If you’re one of those people who’ve decided that you wanted to live in an RV like me, you’ll probably be looking for the best small motorhomes to live in full time. But which one do you choose?
For starters, I suggest buying one that you can afford – and take it from there. See how you like it. I personally have a Class C RV, but what might work for me might not be for you. However, I am a solo traveler and I cannot imagine living in this size of RV with anyone.
Small RVs have multiple benefits. For instance, I can pack up and run my errands with it. I find it much easier than hauling around a large motorhome or trailer. And by now, I’m familiar with all the advantages and disadvantages that come with RV living.
I can boondock for about two weeks with it without moving. I was talking to other RVers with larger rigs and their limit is about two weeks as well. We all need to dump and fill about two weeks’ worth of water. We also need to get some food. So it’s no big deal.
For starters, it might be enough to go with a smaller motorhome. You might find it to be the perfect living situation for you. If you’re traveling solo, more or less, you’ll also be more comfortable driving a smaller rig. You can fit your stuff comfortably and can fit in campgrounds and parking spaces with more ease than larger RVs. Smaller motorhomes are also more affordable. Usually.
Getting a New or Used Small RV?
It’s great if you can buy a new RV. However, not everyone can afford it. If you have a budget, you can always purchase a brand new straight from the dealership, but as I’ve always suggested, it’s more ideal if you buy something you can afford. However, if you’re on a limited budget, you can always get a used RV.
Unfortunately, there’s no quality control in the RV industry. Down the line, all new RVs may have issues after rolling them out of the dealership. As for used RVs, they might have issues before you get them, but it depends on the previous owner. See my friend Amber’s video on RV quality control problems here.
When buying a used RV, I suggest that you get a 2-3-year-old RV. This is your best bet. You can find a used RV that fits your budget and is within your timeframe. The owner most likely has already taken care of the bugs and hopefully kept it this long because they were happy with it afterward.
What is a Small RV?
A small RV is considered to be one that has a length of less than 25 feet. This means that Class A RVs are out of the picture, but there is plenty of Class B and Class C motorhomes just waiting to get on the road with you.
When it comes to size, a Class A is like a bus, it can be long and bulky with a great deal of room inside. In comparison, Class B RVs are relatively compact. They have more space compared to regular passenger vehicles though. Class C motorhomes are usually longer and bigger than most Class B RVs but shorter than Class A. This is not always true though, you can find Class A RVs under 30 feet.
The choice is yours. You may like a Class B RV or even a Class C motorhome. At the end of the day, it’s all about what you’re looking for and how much you can afford to spend on your new home away from home.
After consideration of mileage, cost, maintenance, and consumer reviews, the best small RVs to live in my opinion are below.
#1. Thor Chateau Class C Motorhome
The Chateau has 10-floor plans you can choose from to give you a unique feel of your own. The Ford E-series chassis is durable, reliable, and stable with automatic level jacks and an electric stabilizing system. You get a power awning off the roof along with an exterior TV and Wi-Fi ranger ideal for any tailgating parties. The leatherette dinette booth is one of the most popular features and the kitchen comes with all the cabinets you could need as well as a fridge and stove.
The Chateau is known for its upscale luxuries and spacious floor plan. The Ford E-350 chassis ensures you are getting the power, durability, storage space, and stability needed to drive this small RV around with peace of mind. Its size improves fuel economy so you can stay on the road longer.
#2. Coachmen Galleria Class B Motorhome
With 4 different floor plans all just a little shy of 25 feet, space to sleep two people at most, and interior vinyl walls, there is so much to love about this RV. This model is affordable for Class B and still offers quite a bit of luxury. Along with a dinette, kitchen, and bathroom, you get a backup camper, electronic stability system, collision avoidance indicator and high beam assist to make driving this RV easy as can be.
Moreover, it comes with an ultra-smooth ride thanks to the Reflex Steer Assist which makes it easy to drive in parking lots and narrow roads. The aluminum chassis is lightweight, corrosion-resistant, and protects against road shock for a more comfortable drive.
#3. Gulf Stream Conquest Class C Motorhome
This Class C is one of the best sleeping up to 6 people where most small RVs can only accommodate up to 4. Complete with Roanoke light cherry cabinets and luxury-looking interior fabrics, this Class C could easily be a Class A. The basement storage and slideout room make it look bigger than it is and give you all the space you need. You still have an easy-to-drive small motorhome when it is time to hit the road.
When it comes to creating a luxury Class C, Gulf Stream gets it right. The Conquest has all the features for maximum comfort as well as an impressive list of standard equipment.
#4. Dynamax Isata 3 Class C Motorhome
The Isata 3 gives you a choice of 3 floorplans, each very unique from the others. One style gives you a bunkhouse while another gives you a slide-out. You end up with more space than you would expect and comfort you can appreciate. As one of the most fuel-efficient motorhomes, the Isata averages between 12 and 15 mpg. It also comes with leatherette driving seats, dark tinted windows, a custom full-body paint package, premium vinyl flooring, Italian cabinetry, and all the usual motorhome basics like a dinette, kitchen, and bathroom.
This spacious, luxurious Dynamax Isata 3 Class C motorhome is perfect for full-time RV living. It features a Mercedes-Benz chassis, contemporary frameless windows, an aluminum truss structured roof with crowned one-piece fiberglass skin, and MaxxAir power vents to keep you comfortable on chilly nights.
There is also the Truma AquaGo water heater with hybrid technology and dual AGM maintenance-free house batteries. The generous storage makes this a great choice as your next home away from home.
#5. Entegra Odyssey Class C Motorhome
With 7 different floorplans, you get slide-outs that sleep five making it more versatile than other small motorhomes. One of the more affordable motorhomes, the Odyssey is a great first RV for beginners looking to hit the road. The frame and interior are durable and you get TVs in the bunk area, dinette, kitchen, bathroom, power anti-lock brakes a powerful air conditioner, and furnace.
The Entegra Odyssey is an affordable, high-quality motorhome with many luxury features to make travel enjoyable. These features include a Corian solid-surface kitchen countertop, 100% adhesion residential sealant, and fully bonded fiberglass around the whole RV. It also comes with an automatic transmission, a power inverter, and a package that includes exterior entertainment center with 12V outlet.
Things to Remember When Looking for Small RVs
There are more small motorhomes out there than you will know what to do with, making it a real challenge to find the right one. These top 5 are a great place to start your shopping. It is important to always do your own research first and decide what matters to you before picking an RV. It needs to have the features that are important to you and it needs to stay within your budget. Whatever your needs and whatever your budget, there is one thing you can be sure of when getting a small motorhome; good things really do come in small packages.
While I’ve made some suggestions based on pricing and convenience, remember that no RV is the same and you will need to do some research on your own. Some may feel more comfortable in a Class B with amenities like a diesel engine and full body paint while others may enjoy the storage and power of a Class C.
If you aren’t sure what you’d like best, look at several different types and styles. Most sales professionals will allow you to take a test drive and go for a spin so you can see how it feels behind the wheel.
Some things you may need to remember when looking for an RV:
- How much storage do I need?
- How much power do I need?
- How much sleeping space do I need?
- How often am I going to use my RV and where will I be staying when in it?
- Do you want a Class A, Class B, or Class C Motorhome? There are pros and cons to all three.
- What kind of amenities would make me most comfortable? (e.g.: diesel engine, heating, and air conditioning)
- What kind of features would make my trips easier?
- Safety is also an important factor to consider. Do you want anti-lock brakes and a power inverter?
A lot of the pros or cons for any RV will depend on your lifestyle and what works best for you. Be honest with yourself about what is truly important to have in an RV.
If you are just beginning, this article may help you get started on the right foot when buying your first RV. This short list of small RVs can help you get your feet wet and feel more confident when shopping for an RV. Once you answer all these questions, it’ll be time to start shopping! You can use this list as a great starting point and hopefully find something that fits your needs and budget well. The important thing is to enjoy the RVing life. Your new RV is your home away from home, so be sure you are happy with the choice you make.