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 > Living in Cap over trailer full time advice

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Kayteg1

California > Nevada

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Posted: 09/12/17 06:42pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

There are campers and there are campers.
Counting this year we spend about 150 days (still counting) in our 11-footers with single slide.
That is me, wife and 3 little dogs.
Size was never an issue, but we also did have other places to story our stuff.
With F250 and need for towing the size will be limited, but first check the ordinance about TC parking and living as CA can be very strict about it.
You will need hookups.

SidecarFlip

Deerfield, Michigan

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Posted: 09/12/17 07:06pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Back in the 60's when I was a hippie (long hair and all), I lived in a VW Microbus for a year, sponged off my friends for showers and toilet issues and had a fantastic time. I'd do it again in a minute.

Problem is, I have responsibilities now. Things like the farm keep me tied to one place most of the year but I still yearn to do it anyway. Nice to dream.

My wife and I have no issues living in a TC if only for a vacation but if I was young again, I'd be in one all the time.


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Reddog1

El Dorado, CA

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Posted: 09/12/17 07:15pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

It is very doable. For five years I lived in my TC on my 2500 truck, in a parking lot. This was due to a mandatory job assignment. I lived in my TC four nights and four days per week. I made the drive home on weekends.

It was a struggle at first, learning what to do with my time after work. I tried many things, and found it was pretty easy to park in shopping centers, park or wherever you would park a car. I was never questioned. I usually would get free wifi while in the camper, on a park bench, or at coffee shop. Sometimes I would watch a DVD movie that one of my friends gave or loaned me. Some of my friends would buy them at garage sales for me at .50 or $1 each. I still have over fifty I have not seen.

For breakfast, I typically would eat the same food as when at home. I might take a lunch to work or eat at our local Greasy Spoon. For Dinner, I also pretty much ate the same as when I was home, just usually cooked in my camper. Sometimes I would go to a park and breakout my Grill. Sometimes I would just go park in one of the many Shopping Centers to prepare and eat dinner just for a change of scenery.

Within the first two weeks I found several places to dump my tanks and fill my fresh water. Within three months I found several places I could stay over night, but I prefered the parking lot where I worked. I never had hookups of any kind. I honestly would never have thought I could have done that, but I was surprised how quickly I adapted. For me to have rented a room would have cost about $1200 per month.

I was an Educator at San Quentin State Prison. I though of living in the parking lot like living in a gated community, with frequent patrols. There were several Correctional Officers working at San Quentin State Prison that also lived in their TCs.

Wayne

SidecarFlip

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Posted: 09/12/17 07:36pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Reddog1 wrote:

It is very doable. For five years I lived in my TC on my 2500 truck, in a parking lot. This was due to a mandatory job assignment. I lived in my TC four nights and four days per week. I made the drive home on weekends.

It was a struggle at first, learning what to do with my time after work. I tried many things, and found it was pretty easy to park in shopping centers, park or wherever you would park a car. I was never questioned. I usually would get free wifi while in the camper, on a park bench, or at coffee shop. Sometimes I would watch a DVD movie that one of my friends gave or loaned me. Some of my friends would buy them at garage sales for me at .50 or $1 each. I still have over fifty I have not seen.

For breakfast, I typically would eat the same food as when at home. I might take a lunch to work or eat at our local Greasy Spoon. For Dinner, I also pretty much ate the same as when I was home, just usually cooked in my camper. Sometimes I would go to a park and breakout my Grill. Sometimes I would just go park in one of the many Shopping Centers to prepare and eat dinner just for a change of scenery.

Within the first two weeks I found several places to dump my tanks and fill my fresh water. Within three months I found several places I could stay over night, but I prefered the parking lot where I worked. I never had hookups of any kind. I honestly would never have thought I could have done that, but I was surprised how quickly I adapted. For me to have rented a room would have cost about $1200 per month.

I was an Educator at San Quentin State Prison. I though of living in the parking lot like living in a gated community, with frequent patrols. There were several Correctional Officers working at San Quentin State Prison that also lived in their TCs.

Wayne


I think the prevailing attitude here is, triple slides and all the conveniences. You really don't need all that. Just the basic stuff, especially if you do it alone. I could get by without even an oven, in fact, my present unit don't have one and I really don't miss it. No slides for me either. My Lance didn't have slides and my wife and I did a lot of extended camping in it, one time 6 months straight with no let up and it worked for us just fine but the both of us are used to the basic necessities.

I look at it as a challenge not drudgery.... and it's fun too.

Lwiddis

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Posted: 09/12/17 07:45pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

"but first check the ordinance about TC parking and living as CA can be very strict about it."

The "strictness" comes from people attempting to camp for free in commercial zones.


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NRALIFR

Truck Camping Out West

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Posted: 09/12/17 07:53pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Just my opinion, but any advice that begins with "You will be much happier with......" should be disregarded. I don't care if you're talking about RV's, cars, or women. I'll choose my own, thank you.

I've lived for months at a time in all of the TC's I've owned. I bought them to do just that, and have never regretted not having a big trailer to live in. Not everyone is a square footage person, and I am definitely not. Every time we're out in our TC (and I mean every single time) we have at least one opportunity to say "Geez I'm glad we're not towing anything".

Can it be done, yes. Can you do it, maybe.

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cewillis

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Posted: 09/12/17 10:21pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

NRALIFR wrote:

Just my opinion, but any advice that begins with "You will be much happier with......" should be disregarded.

OUTSTANDING observation!!!


Cal


work2much

Jackson Ca

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Posted: 09/13/17 01:51am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Our first TC was a very old wood framed 11 foot camper we carried on our 3/4 ton truck. We took it all across the West. No holding tanks, no bathroom, no heater, no Battery aside from truck battery. If not for work we could have managed that for a long time.


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valhalla360

No paticular place.

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Posted: 09/13/17 02:38am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Biggest issue I see is your plan to stealth camp 365 days per year. Most universities are pretty strict about parking and no way are they going to want you living in their parking lot when they have perfectly good dorm rooms...that conveniently make them money.

Likewise, how long is your friend going to be happy paying rent on a place while you live there for free. Also, are there zoning or home owner association rules that prohibit this?

It would be different if you were moving around over a wider area. A few nights here or there and you can fly under the radar but months or years and it gets iffy.

Physically doing it is certainly possible but not fun. Spent a summer sleeping in the bed of my truck in park & ride lots (going home on weekends) but I rotated thru them and kept a low profile. Of course, this was out in a rural area not a college campus.


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languiduck

Suffolk, VA In a van down by the river

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Posted: 09/13/17 07:20am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Some people forget how it is starting out life. The OP has a great idea and seemingly a good plan to not start life out with a pile of debt and paying rent or being house poor with a mortgage.
Yeah, you can live in a TC. Your F250 will pull a horse trailer, a dually would be better, but that's not what you have so there's no reason to go further with that. The F250 has no less hauling capacity that an F350 so I don't understand why folks keep acting as if there's a problem with that.
Only advice I have to you is check carefully about parking the RV on campus, or at your friends...make sure there's no HOA governing the parking of RVs there or you'll get him some letters and potentially a fine. You will have to eventually find hook ups to dump the tanks if you use them.
There's always campgrounds you can look at too.

* This post was edited 09/13/17 11:30am by languiduck *


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