Monday, October 11, 2010

The Del Mar RV show, and living below one's means

So, I attended the RV show on Saturday.  It's only 20 minutes from my house, and it was a beautiful day.  Perfect for walking around checking out RVs.

I saw one I would have definitely been interested in if I was ready to buy.  It's a Tioga - somewhere around 29'.  I didn't get lots of information, since it really doesn't matter at this point, but I sure liked the layout.  It was listed at $39,999 I think, something like that.  In my price range.  It's a 2006.  It was so clean and spacious!  I don't care if I have slides, but they sure do make a difference.

 The colors are good - won't show the dirt as much as a lighter color.
The couch was really padded and comfortable, and the bed-over-cab was very airy.

 Nice sized bed, lots of windows, cross breezes.

 Good storage space, and a nice counter for photos or flowers.

 Loved the kitchen area - seems spacious and good storage.

 The bathroom was nice and clean, big enough shower.

It was really clean, and very light and bright.  I don't care about slides, but I will admit they do add a spacious feeling, and that would be nice for full-timing.  From what I've read and heard, there is very little that goes wrong with slides, but I think given the choice, I'd go without slides.  The Tioga had everything I wanted as far as the inside goes, and I could see myself living in this one with Katie.

This one below - have you seen it?  I didn't write down the name/model but I guess if you can afford it, you already know about it.  See the price?  $899,999. 

It actually has a slideout deck with a large TV that looked like it slides back into the RV when not on the deck.  In addition to lots of other slideouts.  Large rooms, everything anyone would want or need.  Beautiful. Tons of counter space. Very nice rig!  Of course, it's almost a million dollars!

But you know what I walked away thinking?  This is my second RV show now, and there's another one in a couple of weeks in LA - marketed as the biggest one in California - that I was very excited about going to.  I realized, though, that I have at least a year before I can realistically buy my RV.  I think I'm about a year ahead of myself. 

At least I know some of the RVs that are out there, and some of the things I want.  But I'm so easy, I've lived in so many places and really liked them all.  I think I'll be happy in almost anything, as long as it's clean and safe and mechanically sound.  It's really going to come down to finding those three things in a rig I can afford.  Being in the right place at the right time, with enough money to get what I need.

So I decided I'm not going to spend the time or gas driving to LA for the other show.  I'm going to continue downsizing my "stuff" and paying off my debt, and saving my money so I'll be ready in about a year to seriously look for and then buy my RV.  I just have to keep my eye on the prize.  It's easy to forget when something is so far away, at least for me, and I think writing this blog, and reading your blogs, is what will keep me moving ahead to my goal. 

Which brings me to my second topic, living below my means so I'll be ready financially when the time comes to "hit the road."

The above quote is one I found years ago, and have tried to think about from time to time.  When I first saw it, I printed it out on a sheet of card stock and hung it near my desk.  I do live within my means, but when I first saw this I was not.  In fact, now I'm trying to live below my means, and most of the time I'm accomplishing that. It is such a feeling of empowerment to live below my means.

I'm not doing any big - I still have cable (although it's basic cable), I eat well (but I always cook at home, seldom eat at restaurants), I have a nice phone and laptop, so there are things I can't (or won't) live without.  But there are so many small things I do that end up saving money, and hopefully will make a difference over time.  I'm also not buying any new clothing unless it's something I really need.  I have lots of shirts, shorts and jeans, which is what I'll wear when I retire, so if it's not something I'll need then, I don't buy it now.  In my spending days I wasted a lot of money on clothes.  Wish I had all that money now!

That's it for today, and now I'm going to cook some chicken breasts, an artichoke and a baked potato with all the trimmings.  Maybe some wine.  See?  I DO eat well.

From me and Katie, have a great evening, everyone!  : )


  1. $899999?!? That's CRAZY!

    One year is not a long time, yes you should start looking around to get a feel of what's out there within your price range. I'd also prefer a smaller Class C if I were to do solo RV, much easier to maneuver and save on gas (= $).

  2. I'd go to the show in LA and continue to look around. Your priorities may change once you are on the road. Sometimes many days of rain in a row make slides easier to bear cabin fever. :)

  3. The LA (Pomona) RV show is one of the biggest in the nation. Even if you don't go this year, plan to go next year. Sometimes you can get a lower "show price", especially if you don't act too eager in front of the salesman. Trust me on this: RV salesmen (or women) are like vultures. They try to become your best friend so they can make the sale. Then once the deal is done....Hey, what's your name again? We have purchased 7 motorhomes over the years and every experience has been the same. Take what they say with a grain of salt and do your own homework before going out to buy.

    I know you'll do fine since you seem to have a good head on your shoulders!

  4. I have probably looked at at least 5000 rv's in the last year. I want to make sure I know the layout and exactly what I want for little things, like a window above the cabover, a bathtub instead of just a shower, an oven (some don't come with an oven and I like baked cookies).

    I honestly think to make a good purchase you need to be sure. Especially if you are living in it. People look at alot of houses before they buy. I don't see this as any different. :)


  5. I'm going to the Pomona show and I'm not looking - it's just nice to see what's out there. So come on up!

  6. Don't just look at the insides, although that is important once you have found a layout you can live with dive under the hood, if I were looking at Class C's and only because I have owned two Chev diesel tow vehicles I would try a test drive in a Chev/GMC unit with a duramax/ allison transmission combination, you will not find a better automatic transmission than the allison, When I was looking that was the soft spot of the Ford was the auto transmission.The duramax engine is a v-8 the puts out over 300plus horsepower and yet I still get 19-20 mpg when not towing my 5th wheel and 10-13 when hitched up, a class C should average 12-14 mpg.Talk to other Class C owners and go on the Forums and go to their class C page and see what they have to say and post your questions. You still have plenty of time to make a decision, but remember 1 years flies by faster than you think and you want to buy in time so you can make a couple of shake down trips before you head out on your great adventure. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna.

  7. Slideouts really do add a lot of extra room to an RV. One thing to remember to check when looking is what kind of access would you have with the slide out in. For example, can you get to the fridge to put in groceries or make a lunch without opening slides. Could you still use the bed or the toilet, etc? Kind of important!


Thank you for your comments - we LOVE them!