One of the nice things that we face as we prepare to move full time into our motor home is the fact that we do not have to rush. Fortunately, our RV purchase was not contingent on selling the house and we could continue to travel for a few months at a time and still keep the house to return to. However, we decided early on that the cost of keeping the house and maintaining it for six months or less of occupancy out of the year is really going to cost us a lot of money that we could otherwise save by selling it. If the house were appreciating in value significantly every year, it might be a different story but that is not the case. In fact, we bought the house in 2005 and the value now doesn’t match what we paid for it 11 years ago. It looks like motor homes may not be the only depreciating asset.
At any rate our situation is a double edged sword. On the one hand it is nice not to have to rush, but on the other hand having no real deadlines to push us allows us to procrastinate. Consequently, we still have a long way to go on getting rid of stuff. Last week we got together with some friends, Linda and Eric, who just bought a Newmar Ventana and recently sold their house and are now full time RV’ers. Congrats to them for having a plan and sticking to their timeline so they could get on the road. After spending an evening with them, Liz and I sat down and discussed how we were going to move forward on our plan. We decided that we needed a specific date to be our move out date instead of having it be some undetermined time in the future. We decided on April 1st 2017. Although that date is somewhat arbitrary, it allows us time to do the things that we need to do around the house in preparation to sell and to take the trips that we have already planned for the fall and winter (details in a later post). We are also leaning toward just having an estate sale when the time comes. Personally, I don’t feel like trying to sell everything through garage sales and Craig’s list. For me, having someone coordinate an estate sale is worth it’s cost in reduced stress. Everything will be out of the house no later than April 1st and we will be on the road. When the house sells, we will return for the closing or do it electronically, if we can.
So, we have a plan with a deadline, but as everyone knows the “devil is in the details” so to speak. What is our first move? Well I started by hiring a young high school boy who was looking for a summer job. Over the next few weeks he will help us get some of the things done around here, starting with whipping the landscape into shape. Our house has a lot of great landscaping, but it also takes a lot of effort to maintain it so getting it back in great form takes some effort. In
the past 2 1/2 weeks Pablo and I have trimmed numerous trees, pressure washed the drive and both front and back porches, painted some lawn furniture, re-seated two stone paths, and spread two stake body truck loads of mulch (25 Cubic Yards). I truly hate home ownership! We have made a couple trips to the trash transfer
station with old grills, chairs, etc that needed to be trashed. There will be many more trips in the next few weeks. Liz has taken lots of old books to the library and is working on reducing the amount of clothes we have on hand. If we can just do a little each day, I think that we can make some significant headway in the coming weeks.
Switching gears to the motorhome, I received a recall from Detroit Axle and Newmar on the Freightliner chassis. Evidently, there is an issue with the mounting of the drive axle sway bar on certain Freightliner chassis’ built between March of 2015 and January of 2016. Of course, our particular one is in that group. I went back and forth for a few days between Freightliner and Detroit Axle on whether or not the recall was active or on hold. Detroit Axle customer service was telling me to take it to Freightliner immediately and Freightliner was saying that they had no authorization to do any repairs. It seemed that they were still verifying the VIN numbers of the involved chassis. I think the notification went out to the customer before all the details were ironed out and it caused a lot of confusion. I have to say it was frustrating and I ended up in a three way conversation with Detroit Axle and Freightliner to finally get it ironed out. We finally dropped it off at Freightliner of Savannah last Friday and of course they have to order the parts so they will have it for a couple of weeks. Fortunately, we aren’t heading out till July 22nd so we should have plenty of time. I guess if we were full timing now, we would be hanging around Savannah for a week or so.