We travel full time with our Tiny House RV and so far we've gone 15,000 miles in eight months. I don't know of any other Tiny House RV that travels as much as we do, so we've had to figure out a lot of logistics on the road. Below I've outlined my monthly expenses in hopes that it is helpful for my fellow travel bugs!
If you're looking for explanations on towing specifications and requirements, click here.
Our wet Tiny House RV - we assume the house weighs more after a rain!
MY MONTHLY EXPENSES ON THE ROAD
Our Tiny House RV weighs 10,100 pounds when fully loaded. We tow with a Ford F-250 Diesel 4x4 and get between 8-10 mpg. We put 2,070 miles per month on our truck. That number includes ALL driving, not just towing.
MAINTENANCE ON TRUCK: $294*
*This number has been divided by the eight and a half months we've been on the road to calculate our average monthly expenses. Total truck maintenance is $2,499
This number is SUPER high! We had to replace a few parts in our truck, including the FICM, the alternator and two batteries. I can't say whether this is due to towing or not, because the 2006 Ford F-250s are known for these problems. Sigh.. that's life I guess. Hopefully this number will start to go down.
MAINTENANCE ON TRAILER: $55*
*This number has been divided by the eight and a half months we've been on the road to calculate our average monthly expenses. Total trailer maintenance is $467.50
We had a regular 10,000 bearing inspection (they were good). We had to replace our tongue jack because we crashed the Tiny House RV on our maiden voyage... Full explanation here. We also had to replace our chimney cap a few times due to damage from low tree branches.
TRUCK INSURANCE: $95
We are insured through State Farm. We have liability coverage on our "tow load."
TRUCK PAYMENT: $0
Our truck is paid off. Yippee!
TINY HOUSE RV PAYMENT: $0
Our Tiny House RV is paid off. Yippee!
MOBILE INTERNET: $130
We use Verizon wireless as our provider because they have the fastest data service. We've been relatively happy with the service, but it's expensive. Due to our web related jobs, we need at least 30 gigabytes a month. This isn't even enough for us to stream movies, we always run out! Obviously if you do not need 30 GB (or the internet at all) this number is irrelevant. Campgrounds sometimes have WIFI available, but it's almost always terribly slow.
CAMPGROUND FEES: $238
We park in campgrounds on average 9 nights a month. The rest of the time we park on private property, offered by some of the most gracious people in the world (our followers and other Tiny House RV enthusiasts). That helps A LOT! Campground fees can average between $10 - $60 a night. We are a member of Passport America, which offers a 50% discount on thousands of campgrounds all over North America.
We use propane for our cooktop, water heater and sometimes to power our refrigerator.
WATER / ELECTRIC: $0
We fill up our water tank in campgrounds or from our parking hosts. So far we haven't had to pay for water or power (of which we use very little), aside from our campground fees.
We carry our trash and dispose of it responsibly in campgrounds.
TOTAL AVERAGE MONTHLY EXPENSES FOR TOWING & TINY LIFESTYLE = $1550
This total number is for two people and while it might seem high, it's less than just our apartment rent payment in Los Angeles! We could save a lot of money by traveling less and canceling our internet, but that's not the lifestyle we want at this time. We also hope our truck maintenance costs will go down now that we've fixed everything. You might notice that we did not include food expenses, cell phones expenses, student loans, etc. That is because those expenses would be the same on or off the road, tiny or big.
QUESTIONS?? I'll do my best to answer them.
Jenna Spesard is currently living and traveling around North America in a DIY Tumbleweed Cypress with her partner, Guillaume, who is a professional photographer and Tumbleweed Workshop host. They are photographing and writing about their adventure and occasionally they will be hosting an open house. Follow their informative blog.