May 20th is my first anniversary of financial independence, and it just so happens that around then I’ll be hitting the road in style. Before I dive into that, let me catch up on what’s happening up to that point.
I was living in Salt Lake City in a fantastic rental when I left my job in 2017. The complex was brand new and I was one of the first tenants in the place. My unit was on the top floor, so I had higher ceilings than the other floors which added a feeling of space to my ~450 square foot home. I had a small balcony, and a west facing view and could see all the way north to the Avenues neighborhood, and south to Point of the Mountain flight park. It was also perfect for viewing fireworks on the 4th of July and New Years Eve. As good as it was, I knew I wouldn’t be there for long.
A few years ago my dad said he wanted to eventually move down south to be close to his grand kids. The cost of living is also less, so it would also work out financially. I made a personal vow to be there to help him with the entire process. This is the the perfect use of FU money.
At the beginning of this year he decided to make it happen. My apartment lease was through February, but things were supposed to move quickly with his home sale. I wanted to give everything I had to ensure a smooth move, so I sold my furniture and packed everything I own into my compact car. Whatever didn’t fit that wasn’t important was either sold or donated.
Leaving Salt Lake City was pretty tough. I said goodbye to so many good things: a few great friends, an awesome volunteer gig, a hugely active vegan community, incredible skiing and snowboarding, among others. One of my favorite things to do was to hike and fly Mt. Wire with my buddy.
Even though it was hard to leave, I’m grateful to not be burdened by homeownership. The ability to simply pack up and go feels like a superpower.
I can always go back. But for now, I’m in Vermont.
It’s weird to have an extended stay in the place I already spent twenty-two years of my life. Not much has changed around here, but I guess that’s why some people like it.
My dad’s house was under contract to sell after four days of it being listed. We’re waiting on a closing date, and are both growing a bit impatient. I didn’t intend on being here for months. Just two, at the most, and that number is rapidly approaching. I’ll be ready to move on out of Vermont, and into the Tour Bus.
A good friend of mine broke it off with his fiancé and they both moved out of their apartment. Instead of finding a traditional space, he bought a brand new RV and has been full-timing for about a year now. His Thor Vegas – better known as the Tour Bus – is a short Class A that’s nimble enough to maneuver through most places, but big enough to live in comfortably full time.
I’ve been wanting to explore the lower 48 by van or RV for a while now. I’d originally planned on buying an older Class B, like a Roadtrek or Pleasure Way, but my friend is changing careers and won’t be living in the Tour Bus. He doesn’t want to store it, or take a loss selling it, and I don’t feel like dropping 30-50k on a used RV. After we talked for a while, he offered to have me rent it at the cost of his monthly payment.
Renting his Tour Bus is, financially, the lowest barrier to entry one can conceivably have for trying out the full time RV lifestyle. It’s super cheap at about $540 a month in rent, and should lend well to helping keep my spend rate low during the initial ten years of withdrawals. Especially if we mostly boon-dock on BLM land and/or don’t spend much time at campgrounds or RV parks.
What is this “we” shit?
Oh, right. I’m taking my girlfriend along for the ride! This is the first time I’ll be cohabiting with a significant other, and we’re gonna be in a twenty-five foot long vehicle.
Do you think that’s enough space for two people? We’ll just have to see. For now, it’s time to close on the old house, and start the drive down to Louisiana.