Full-time RV Living Launch Budget Update – 2017 Week 3

Full-time RV living can be expensive to get started if you let it. It has been a while so I figured that it was time for me to update our full-time RV living budget for you. We’ve made some changes to things from when I posted our original full-time travel launch budgetwe’ve had a savings setback and we’ve finally started really purging our things! December and January were very busy for us as a family, but I’m loving it!

Thinking of making the leap to full-time RV living? We are and we're doing it debt free! We've updated our launch budget! Check out the updates and see exactly where we are right now!

When we first did our launch budget, we were trying to account for every single expense that we could even remotely have. Now, months later, we’ve adjusted those expenses a bit. It has taken research and time for it to slowly come down, but it has come down quite a bit. I’m currently a bit of a planner so to me, it makes sense to try and account for everything. With that said, I’m trying to learn to let go a little bit and frankly, to not be quite so anal about everything. That meant that I needed to really re-think what it would take for us to launch. Once I did that, I was able to ease things considerably.

Full-time RV Living Launch Budget Update

Savings wise, we were doing fantastic. We were adding around $500/mo to our fund and then December hit. My Mom currently is in a nursing home in Central Ohio and if I were to be honest with you, she isn’t going to be around much longer. She has a whole slew of health issues and is permanently bedridden. For me and I’m sure for you too, family comes first. It had been three years since Emma or I had seen her and both of us needed to spend time with her in case she passed soon. So, as a family, we decided to use our launch fund to go home for a visit.

       My  Mom – Linda

We had a great visit with her and the rest of my family with one exception, but this isn’t the place to go into that. Emma got to spend some much needed time with the cousins that she is really close to. They have been great friends since they were little so it was awesome to see them together again and just as close as they were when they were little.

My Emma (bottom left) and her cousin, M.

I got to visit with my Aunt and Uncle. They took Emma and I in when we were homeless and helped me get onto my feet so they’re incredibly important people to me a well as some old friends that I hadn’t seen in years.

Friends since age 14.

So all in all, while we depleted our launch savings, it was totally worth it.

Which brings us to this update! Since we’ve started purging so heavily now, I thought that you might enjoy an update more often so I am hoping to do these full-time rv living budget updates once a week where I track how our savings are doing and where we currently are in our planning stages.

First though, our updated launch budget. Our original launch budget looked like this:

  • Current Loans – $13,000
  • Tow Vehicle – $15,000
  • RV – $20,000
  • Health Insurance Fund – $2,000
  • Vehicle Insurance – $3600
  • Storage Unit (Yearly) – $1200
  • Memberships – $2,000
  • Emergency Fund – $10,000
  • Misc. Fees & Entertainment – $5,000

Total Launch Budget – $71,800

With a little bit of research though, we’ve found that we can buy a quality, used RV for much less in our area. Sure, we may have to do some DIY work to make it pretty, but they’re in good condition mechanically and structurally which makes them perfect for us. This allows us to drop our RV costs to $10,000. The same goes with our tow vehicle. We are currently looking at a GMC Yukon and in our area, I can buy a used one that is mechanically sound for around $7,000.

I also realized that the money for our current vehicle loan will come from selling the car. The car loan is $9,900 of what we had labeled current loans meaning that we can drop our loan payment to only my student loans. This monthly payment is low enough that I feel as if we are safe cutting it from our launch budget entirely and paying it down quickly out of our monthly income instead as we have been. I also think that while we need an emergency fund from the start, we don’t need a full $10,000 emergency fund. Dropping that amount will lower our total launch costs. The same can be said for our misc fees & entertainment costs.

Our new launch budget looks like this:


  • Tow Vehicle – $7,000
  • RV – $10,000
  • Health Insurance Fund – $2,000
  • Vehicle Insurance – $3600
  • Storage Unit (Yearly) – $1200 (Yes, we could ditch this but we have heirloom furniture that no one else can take. We will not be getting rid of it.)
  • Memberships – $2,000
  • Emergency Fund – $5,000
  • Misc. Fees & Entertainment – $2500

Total Updated Launch Budget – $33,300

That is a far cry from the $71,800 ($38,500 less actually) that we had projected before, but it is still a lot of money. We have a long way to go, but we’re working hard to make it happen! This week we have really started clearing things out to help rebuild the fund! In just 3 days we have added $405 back to our launch fund! We’ve sold books, a bookshelf, an electric keyboard (piano) that no one played and quite a few smaller items that went quickly.

Whoo hoo! It doesn’t get much better than that! Clearing out clutter and making money! We still have so much stuff that I’m very optimistic at how much money it will bring in. A lot of what we have is left over from when we were working Amazon FBA full time. We no longer are so we still have all of this inventory to get rid of. On top of that, there’s all of our personal possessions that need to go too if they’re not going with us in the RV or aren’t family heirlooms.

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Stacy Barr is the face and brain behind the frugal living and lifestyle blog Six Dollar Family. A true gypsy soul, her newest blog, Unsettled Hearts, chronicles the journey of her family to become full-time travelers. By the age of 30, Stacy had overcome an alcohol addiction, a drug addiction, divorce, survived domestic violence and had built a life for herself and her daughter after spending 10 months in a homeless shelter. Stacy is passionate about homeless advocacy and addiction education.  Her first book, also called Six Dollar Family is available on Amazon.

Click here to learn how I made over $100,000 blogging in 2016!
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