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Fulltimer statistics


BrianT

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I am curious about something.

 

Are there published statistics anywhere that track fulltime rivers?

 

For instance, of those who enter fulltime rving, how long do they average before they fall out of / end their fulltiming? What might have been their reasons? What percentage that stop do so because they no longer want to vs want to but no longer can? Those kinds of things.

 

It would be an interesting read if it exists.

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I've seen some "guesstimates" in various print articles from time to time, but nothing with any statistical validation. I suspect the reasons for getting off the fulltiming road are as varied as the reasons for getting on it in the first place. I've met folks that quit after a year or so despite starting out intending to make it their ongoing lifestyle, and folks that started out as a means of finding where they wanted to settle after a year or two, and are still going strong a dozen years later. Given that most fulltimers are of somewhat advanced years, my best guess would be that the most common reason for a seasoned fulltimer to quit would be health issues in some form.

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Escapees has published surveys of their members. The last I found was from 2010. It states that 49% of Escapees members that responded lived fulltime in their RV. Good Sam published a survey in 2008. 11% of those responding indicated that they lived in their RV fulltime. Neither survey provides demographic information specific to fulltimers that I could find.

 

The Census collects data from those living in Transitory Residences (Hotels, Campgrounds, RV Parks) which they define as "People whose “usual home” at the time of the census is transitory or mobile are counted during a special “transitory enumeration” that takes place in late March and early April. Locations for this special count include RV parks, campgrounds, single-room occupancy hotels, motels, marinas, racetracks, circuses, and carnivals." I did a quick search and could not find any summary or statistics specifically for this group.

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Well first thing you would have to do is get an agreement of what the term fulltiming is - - good luck. :D

 

Barb

Right. I was told just this week that I'm not a fulltimer. I happen to own an RV lot.....so I can't be a fulltimer. A fulltimer does not own ANYTHING they have to pay real estate tax on. Period. Oh, and the fact that I rent this lot and have not even seen it for 7 years? Irrelevant. I still own it so I could not "possibly be called a fulltimer". :)

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Well first thing you would have to do is get an agreement of what the term fulltiming is - - good luck. :D

 

Barb

 

 

I'll take a stab at this. Wouldn't it be that you are living in your RV 24/7/365?

 

The only time you are not living in the RV is when you have flown somewhere or are staying in a hotel because the RV is in the shop and you can't stay in it, or you are over-nighting for a few days with friends/relatives due to a special occasion.

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You really don't want to go there. This discussion has been repeated more times than most of us can remember, and the arguments and end result is always the same. You go ahead and define it however you like. Just don't expect everyone to agree with you.

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Brian, as mentioned by another the only such information that I have seen is the surveys of both Good Sam and Escapees and both of them only survey their members, when they do so. The Escapee mail service has about 12,000 active addresses the last time that I checked, which I think was about a year ago but that doesn't begin to say how many there are. I too frequently seem to hear a number around 1 million from RV folks on forums but have not seen anything to support a number that is even close to that figure. The last census bureau figures that I saw were from the 2000 census when they reported about a half million in "non-conventional" housing which they defined as boats, RVs, motels, hotels, and shelters. I'm not sure if that includes those under a bridge, but suspect so.

 

Since there is no place that one registers when they go on the road with an RV, there is also no way to know how long the majority stay. If these forums are any indication, then I would bet that more than half stay around for more than one or two years, but that too is nothing more than a guess and has no documentation at all. Because we are such an independent bunch of people we are very difficult to track and just about any number someone throws out can be argued for or against.

 

The nearest thing to a study that I have ever heard of was one out of Texas A&M, sociology dept. I believe it was. That was at least 10 years ago and I think longer than that. I kept some of the information from the article about it but don't have that article any longer. I do recall that they only studies the RV travelers in Texas and were trying to come up with rough numbers of fulltimers, snowbirds, vacation travelers and such. They did have some numbers for impact upon TX but concluded that there were no clear definitions of most groups of RV travel types. About the only conclusion they gave was in terms of dollars of economic impact, estimated numbers of winter visitors and a few other odd facts. Mostly they determined that it is impossible to study such a mobile group with any accuracy.

I'll take a stab at this. Wouldn't it be that you are living in your RV 24/7/365?

 

The only time you are not living in the RV is when you have flown somewhere or are staying in a hotel because the RV is in the shop and you can't stay in it, or you are over-nighting for a few days with friends/relatives due to a special occasion.

I have attempted to do what you are on occasion, but find that even if you state what you personally mean by the term you will get attacked by someone who is offended by the parameters that you set. I particularly recall on post on this forum which stated that the author was a "part-time fulltimer." Until one of the major dictionaries chooses to define the term in print, there will be no way to support one view over another. Do you state a specific number of nights per year in the RV? And does the RV have to move about or could it include someone like one of our neighbors here who live in a fifth wheel and have not owned anything that could tow that fiver for at least five years now and the RV axle is sitting on blocks with flat tires on them? Is that person a fulltimer?

 

I suggest that no definition is going to be acceptable to all and no matter what we might agree upon, someone will be offended. :P

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My personal definition of a "fulltimer" is anyone that considers their RV "home", even when they're not living in it for some period. I don't know of anything that prevents fulltimers from spending time away from the RV, whether it's a cruise, a resort hotel, or a stay in a lakeside cottage they own and visit from time to time as we do. If a fulltimer takes a 30 day cruise to Europe, does that mean they're no longer "fulltimers"? That said, we generally refer to our lifestyle as "longtimers" just because it doesn't raise the "fulltimer" definition issues that always seem to go along with that label.

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The last couple or since 1999 the census bureau figures doesn't have me in it. No one has ever counted me that I know of.

And the mailing address I use. No one that lives there has ever turned me in for a count.

The closest my MH has been to that address is around 5 miles.

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The last couple or since 1999 the census bureau figures doesn't have me in it. No one has ever counted me that I know of.

And the mailing address I use. No one that lives there has ever turned me in for a count.

The closest my MH has been to that address is around 5 miles.

100 years from now, someone in your extended family is going to wonder what happened to you and why you dropped off the face of the earth as they use census data to try and trace their family. :D

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Is being a full timer some kind of badge of honor? Why do we have to label anybody?

 

It's the thing to do -- especially during Winter along with discussions on . . .

  • 6V vs 12V batteries
  • Gas vs Diesel motorhomes
  • Flooded vs AGM batteries
  • Absorption vs Residential fridges
  • etc, etc
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The Escapee mail service has about 12,000 active addresses the last time that I checked,

 

And, of course, not everyone who uses the Escapees mail service is a fulltimer. We are no longer fulltimers, but do use the service so we have someplace to have our mail sent when we're traveling in the Southwest during the winter. We also have all of our magazines sent there year around so that I don't have to go through the exercise of changing addresses twice a year!

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