Working Fulltime & Van Living Fulltime (1 Viewer)

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Katrina Coe

Free Member
Feb 11, 2019
4
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Norwich
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Hello all,
I am getting my van in May (very exciting). I currently rent and have virtually no savings now. I work as a nurse In fulltime stable employment and have 7 years left till retirement. I have been considering living in the van in a bid to save a lot of dosh for said retirement. Is anyone else doing this or am I mad to be even considering it?
 
Feb 22, 2011
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Welcome to the forum.
Not mad but you need to research fulltiming.
Lots on here do it successfuly and I'm sure will be along soon to give advice.
Don't think I could do it though, I love being in my van but full time would not be my choice.
Good luck with your plans.
BTW it's worth becoming a member so you get unlimited posts and a mine of useful information.
 
Sep 21, 2007
1,666
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Kings Ripton, Huntingdon
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316
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Hi. We are going to full time hopefully later on this year. We are going to get a new van, but have a large van now which we can use to full time in until the new one comes along. Just a matter of getting the house sold now. Hopefully it will be on the market by late March/April. We will stay on local sites and carry on working part time until we have had enough, then it's time to travel. Looking forward to it - you only live once. (y)
 
Jun 30, 2011
7,384
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Barnard Castle, UK
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17,128
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Since 2007
So many questions to answer here, firstly what van are you getting, has it space/layout, payload, insurance, post, washing clothes, good shower, heating gas, battery power, solar, are you planning on staying on sites, cheap CL's, wilding.
 
Apr 27, 2008
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Somewhere to stay is important. Sites in UK are not cheap. CLs etc need to be a member of the relevant clubs (in theory anyway)
You will need full-time insurance which is expensive, and an address is pretty essential for many things. Could be a friend relative, or for some purposes a work address.

Check out all the costings, it may not be as cheap as it sounds. I don't know what van you're getting, but can you live in it for seven years. At least as a nurse there are showers at work you can use.

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pappajohn

LIFE MEMBER
Aug 26, 2007
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A lot of people try the full timing life...... And a lot of people give up.
As said.... Insurance, campsite fees, electric, gas (costs a lot more than a domestic supply), vehicle running costs and repair bills.... it all adds up over a year..... Multiply it by seven.
 
Jun 30, 2011
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A lot of people try the full timing life...... And a lot of people give up.
As said.... Insurance, campsite fees, electric, gas (costs a lot more than a domestic supply), vehicle running costs and repair bills.... it all adds up over a year..... Multiply it by seven.


Big difference is though people try to do it on a shoestring budget and you are right it costs, the OP will be working though so earning.
 

pappajohn

LIFE MEMBER
Aug 26, 2007
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Big difference is though people try to do it on a shoestring budget and you are right it costs, the OP will be working though so earning.
But it appears the OP is attempting a shoestring budget of a sort.
She is trying to save as much as possible in seven years to live on in retirement.
You can't save hard and live what could be called a normal life at the same time.
Saving a bit on rent but spending as much or more on camping fees, electric and gas isn't saving... Its alternative living.

This was brought up a few years ago on the RVOC forum and general consensus was you needed around £14000 pa for a normal existence full timing... More if you ate out and pubs a fair bit.
 
Jun 30, 2011
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But it appears the OP is attempting a shoestring budget of a sort.
She is trying to save as much as possible in seven years to live on in retirement.
You can't save hard and live what could be called a normal life at the same time.
Saving a bit on rent but spending as much or more on camping fees, electric and gas isn't saving... Its alternative living.

This was brought up a few years ago on the RVOC forum and general consensus was you needed around £14000 pa for a normal existence full timing... More if you ate out and pubs a fair bit.


Yes but you also eat out at pubs etc living in a house, we have done both, if you find a nice few cheapish CLs and are working full-time it is cheaper than house living. Obviously dependent on your rent/mortgage situation and how much that cost you.
We got some good deals working out at a fiver a night over a month, that's £150 for the month with hardly any bills, plenty of solar and X2 6 volt traction batteries.I
If you stay on caravan club main sites etc it will be a fortune
 
Jun 30, 2011
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No, some will most will not in our experience.

you have to chat to a ite owners, get to know them and they will do sometimes.it's

28 days was max stay when we were do it if but if you know them and get chatting can stay longer.
 
Jan 28, 2008
10,226
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1,353
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Renalt burstner
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7 years campers before that
even paying £30 a night isnt going to be anywhere as expensive as rent and coun cil tax water rates etc even adding £1k a year for fulltime insurance you have to be saving money
 
Sep 21, 2007
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Kings Ripton, Huntingdon
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316
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When we do it, we won't have a mortgage to worry about, and the 2 bed flat we plan to buy will give us some rental income, plus working part time the pair of us - I reckon we will be OK, and be able to save too. We live in hope.
 
Oct 15, 2012
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Hi and welcome to FUN, GOOD LUCK, hope you find somewhere cheap to stay. (y)

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Jim

Ringleader
Jul 19, 2007
37,041
135,459
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1
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Adria Panel Van.
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Since 1988
Hi Katrina, and welcome. Yes lots of people are doing exactly what you propose. It might cost a little more than you first imagine, but living in a van is MUCH cheaper than living in bricks and mortar, and especially so when you don't own a house. It certainly is a viable way of saving cash. There are people here with a vast experience of living full time in vans, we have members who have lived in vans their entire adult lives! So do come back for any specific questions and advice, meanwhile, best of luck. (y)
 

Shrimp

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May 27, 2015
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Good luck, go for it, ask as many questions as you wish, none of them will be as daft as you think.
Your biggest problem is finding 2 or 3 reasonably priced places to stay as you can only stay on one campsite/CL/CS for a limited time, you only have to be off for one or two nights then you can go back, you will have to belong to one or both of the Clubs to use a CL or CS.
Try to find someone that will give you a longer stay, maybe a farmer or friend with land. Some private sites will do a deal but it’s hard work finding them. Then of course you need transport to get to the place of work!
 
Apr 25, 2014
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We lived in our van fulltime for 3 years and it is doable. I think the biggest problem is finding somewhere to stay long term and from where you can get to work.
Some campsites, cls etc have time limits on how long you can stay.
I think the £14,000 a year costs are probably about right. You also have to consider the extra heating you'll need in the winter (gas and/or elec) as we found we needed to keep the heating on all day even when we were out.
You'll need a 'home' address to register for insurance, car tax etc.
Maybe you should go on housing association lists in the meantime. It can take years to get to the top of the list and it would be insurance in case you need it.
I don't know whether you are buying a new van but I seem to remember that people have been refused warranty work if they were living in them full time. The makers say they're not supposed to be lived in permanently.
 
Aug 27, 2009
19,794
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Hertfordshire
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40 years
Hello all,
I am getting my van in May (very exciting). I currently rent and have virtually no savings now. I work as a nurse In fulltime stable employment and have 7 years left till retirement. I have been considering living in the van in a bid to save a lot of dosh for said retirement. Is anyone else doing this or am I mad to be even considering it?
Hi Katrina and welcome....(y)
 
Sep 16, 2013
2,220
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Horncastle, UK
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28,132
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Since 2006
Firstly, welcome :)

My first question would be, have you stayed in a motorhome before?

Living in a van in great (we do) "if" you love living in a van. I'd say doing it just to save money could be a massive mistake. When we get asked why we live in a van it's always a "and we save money" answer. It wasn't the reason we chose too do it. I think this is really important.

We had motorhomes for 12 years before deciding to go fulltime. When we did decide, we spent a year planning everything we could, including refitting our van to suit the life we wanted.

I'm not trying to put you off, it's the best decision we have ever made, but having to empty toilets, fill up/empty water, bad showers (in a lot of vans), limited power, downsizing belongings, etc, etc, isn't for everyone.

For us, just the idea of having to live in a house again makes us miserable. We have all we want in our van - and although the house might be small, the garden is epic :)

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Apr 25, 2014
1,264
5,100
Lancaster
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MH
Overhead cab
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8 years
Wot he said above too.
For health reason we eventually had to buy a house so we chose a one bedroom cheap house so we could go travelling a lot. Some of the year we live in the house but the van still seems like home
 
Oct 12, 2009
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SW London, Poland and all Europe
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A Class N+B Arto 69GL
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CS and CL small sites are possible but a lot of them are grass only with no hard standing. According to how wel they are drained some may cause the motorhome to bog down in wet weather. Some owners close to avoid this as they can get churned up and rutted with people getting their motorhomees stuck.

Geoff
 
Jan 28, 2008
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1,353
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Renalt burstner
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7 years campers before that
rent 15000 a year water rates 800 council tax 1500 tv licence 170 electric 1200 a year 12k sounds cheap to me and i was highlighting a worse case for site fees you can probably save at least a third of that with long term deals

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OP
OP
K

Katrina Coe

Free Member
Feb 11, 2019
4
17
Norwich
Funster No
58,486
MH
Motorhome
Exp
Newbie
Thank you so much everyone for your input, it makes for fascinating reading. Only gripe is OP? Hope that is not short for OAP! Lol. I am getting a van 5.99m. New, fully winterised, solar panel and 2nd leisure battery. Whilst I want to save money, I am planning to be off exploring on my days off. I have also signed up for Brit stops.
 

JJ

Mágica
May 1, 2008
19,388
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over 50 years
Welcome.

Please believe when I say you can have a fantastic life living in a van whilst still working.

I certainly did... for many, many, many years. (Still do.)

I didn't use campsites at all but found a range of places to overnight in safely.

My daughter is moving into her van at the end of this month. Freed from the horrendous expense of house dwelling, she plans to carry out dream projects (art and design etc) to make a living which would not have been possible when there is rent to pay every week.

It is a totally different lifestyle from house living and, if it suits you, you are the dawn of an exciting new life!


JJ :cool:
 
Apr 27, 2008
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Op is original post or poster.
I think you will be running out of free posts soon. £15 a year is a bargain for all the good, and not so good advice you will get here.
 
Jun 30, 2011
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Barnard Castle, UK
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Thank you so much everyone for your input, it makes for fascinating reading. Only gripe is OP? Hope that is not short for OAP! Lol. I am getting a van 5.99m. New, fully winterised, solar panel and 2nd leisure battery. Whilst I want to save money, I am planning to be off exploring on my days off. I have also signed up for Brit stops.


Sounds like a nice van, what make are you getting?
 

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