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Park Model or RV?


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Our friends winter in Yuma every year. They purchased a Park model about 10 years ago and they absolutely love it. We've been in the RV hunt, back and forth between a 5th wheel or class A for several years now. Certainly the park model offers no means of exploring the great United States... but it has us thinking. I've stayed with them several times over the years and I must say, it is a nice park and comfortable set-up for a couple.

 

I'm curious how many on the forum own these and whether you do so and still RV or maybe migrated to one after having had your fill of exploring in an RV? Also, to those who own park models, how do you like it?

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We too have considered a park model in our future. The actual residence is not the concern for us but rather the park it would be in. Some parks we have been in have numerous park models for sale by owners. Is the lot rent high? Is it a deeded lot? How are the association fees? Also we have talked to people that have moved into a park & were happy with their neighbors, but then the nice neighbors moved shortly after. I guess for us we would do the park model route but not until we are ready to settle down. We enjoy our freedom to move easily right now. Dave

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We didn't tire of the travel but after 11+ years health issues began to cause major problems with the life and so we found a spot to roost, and returned to part-time RV travels. We looked at a number of park models and also at parks and purchased properties to place one on and just were not that happy with either. We eventually settled in a community of former fulltimers who live in "barndomineums." We found the park models to be more cramped in many ways than our RV had been but where we are now we have more space with a limit here of 900 sq. ft.

 

For us, the small quarters of RV living are much more acceptable when you are free to move about than if you sit in one fixed location for long periods and so we passed on all of the park models that we saw.

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There are so many things t think about. This was our 12th season in Yuma. There are numerous park models amongst us RVers in the park we are in. Some of the park model folks were RVers prior to buying a park model. Most folks that use an RV in the winter at Yuma have more inside room than park models because of slides. Another question is what do you pay when you aren't there, full price or a "storage" price. Can you sublet in case you can't come south to try to recoup some of your money. The park is sold and some new outfit takes it over, changes many things you took for granted. You are sort of held hostage where as with an RV you can be gone real quick! There is nothing wrong with a park model but it would never go on a rented lot, I would own the property that it would be on. I'm a control freak. That is why we use an RV, something sours us, hook up and we are gone. You could set up a fiver "permanent" and if problems come up you or someone else can hook it up be down the road. And you would still have more room than a park model. I think the fee in around the Yuma area for pulling a park model off the site is about $1500 and that doesn't include re-setting it. If you want to sell it, not only do you have to find somebody that likes your park model, but they also must like the park. So you are really trying to sell two things.

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I'm curious how many on the forum own these and whether you do so and still RV or maybe migrated to one after having had your fill of exploring in an RV? Also, to those who own park models, how do you like it?

 

We bought a park model in Lake Havasu City, AZ last March. We love it. We're spending our winters in it, but we still have our RV for the rest of the year.

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We almost bought a park model and changed our minds after staying in one for about a 3 months. You might want to rent one for a season before you decide. To me it was not insulted well enough and maybe it was the placement of the windows, but I felt "closed in". I would also talk to residents about annual rent increases, do you have to pay for trash pick up all year round even if you are gone those kinds of things. We stay at a park annually in AZ that has a large amount of park models, and have made friends with many of the residents. We hear their complaints about the things that have changed over the years and so I would say ask a lot of questions and write a pros and cons list.

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We presently are renting a park model in Florida after recently selling the motor home we were full timing out of. We are thinking through just what we are going to do next. The most likely alternative at this point is to buy something as a winter base in Florida and part time with a travel trailer in the summer months. The park we are renting in and may well buy in has both park models (max 500 sq ft in Florida) and sub 1,000 sq ft stick houses on deeded lots with a condominium association to manage the overall park. Some of the things we have observed:

 

The park model we are renting is nicely laid out and has adequate living space but does not have the storage that our motor home did. We are also having to rent a storage locker. But if we owned it, we likely could create storage space in the crawl space.

The stick houses in the park are moving up in value; the park models are ever depreciating.

Insurance is twice the cost on the park models than the stick houses and is much harder to find, but that could be a Florida thing.

We could have the same size stick house built for about the same price as a park model, but everyone seems to go larger when they do build so the cost of the stick houses is then more.

With the park models, you have to have stairways that intrude into the RV pad and that can be problematic if the lot/pad is small.

 

Given our learning to date, you likely can see the way we are leaning.

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