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About ToddF

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    Senior Member

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    Burnsville, MN
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    Biking, Half Timer, Bichon Frise fan

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  1. ToddF

    RGV Cheap RV lots

    Here is another "condo" park I ran into during my travels down in the RGV. http://leisurevalleyranch.info This park looks like a twin to Hidden Valley Ranch. I note these parks allow for multiple dwellings on 1 lot. So you could potentially have a park model or other fixed structure plus your RV on the same lot. Most condo or coop parks only allow 1 living unit on a lot. RGV is getting busier...several residents told me Victoria Palms filled up last year.
  2. ToddF

    Class C with higher interior height

    Minnie Winnie 31D 😃👍
  3. ToddF

    Thousand Trails Zone Pass

    We use TT in the NE and SE zones +Trails Collection nationwide. Most parks have FHU. Worst case scenario is W+E with a dump station in the park. TV varies, some have cable available for a fee. Some free. Some NO TV. No comparison to boondocking. Some parks have overflow parking to accommodate campers during peak periods. Getting into popular parks during peak periods is an unknown for us as we travel Labor Day-Christmas. We can get in to any park we want during these months.
  4. ToddF

    RGV Cheap RV lots

    We toured 4 of the parks I mentioned in my previous email. All very well maintained. There are a fair number of lots for sale. We're ahead of ourselves and now have an idea of options for the future. Staying at Victoria Palms in Donna, very nice.
  5. With the coops, there will by definition be a board of directors and self-management. (This is one of the reasons they tend to be very cheap places to park). Lower overhead (salaries)=lower costs. One has to consider their willingness/desire to live in such a cooperative community. There are pluses and minuses. Escapees doesn't seem to want to grow their base of parks. Hence long waiting lists. Good news is that if you want a deeded lot, there are plenty of other options out there. Read board meeting minutes and talk to residents to get a sense of the politics, issues etc that go on.
  6. ToddF

    Thousand Trails Zone Pass

    I would try it and see how it goes. You can upgrade after the first year if it doesn't work well with the 60 day window.I like the pass +TC because of the low cost, no up front investment, and 7 days out forces one to try state parks, other private campgrounds etc. Folks on the lifetime memberships don't have 7 days out, can stay 21 or 28 days. Except in TC parks, there is always a 7 day out before you can go to another TC park. Encore acquires parks in a wide range of conditions. Then makes various upgrades and improvements. They vary considerably from park to park, most are pretty darn good. 1 or 2 14 day stays pay for entire cost of the pass.
  7. Checked in to Victoria Palms today in the Valley (Donna TX). We gained access to this park via our "Trails Collection" add on. ($199). They roll out the red carpet for new arrivals, I've never seen anything like it. They called yesterday to confirm our arrival. Upon registration, we received a welcome kit with all sorts of goodies. The park is beautiful...our site has FHU including free cable TV (100+ stations) and free WiFi. There was a fish fry (delicious) for $8.96. (Not a typo). The pool area, craft rooms, library, lounges are second to none. You can only stay here for 14 days at a time on the trails Collection pass. (No cost for entire stay!) (7 days out). The regular rate is higher than some places but worth it in my opinion. I post this because I talk to full timers who say they don't know about Thousand Trails! Looking forward to another 14 day stay in Spirit Mesa in Dec. The regular zones don't have parks in the Valley, but with the TC, you get access to many. The one in Punta Gorda is of similar quality.
  8. We just left Rainbow Plantation (Summerdale AL). There is 1 deeded lot with a S+B on it for sale. Otherwise, everything in the ERPU section and deeded section is full/sold. It is a wonderful location. There are several owners who rent RV lots off their deeded (owned) property. (The lots are 1/2 acre so huge). Maybe you could lease one of these on a trial basis. I was told the transient section is booked for the winter.
  9. ToddF

    Did Rainbow Plantation have any storm damage?

    Several of the S+B homes have experienced flooding during storm. No other damage visible here after a 5 night stay. From Gulf Shores to Fairhope, the area appears to be unscathed. (We love it here and if retired would spend winters here.) Have been checking out snowbird locations and this area has risen to the top. Great park, convenient to multiple super towns, some of the best biking in Gulf Shores SP and the BEACH. It doesn't get too much better than this. ( I like the more moderate temps ...it can dip down during the winter nights). The ability to day trip easily to all these areas makes this a great choice.
  10. ToddF

    RGV Cheap RV lots

    Minnesota has low property taxes (high income tax). Then there is a refund available to many based on income. Many retirees get back a significant portion of their property tax bill on form M1PR. On an RV lot, the taxes are just on the land ..typically under $200 year. There is no tax on an RV except annual registration ($105 or less). We won't pay income tax when we retire. Our property taxes on S+B in a high service county under $2,000. Have gone up from $1,500 in 2000 when we bought. When one of us dies and household income drops accordingly, the afforementioned refund program will give the survivor a nice refund on the $2,000. If I get old and need services, the county will assign a social worker to my case and try to keep me in my home. Stuff like this isn't free.
  11. ToddF

    RGV Cheap RV lots

    Please pray for us. Leaving Nashville tomorrow headed to the RGV via Summerdale AL. I don't want to do any buying on this trip! LOL
  12. On the subject of campground reservations, I must say I love the Thousand Trails reservation system So convenient! I primarily use the website but when I do call, the agent knows who I am instantly from my phone #. Awesome service. My zone pass +Trails Collection is an awesome deal. I have 32 nights booked on this 9 week trip. If I didn't use the pass anymore during my contract year , (I will) my average cost per night with FHU is $20.16.
  13. No, the 6 year old battery stopped holding a charge. Probably due to abuse. LOL. New one seems fine Thanks for heads up that the mentioned unit is probably not good for this application.
  14. ToddF

    Where ar you in the summer?

    I didn't mean you have to do 2 months as CG Host. MN will take folks for 2-4 weeks if they have openings, subject to the park ranger's discretion.
  15. ToddF

    Where ar you in the summer?

    One way to do July-August is to become a CG Host, guaranteeing a campsite in a desired location and saving $ at the same time. That's how we managed to spend the month of August on Minnesota's North Shore for the last 2 summers. Places like MN North Shore are very popular July-Aug and difficult to get reservations in. We like the Jersey Shore after Labor Day, no crowds and no res needed. Another area where July-Aug would be tough to get reservations w/o planning and big $. We prefer the Midwest and East...more crowded July-Aug. S+B is our choice for the big weekends and month of July.