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Old 10-31-2009, 06:27 AM   #1
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Full timing in an urban environment?

For folks who currently full-time in their bus:
Does anyone work and/or live in an urban area? If so, where do you park your bus? Is the fee for renting the spot expensive? If you park in a friend's and/or relative's property, how are you affected by zoning laws?

While I have a couple of parking places in mind once I'm on the bus full time, all of them are in outlying areas that will require quite the commute in to work every day. Only one of them, a little mom & pop campground, is inexpensive enough to really be affordable in the long term, but the commute to work will be an hour each way . Not too bad gas-wise for the motorcycle, just a huge waste of my personal time.

I could park closer in the local city campsites, but would end up paying as much per month for a spot as I pay now for my mortgage! Since I'll have a couple of years yet in this area working to build up a "nest egg", it would be stupid to spend the same amount in rent as I now pay in mortgage.

Any advice from folks already doing this would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 10-31-2009, 02:24 PM   #2
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Re: Full timing in an urban environment?

Zoning laws can vary, and aren't always predictable. I've parked a few miles outside of a semi-major metro area (Tucson, AZ) on a friend's property w/o hassles. Others I know tried to park in the county, 10 miles from a small-ish town (Flagstaff, AZ) and were kicked out because of CCRs for the development (and it wasn't a cookie-cutter McMansion-fest). So zoning and CCRs are the variables, and unpredictable.

I've seen ads on Craigslist for parking on private property. Also put the word out to friends, co-workers. Maybe someone with the space wouldn't mind a couple extra Benjamins every month.
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Old 10-31-2009, 04:48 PM   #3
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Re: Full timing in an urban environment?

TC,
I used to live in the mountains an hour from work. The drive in and out was very cleansing, giving me enough time to clear my mind. I didn't walk in the door at night still fussing about something that happened at work. In the morning, I would have a couple of cups of coffee from a jug stored in my home-made console on the way in. (OK, that part is hard on a bike.) If the campground is nice, and makes you feel like you are on vacation every night, there are worse things than 10 or 12 hours of touring per week.

I guess it really depends on if you are moving along the whole time, or stopping every 100 yards for lights or traffic jams. I had 1 E-Z Pass lane, 1 toll booth, 3 stop signs, 4 right turns on red, and less than a dozen other traffic lights the whole way. If I had to wait at 30-40 lights, it would have been different.
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Old 10-31-2009, 04:49 PM   #4
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Re: Full timing in an urban environment?

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Old 10-31-2009, 09:31 PM   #5
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Re: Full timing in an urban environment?

When I was living in my Travel Trailer in the city of Portsmouth Va I was in a friends backyard for 1.5 years, it worked out really well, but I had to use a toter to take my gray & black water to the front yard where they had a clean-out for me to dump. A cop finally spotted me back there and sent the zoning codes enforcement people around to boot me outta there. From there I went to a campground in the city of Chesapeake Va a bit further out of the city. The campground cost me $387 per month for 30amp water & electric site, plus $4 for the Honey Wagon service, which I only needed once per week.

I also stayed there for a while when I moved aboard the bus, but they would not let me work on the bus while it was at the campground. So I wound up moving to a Mobile Home Park (most of them in this city allow RV's in the MH Parks). The Mobile Home Park charged me $490 per month for a 50amp electric, water & sewer hook-up, and I also had phone and cable tv service if I was willing to pay for it.

I was trying to move my bus to the MH Park I'm living at now, but he didn't have an open site, but he sold me a Mobile Home that cost less than my bus did, so all is good. He charges $210 per month and includes water & sewer, my electric is running me around $70 per month.
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Old 11-04-2009, 07:30 AM   #6
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Re: Full timing in an urban environment?

Quote:
Originally Posted by GoneCamping
When I was living in my Travel Trailer in the city of Portsmouth Va I was in a friends backyard for 1.5 years, it worked out really well, but I had to use a toter to take my gray & black water to the front yard where they had a clean-out for me to dump. A cop finally spotted me back there and sent the zoning codes enforcement people around to boot me outta there. From there I went to a campground in the city of Chesapeake Va a bit further out of the city. The campground cost me $387 per month for 30amp water & electric site, plus $4 for the Honey Wagon service, which I only needed once per week.

I also stayed there for a while when I moved aboard the bus, but they would not let me work on the bus while it was at the campground. So I wound up moving to a Mobile Home Park (most of them in this city allow RV's in the MH Parks). The Mobile Home Park charged me $490 per month for a 50amp electric, water & sewer hook-up, and I also had phone and cable tv service if I was willing to pay for it.

I was trying to move my bus to the MH Park I'm living at now, but he didn't have an open site, but he sold me a Mobile Home that cost less than my bus did, so all is good. He charges $210 per month and includes water & sewer, my electric is running me around $70 per month.
Awesome info! Thanks so much for the tips. I feel a LOT better about things now. I really didn't want to stay in this area, but because NO ONE is looking at the house, I need to go ahead and get a realtor. Unfortunately, that will take 6% away from the sale price, and I was counting on all of the income from the house to pay off debt, build the bus, and buy enough land to build a campground. Looks like the campground idea will have to wait now, though. Gonna have to stay at work long enough to make up the difference. Which campgrounds were you using?

Thanks so much!
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Old 11-04-2009, 10:35 PM   #7
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Re: Full timing in an urban environment?

I only used one campground, Chesapeake campground. One thing you should do is drive around inside some of the mobile home parks in your area and see if they have RV's in them... These are usually much cheaper than a campground...
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Old 11-21-2009, 11:22 PM   #8
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Re: Full timing in an urban environment?

Wife and I are house sitting. I noble cause but if I remember right others have talked about contacting folks about "watching", baby sitting, their homes while away. If your in an area with a lot of "Snow birds" ( Folks who pack-up and move for a season of the year) like we are it is a great possibility. Granted you must be trustworthy, and not as scary looking as me but you get the point. They were very happy to let us park our bus and get a free guard. Anyway just my 2 cents
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Old 11-22-2009, 07:17 AM   #9
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Re: Full timing in an urban environment?

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Originally Posted by madpsalmer
Wife and I are house sitting.
That is also a great idea. I did that for years for my grandparents before they decided to move to Florida full time. It worked out great.

But, my biggest problem with this area is zoning restrictions that don't let "oversized" vehicles park in neighborhoods. Otherwise, I'd just park at my mother's house. Zoning regulations are the bane of RV life!!!
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Old 11-22-2009, 05:37 PM   #10
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Re: Full timing in an urban environment?

OOOoooo! That just might work!
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