I was answering some interview questions with Mr. Bill Richardson this week and we touched on what it's like living in a trailer. We did a little "Whale Sacs Cribz" segment. I then realized I hadn't yet posted about all the perks of my RV life inside Elizabeth Trailer. It's something dolphinately worth touching on!
Affordability is pretty self explanatory I think. I used to rent a $750 apartment to myself, with $120/mo in utilities to heat and light the place, etc. and that was CHEAP for Portland. I gave up apartment life and got myself a 15 year "mortgage" with an insanely low interest rate and monthly payment. I don't mind telling everyone what kind of money I'm saving by owning an RV. YES, I do have debt on my house, though I'd always suggest buying with cash if at all a possible. Elizabeth Trailer is a brand new $33,000 27' Travel Trailer that I paid $19,000 for (I'll help you negotiate if you ever get yourself a trailer!). But the payments are nothing like what you'd pay on a 19k car loan. I pay $150/month, most of which goes directly to principal. There are other costs of course, mainly finding somewhere affordable to park it. In Portland, I had a friend that let me rent their driveway for another $150/month, still keeping my living expenses down. The sky is really the limit for where you can park your house. If you're willing to spend the time searching, you might even be able to find somewhere you can work off your lot rent.
This second form of affordability came as a pleasant surprise to me. Although my house is probably too big for just me, I still have very little space compared to your everyday apartment. I'm also annoyingly organized, so clutter just isn't an option. What does this translate to? I never go shopping. Ok, ok, I buy food, and business items (and occasionally dresses) but other than that, I don't need anything because I don't have room for it. It's a blessing in disguise, but I've grown to like it. It saves your family and friends money too cause they KNOW you don't have room for things :D
My house is on wheels. That's the whole point, right? I can move it wherever I want. What I didn't fully understand until committing to this life is that it plays into every big decision I have to make, but makes it a much smaller, less stressful decision. "Could you move to California?" of course I could. "Could you spend a few months in Tucson?" sure thing, be right there. "Don't like Arizona?" Nope, just gotta pull my big suitcase/house somewhere else.* I can take a job anywhere, or not take a job, in the middle of nowhere for a month or for a year or anything I want, with little hassle. That kind of freedom is immensely liberating. I'm a much happier, much less anxious person because of it.
*I actually love Arizona, point is that if I didn't, I could leave in a heartbeat.
Although this word simplicity could apply to everything I've written prior, what I mean here is the fact that I have purged my un-needed belongings. I've purged a few times since originally moving in too! I feel like "things" really do become such a focus for humans. You have a big place, you fill the big place with things and that's supposed to make you happier, right? I certainly went the other way with this, and am much much happier now. I got rid of all the doo dads and thingers and fancy whatever's and I now have what I need. I have dishes and food and clothes and toiletries, a practice basket, too many frisbees, a few things for entertainment and that's about it. No clutter. It's actually a freeing feeling getting rid of all that stuff you thought you needed, and I could probably get rid of more and be just fine.
I realize this life isn't for everyone, and that families might complicate the system (though I think a traveling family is about the coolest thing I've ever heard of) but I think there are a million keys to my new happiness that all dwell inside Elizabeth Trailer and the life she's given me.
I seriously encourage every one of you to at least consider what a more simple life could do for you. If it's not for you, I get it, but I truly believe a large part of my undying happiness comes from my lifestyle.
The beauty of it all, you can always go back...
Love, simplicity, frisbees,
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