Living in a caravan

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  • My girlfriend and I are seriously considering living in a touring caravan for a few years.


    We're about to go bankrupt, so renting is difficult and as we'll both be starting uni in September we need to move from our current house. We have 2 small dogs too, so the odds are stacked against us.


    We've found 1 site that will let us stay indefinitely, but don't mind moving every 28 days if we have to.


    I'm just a bit worried that we'll freeze in winter, or the caravan will be damp, or we'll get cabin fever. Actually, I know the space issue would be fine, but I'm quite worried that people will think WHAT!?!?! even though I know that's just my mainstream-society-brainwashed-mind.


    So, is anyone caravanning it and can offer any advice or tips please?

    .:: purplepants ::.
    "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do.
    So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Explore. Dream. Discover." -- Mark Twain

  • I did it for two years and the most anoying bit was stashing and moving stuff constantly (not v tidy person) and weirdly what really sticks with me even now backache from no where proper to sit inside mostly used to sit outside. Dogs have to be trained to wipe their feet if poss. On the whole I liked it got up early, only did what I wanted with the excuse ''cause I live in a caravan'' tee hee. I did a course but most studied in the libary, dare say tech stuff will make it different now. The cold may be an issue as caravans are not insulated for constant winter use, think thats why I used to go to bed early, stove is a real advantage to dry the air, as there is a lot of condensation. Last 6 months had perfect solution one living van one sleeping van there by avoiding loads of cooking and body condensation. I say good luck and give it whirl. (oh caravan living makes you ramble):)

  • A ramble? Hehe.


    We have a small dehumidifier which may help with the condensation as unfortunately we cannot afford a stove (would be lovely!!)

    .:: purplepants ::.
    "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do.
    So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Explore. Dream. Discover." -- Mark Twain

  • Post by purplepants ().

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  • Ooo perhaps we'll look into it then, although funds are extremely limited (hence the bankruptcy!) And we dont even own a caravan yet!!

    .:: purplepants ::.
    "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do.
    So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Explore. Dream. Discover." -- Mark Twain

  • When you are living in a caravan you have to decide what is really essential. I have one knife (a professional one ) a potato peeler, a small chopping board, a steamer, and a cast iron frying-pan. In other words you can only do a limited variety of cooking.


    Some tools a handy to have like a drill and drill-bits, screw drivers, a pop-riveter (very handy for a caravan), a panel saw, files etc.

  • I've been living in a caravan for the last 4 years. I have to say winter is hard. damp cold and difficult to keep warm. Wearing extra clothes, wrapping up in a blanket at night before bed and even early morning , if not fully dressed. Water freezing up, olive oil solid for days on end. Difficult to dry your washing. I do have a woodburner, but its often out by morning, unless I invest in coal or feed it wood at god dam unearthly times of night/morning. Constant worry in high winds. Spring, summer, autumn its heaven. To share a small space with two wet, stinky dogs in winter may be a little too much. My dogs used to stay tethered to the outside of all my live ins. on extremely cold nights only, would the dogs would come inside . Go for it, If you are on a site and have all the facilities, like electric, hot running water (toilet block etc) it would be quite easy to get through the hardest of winter nights. Good luck if you do it.

  • After reading Alices Wonderland post, makes me wonder is living in a caravan like giving birth (forget all the bad bits), or did I not mention my caravan was tethered mainly for my piece of mind, but did occasionally feel like it was at sea, rock a bye. Also it was on big blocks for when it flooded, which I used to like ducks swim to say ''Bread Now'', kind hearted people coming to the rescue invite them in for tea. Thinking back I kinda of liked some of the bad it was all part of being in the landscape. Could give you loads of top tips but the best tips are the ones you make yourselves. Have fun

  • I lived in a caravan with my two eldest. Kids when they were little
    I loved it
    Was hardwork but great
    Had to bath them in a gorilla bucket and handwash all our clothes
    It was a static so I grew veggies round the back
    Had a burner and made loads of diff meals
    Don't really remember winters being too hazardous
    Think the main prob was wet clothing
    We were next to a stream and about 3 miles to the nearest shop I used to walk everyday to get supplies
    And stop off at a little park with kids


    Mind you my eldest is now 30 so it was a long time ago
    Maybe I have a selective memory lol
    But I know it's doable
    I have lived in some right strange old places and I think were ever you are it's what you make it and I have always had fun I treat it as an adventure
    The only place I have ever wanted to run from is this bloody house

  • One guy who worked for me for a few years had a campervan, and trailed a small car behind, he used to move round the campsites regularly, on the odd occasion he parked up for a night in the firms car park, usually when he was headed back up north foe a weeks break. He has now bought a place in portugal and rebuilt the house. (still does some agency work from there)
    Grendel

  • Rogue Trader - blimey, that makes it sound grim!! lol Mind you, I do realise that its not all plain sailing, especially in winter. Our house was pretty damp so we know all about the problems of drying clothes and that horrid smell they get. I think we'd make use of the tumble driers at the launderette to save the hassle!


    I'd love to live in a static and have the space to grow veggies...we had just cleared the end of our garden for a veggie patch before we moved so we have yet to do that.


    My girlfriend has tonight been reading about insulation, adding plyboard and expanding foam...so I think we're going to read a bit more about that.


    Thank you for the advice and tips and stories - much appreciated :)

    .:: purplepants ::.
    "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do.
    So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Explore. Dream. Discover." -- Mark Twain

  • If you can afford it use kingspan insulation! I've used 50mm throughout my bus and anybody who has been in it will tell you just how warm it is in winter! With the wood burner lit and the dampers open about 2/3's it gets to 23/26 degrees on an eve when the outside temp is well below 0, and for an idea on size its 28ft long and 8ft wide!

  • Sensi the washing and drying must have be en hard with lil uns. Did u wash nappies too? How long did u live in a caravan? Summat id love to do but cant uproot x

  • Go for a german made trailer if possible, much better made and insulated. A second smaller one for your tat - and dogs? - would be useful. A wood burner is much nicer than gas heating and will dry your washing in no time! Melvin.

  • Having caravaned in the uk for the past 34 years at all times of the year buy a post 2000 van and you should be ok in the winter, I would try to get a site with a hookup as electrical heating gives off no condensation and a lot of CC&C sites and Caravan CLs will do a deal for long stay even though you may have to move every 30 days.


    Best of luck


    Oldeng

  • Sensi the washing and drying must have be en hard with lil uns. Did u wash nappies too? How long did u live in a caravan? Summat id love to do but cant uproot x

    Hi Hun I had Lynda in disposables as she was potty training and in knickers a lot Sarah was in Terry towelling squares as she was allergic to nappies Prior to the caravan I had them both in Terry nappies I used to soak the nappies then take them to the showers And wash them in there rigged a washing line up at the back of caravan for drying If we had a few rainy days used to get Sarah in a front baby carrier Lynda in the framed back carrier rucksac full and off to the nearest launderette to dry No wonder I have a bad back now lolWent to many a festie carrying kids like thAt and my small tent and supplies lol But the caravan living was awesome cause the kids spent so much time outside with nature and learnt lots I'd do it again tomorrow

  • Sounds fab life hun wud love to try it myself. Sienna is in washables as were the other two. Sienna is allergic to sposies n im allergic to plastic. U must have had muscles like steel hun x

  • Ooo perhaps we'll look into it then, although funds are extremely limited (hence the bankruptcy!) And we dont even own a caravan yet!!

    Dont worry about it...just go for it....ive been living in a caravan for years now,and im still alive. If you are going on a holiday park check they will allow burners before buying one...alot dont. Its not that bad in winter,its only like living in a house....if its cold you put the heating on.