2018 Big changes

When life gives you lemons, go ride Lemonade!

Big Changes in Our Life

After several years of looking at RV’s we went and bought one. We have long talked about someday hitting the road permanently. We have gone to the RV sales promotions at various fairgrounds and stopped in at dealers during our travels. We had never seen any that we really, really liked. Last November we made another trip to the Oregon Coast for a weekend and on the way back stopped in at Guaranty RV in central Oregon. They had a 35 foot Newmar Class A that we really did like. We went on home and discussed the future. We are now on Newmar’s email list and in January we got the new catalog of models. For 2018 there was a brand new floor plan the we really, really loved. We had not seen this floor plan live but we had seen the cabinetry, bedroom and kitchen which we had liked and were all the same. The changes were in the living room and bathroom. Amazingly, the TV was in front of the couch (not off to one side like most RV’s) and the bathroom had dual sinks. It has three slide outs that give extra room. We talked some more and put money down on one. It would be built just for us and we could pick it up in five months. We put our house on the market.

When we bought our house in 2007 we bought at the top of the market. Not that we had a choice as our older house had burned down while we were spending the winter on the coast of Spain. Then the next year the housing bubble burst and our house was valued at half of what we had paid for it. As of this year (2018) the market has recovered and our house is worth more than we paid. We were fearful of another downturn in the market so we decided to sell while it was up and also that we had found an RV we liked. We got more than our asking price.

We listed with a nearby real estate company that had a very good reputation, although their price was higher than some others. We were living in a gated senior citizen community of 46 homes. The word spread that we were selling and a neighbor sent over a friend to look at it. They liked it and made an offer through our agent. Our agent found two more offers in the first week. Between the three of them our asking price was soon left behind. When the bidding was over the first couple had won. Our agent did a very good job for us and was definitely worth the higher price.

Then we had to move out. Our RV is still nearly 3 months away. We moved into a hotel for 3 weeks and then into a friend’s house for 6 weeks. We put lots of stuff in storage, sold a bunch of furniture and donated smaller stuff. I closed and sold my home brewery and am now buying beer.

When I started brewing about 25 years ago good beer was very hard to find. Then came the micro brewery revolution and it became easier and easier to get good beer. Now it is available in thousands of places in bottles, cans and on tap. One can even purchase tap beer to go in half gallon containers. So that is what we do now. I don’t any longer NEED to brew my own to get good beer.

An advantage to buying an RV new is that you can custom order it. We ordered it without a couch (The one included made into bunk beds and did not look comfortable.) so we could use the leather reclining loveseat from our house. We also did not get the RV mattress. We had a very good quality one in the guest bedroom that was hardly used. While in the dealership looking at the same size RV, with a different floor plan, I measured the door to see if it was possible to get them inside and was very happy to find out we could get them in.

Finally the big day arrived and we took delivery and headed home. I was a little nervous about driving it. I had not driven anything this large in about 50 years. One of my early jobs was a city bus driver and this RV was the same size as one of those buses. I found the RV easier to drive. The improvements in steering and suspension helped and driving on a freeway is much easier than in city traffic. As I write this we are on our second trip to the Oregon Coast and have put nearly a thousand miles on it in two months. It gets nearly 8 miles to the gallon and holds 80 gallons of gasoline. Filling it is a shock after traveling by motorcycle that gets 40 mpg and has a 6 gallon tank.

We think the guy who wired the RV was having a bad day. Most of the electrical outlets did not work. We contacted Guaranty RV and made an appointment for service. They were very cooperative and worked hard for two days to track down the problems. After putting in our order we had researched RV web sites for information on RV living. Many sites told of horror stories about service, both warranty and general service. We are happy to say that Guaranty is not in that group. They have worked diligently to solve our problems. We have also spent several thousand dollars with them on extras like satellite TV and a hitch to tow our car. They have answered all our questions and been very helpful in choosing the best for us in each situation.

We have now lived in it for two months and are very pleased with it. We will retire, again, at the end of the year and go full-time traveling. This time with indoor plumbing, unlike our tent trailer.

Follow along next year (2019). Arizona is our first destination for the rock and gem show in Quartzite.

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