Where Can I Park My RV Long Term Near Me? - Read Experts Things
Local laws intended to control vagrants and the homeless are regularly used against those living in their cars. Ironically, these laws often get used against RV owners, though they typically live in something far nicer than a rundown apartment and generally have full amenities like a kitchen and bathroom.
These laws make it hard to find a place to park your RV long-term much less live in it at the same time.
Where can I park my RV long term?
01. Your Own Property
If you own the property, there is a good chance you can park the RV (recreational vehicles) there long term. Many home owners’ associations won’t let you park an RV on the street long term, since it is taking up valuable parking.
In front of your home
Parking in your driveway in front of your home is more likely to be approved, though some home owners’ associations set time limits on this for aesthetic reasons. If you can park it in a covered garage or behind the house,
there is generally no restriction on how long it can be stored there because it isn’t visible. If you own rural land, there is almost no issue with parking the RV there long-term or indefinitely.
However, this situation nearly guarantees you won’t have water, electric or sewer connections. You may not be able to arrange for the local government to set these up, either,
because you don’t have a permanent home on the property. If you look for land that already has utilities, then that isn’t an issue. Or you could go off the grid entirely.
02. A Friend or Relative’s Property
Just as a visitor can park their car in front of your house for a period of time, you can probably park your RV in front of a relative’s home for a while.
You may be able to park an RV in a relative’s garage or driveway for weeks on end, though there may be restrictions on your ability to live there at the same time.
Zoning laws may prevent you from living in the RV if it is parked in the backyard, too.
In a mother-in-law addition
If you’re staying in their home or a mother-in-law addition instead of the RV, then you may be allowed to stay until you wear out their welcome.
If you’re struggling to find a place to stay or don’t want to impose on family, join online clubs that connect you with land owners who will let you stay on private property.
You’ll certainly find somewhere to stay a few days, though don’t expect to stay for six months.
03. RV Parks / Caravan Parks
RV parks are campsites designed for RV owners to stay at, whether they want to stay for a few days or several months. An RV park may be just for recreational vehicles, though many include campgrounds for those who want to pitch a tent, too.
After all, if you already have water and electric hookups for RVs and probably laundry facilities, too, why not set aside some open ground for campers? RV parks cater specifically to RV owners.You’ll always find water, AC and sewer connections. You’ll probably get cell phone service and wi-fi.
Because these parks are designed for RV owners, they design it to provide the services RV owners need.
For an example
For example, they’ll generally have a bathhouse. Now you can take a long hot shower you can’t in the RV because the water tank was running low. Laundry facilities are almost standard, given that you have to have a high end RV to have a washer and dryer.
Others use the laundry facilities because you can simply get so much more done in a short period of time. Many RV parks have a convenience store for buying whatever you need. They generally have barbecue areas, picnic tables and playground equipment.
Swimming pools and recreation halls are less common.
RV parks may be called caravan parks or campgrounds. However, not all campgrounds have spaces for RVs. Some campgrounds have a spot where an RV could park but lack the hookups RVs need unless you’re dry camping.
A trailer park or “motor home park” may or may not host RVs. Some trailer parks will rent to RVs, but mobile home owners often stay at the mobile home park permanently.
Mobile home owners rarely move and may only be visited once a month to collect the rent. RV parks have a constant turnover of people staying a few days or weeks, and they require more amenities.
RV management costs
The lower overall management costs of a mobile home park mean that you’ll pay less per month to stay in one if you can actually stay there.
If you’re looking for a place to park your RV long term, don’t assume that a campground or mobile home park will let you stay long-term or even have the facilities for a short term stay, but something in this category may work.
Continue your research
And do your research, because there are a surprising number of urban RV parks out there. If you’re not sure, start by looking for large truck stops, since an owner may simply add some permanent parking spaces to let someone stay for an extended period of time.
All else fails, the truck stop probably has showers and laundry facilities in addition to gas and supplies.
05. Self-Storage Units
An estimated ten percent of the population pays for self-storage units. What many don’t know is that they can store far more than your boxes of Christmas decorations and the stuff from Mom’s estate you haven’t had the heart to sort through.
A number of self-storage facilities will store vehicles. Many will store a car while you’re deployed overseas or traveling for a few months for work. And some of them will store a recreational vehicle.
Outdoor RV storage option
The cheaper option is outdoor RV storage. You simply park it and leave it. This is an affordable, viable solution for someone staying at a timeshare, condo or relative’s apartment lacking parking for an RV or that outright prohibits it.
You’ll pay more for indoor RV storage, since covered space is at a premium.
A few storage facilities let you park an RV in an indoor heated space. This spares you from the need to winterize the vehicle while protecting it from the elements as well as protects it from storms.
Note that not all storage facilities can accommodate a Class A RV unless specifically built for that purpose.
A number of benefits
In all cases, storing an RV at a storage facility comes with a number of benefits. Security is one, since the facility has at a minimum a fence around it. The RV is certainly safer than if left parked on the street or in the driveway.
You’ll retain access to the RV, though it isn’t as convenient as if it were parked outside the front door. You may have to hunt for a facility in your area that offers RV parking long-term.
A potential downside
Unlike RV parks or a pad on your own property, you can’t live in it while it is parked there. There is a potential downside to parking an RV in a storage facility, and that’s what happens if you forget to pay the bill.
If you don’t pay the storage fees, the RV place will try to contact you to collect. If they can’t reach you, many jurisdictions let them sell the items in storage to free up the unit.
Don’t pay your monthly bill for several weeks, and your RV could be sold to someone at auction to pay the bill.
06. Municipal Airports
If there’s one thing airports have, it is lots of concrete slab. You can find many municipal airports that provide onsite camping facilities, since private pilots are probably going to need showers and laundry facilities, too.
You could stay for a few nights, though fewer allow for a long-term stay. Do your research for RV parking near major airports, too. There are RV parks and RV storage facilities near many major airports that cater to the RVer who wants to park the RV for an extended period of time while they fly out to visit family.
Conversely, there are a few known communities of RVers that essentially work at the airport, since there isn’t much point in paying for rent on a large apartment when you fly all the time for work.
07. Military Installations
A number of military bases allow active duty vets, reservists and retired veterans to park RVs next to their recreation facilities. Some of them are open to any government employees.
Others will even permit civilians to park for parts of the year; for example, you may be allowed to stay on campsites in walking distance of bathrooms and showers knowing that it is off-limits when they’re practicing firing ordinance.
If you’re a vet, this can be a lifesaver since it gives you access to long-term parking at low or no cost, access to the commissary and maybe even the local VA clinic.
The amenities are certainly going to rival that of state parks, and security is far better.
About half of all Elk Lodges and Moose Lodges have RV accommodations of some type on their property. If you’re a member in good standing, you’d be allowed to park on the back parking lot for free.
Depending on the individual lodge, non-members may be allowed to stay there short term.
09. City Lots
California’s insane housing prices are well-known. What isn’t as well known is the number of cities that have decided to stop making it illegal to live in your car and set up approved lots instead.
Some of these lots are for the homeless living in cars not designed for that purpose, while a few have set aside spots for permanent RV dwellers, too.
This is an option for someone who lives in their RV full time but isn’t going anywhere soon.
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