Moving Out

by Jay
(Waupun Wi.)

We really enjoy all the information we get from this site. Most of it is very usefull. We also go to the Workampers web site for additional information.

There is one aspect of RVing no one has touched on. We live on a very meager income of Social Security & Disability so we have to stay home OR go full time. We cannot afford a home base.

So, here is the problem, we have lived in our home for 20 years & have accumulated a lot of "stuff". How do we know what to keep & what to get rid of? There are some items we want to hang on to but they have no room in our small RV. What do you do with the items you decide you could live without?

This is a major concern for my wife who has strong family ties. I, on the other hand, have had very little family and few personal items. I could pack a suitcase & leave now without ever looking back.

My attitude is that what we don't need in the RV, the kids can deal with after we leave (or make a deal with our landlord). Anyone have any ideas?

Comments for Moving Out

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Dec 31, 2010
Two processes
by: Jarl Nischan

We face the same issue, too much "stuff," and have gone about downsizing slowly. Our friends who went full-time this year did the "earthquake" approach - a big separation from their stuff (including house), by setting a deadline and selling/giving. We are more like the erosion approach - a bit at a time, every week.

One advantage of the erosion approach is that it showed us that we had too much stuff, period. We didn't need it all or really want it all. Another advantage is that it allowed us to build some unity around downsizing, so that there wouldn't be lingering resentments by either of us. We still have a long way to go in reducing stuff, but we've come a long way in getting the right attitude and agreement on lifestyle, which matters a lot for us while traveling.

Dec 30, 2010
by: Jay

Thanks to everyone who had ideas. We kinda had some of the same ideas. One idea we had also involved some who wre trying to purchase a farm. IF they get it, this will solve most of the problems. We can store items at their farm & use the farm for our "summer home".

We should know something by the end of February. I really liked the idea of family taking some of the more important items. Again, thanks for the ideas. If you have more, we'd love to hear them

Jay & Patti

Dec 30, 2010
What To Do With Your "Stuff"
by: Bud Corwin

Hey Jay,
When my wife and I sold our house back in 2002, we bought a 40-foot storage trailer and set it on our sons land. We had a huge garage sale and whatever we didn't get rid of, we put in the trailer. Whenever we get back to Arizona, we put other items in it and take out what we will need while we are here.

I know that some folks can't afford this arrangement so I would suggest that you and your wife decide what you can't live without and then have a garage sale. Some things can probably be left at the kids house and then when you return for a visit, you can figure out if you really need these stored items. If not, sell them or donate them to someone who can use them.

Hope this helps, and let me know if I can help in any way.

Dec 30, 2010
Getting rid of stuff
by: Susan & Peter

We've confronted much the same kind of consideration -- not that we have to live full-time in our RV, but that we have a small house and too much stuff, and we're getting older and want to simplify.

The first thing I suggest is to divide your belongings into 3 categories: things that are really useful for your life as it is now, things that are leftover from previous lives, and things that you've been saving just in case your life turned out to be a certain way (but didn't). The last category ought to be the easiest to let go of, and once you get the hang of divesting, it gets easier, even fun.

It's easy enough to give stuff away: your local thrift stores, your church or school rummage sale, put it out on the street with a FREE sign, or offer it on a website such as (I did this with an old dryer once, and it was gone in 20 minutes).

If you want to make money off your stuff, which sounds like it might be a good idea, you can have a yard sale (which is a lot of work but fun), or sell it on eBay or Craig's List.

You might even be able to swap some of your unwanted stuff for things you need for the RV. A long shot, but...

It sounds like there might be some family friction if you sell or give away some of the stuff. If this is (or might become) a real issue, you might let all your relatives know that this is happening, and invite them to visit to claim things they value. It might be a bit weird, like attending your own estate sale, but it could be salutary for everyone, too. It could be a sendoff party, so people can ooh and aah about your RV! Maybe even plant a seed in them that getting rid of excess stuff is a good and healthy thing. Naahh -- but good for you!

Happy trails!

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