Whether you’re just starting out or you’re ready to make a change later in life, RVers of all levels of enthusiasm and financial ability can afford the perks the RV lifestyle provides.

Have you been thinking about owning an RV? When you think of an RV, what comes to mind? A way to get away occasionally? An escape from the world? A house on wheels? Hopefully, “out of reach” doesn’t. Though RVs are considered luxury items, it depends on how you intend to use your RV to make your choice to own – and your investment – worthwhile.

Look at your current budget.  

Every household has an operating budget and a spending budget to cover utilities, groceries, and luxury purchases. Is there room in your current budget to afford an extra payment, plus the funds to support the travels? Can you make adjustments to your current spending or utilities to make RV ownership attainable? For instance, you may not need a $230 Verizon plan for data and smartphones. You could do with a $100 plan, perhaps from another provider and with a simpler phone.

Maybe you’re already an RV owner and have been for many years. Now the thought has entered your mind: full-timing. Instead of a primary dwelling on land, make your RV your primary dwelling, perhaps with a much smaller, stationary homestead elsewhere that is smaller than your current stationary home. Then, compare your current budget and expenses with a projected monthly budget and expenses for a full-time RV lifestyle: loans, insurance, utilities, groceries, etc. Utilities may be one area where you’ll see differences: many RV parks and resorts have partial or full hookups for electric, water, and sewage, with the price of usage rolled into their rates. However, if you’re planning to stay in one place for a long time – all season – then you may need to pay your own electric usage. But, there’s a lot less square footage in your RV than your typical stationary home so a little can go a long way!

Look at the market.

We’ve done articles on how to choose a travel trailer and camper van. Each of these articles offers direction as to what to consider when contemplating a purchase of one of these types of RVs. These questions also help with choosing a Class A, Class B, or Class C motorhome, too. We approach topics such as, how often do you intend to use your RV? Do you already have a tow vehicle that can handle the RV you’re considering? What amenities are must-haves and which ones can you do without? Think about these things and then research the market to see what that might cost you. If it’s too high, then you’ll need to reconsider your wish list so that you better fit your budget. Be realistic, and take your time researching all the options.

Understand other ways in which you can save money.

There are plenty of shortcuts you can take to make life affordable once you own and travel or live in an RV. For instance, shopping for food only when needed and what space allows can help you cut down your grocery bill. Maybe you could switch to LED lights. In addition, there are typically tax breaks for RV owners; speak with a tax professional to see what breaks you might be eligible for. Belonging to clubs can also provide you with useful discounts. Plus, think of the money you’ll save from not staying in hotels or renting an RV, if you’re a frequent enough traveler (according to an article inTime)! Use the Internet to search for more tips online, or ask other RVers for ideas. These can help you factor your budget prior to making any changes to your lifestyle.

Earn money on the go.

Many of today’s professions allow for remote access so you don’t need to be in the office to make a living. You can work from your RV no matter where you are. You may be able to find a seasonal or part time job near a location you’re staying, if you’re staying for some time. You don’t need to retire to enjoy life in an RV!

Are you interested in a Class A or a pop-up trailer? Will your RV be used every weekend of the season or just for the occasional trip? Are you ready to simplify and want to work on the road or about to retire and want a life of adventure and flexibility? Depending on your answers, you can find an RV to fit your needs and budget, so that the dream of RV ownership becomes a reality.