on the massive responsibility of keeping it in good nick,constantly maintaining,repairing and worrying about it.

living in a van, your overheads are massively reduced, cleaning,maintaining and generally looking after your tin home takes a fraction of the time, and if the worst comes to the worst, replacing it is comparatively affordable
 

Deleted member 9849

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let's talk about houses,and the hold they have on people. you're expected to go into debt for most of your life to get one. as soon as you get one you take on the massive responsibility of keeping it in good nick,constantly maintaining,repairing and worrying about it.

living in a van, your overheads are massively reduced, cleaning,maintaining and generally looking after your tin home takes a fraction of the time, and if the worst comes to the worst, replacing it is comparatively affordable

Very true,it's much cheaper to maintain a motorhome than a house,I don't constantly worry about it though.
Another viewpoint is that some of us may want to leave property to our children.
 

Stanski

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let's talk about houses,and the hold they have on people. you're expected to go into debt for most of your life to get one. as soon as you get one you take on the massive responsibility of keeping it in good nick,constantly maintaining,repairing and worrying about it. ...

I do enjoy your comments and your probably right for 98.9% of home owners - but for me a significant portion of time is encouraging SWMBO that the refurbishment or repair that she would like happen would reduce our chance to travel as finances are limited.

25 yrs ago I started an extension (1992) because I wanted the experience - still havent got all the third fix sorted, and have many friends who enjoy reminding me of my slow progress over a pint.

House Maintenance is a necessary evil as you imply and for me the torment is often at the most inconvenient time - a recent example has been this month: To find the cause for a leaking shower/bath. Initial sensible (so I thought) solution was to use bath sealant which reduced the flow, but not all, so now a bit of duct tape and bubble wrap keeps the water off the offending area until another day when I can work out the irritating cause and identify a better solution. For me vehicle maintenance always has higher priority and so the house is lacking attention a tad.
 

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