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Old 02-13-2019, 10:09 PM   #21
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Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Elkhart Lake
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watching the house

This is our 6th year spending our winters in the south. We generally leave in late fall and return at the end of April. Since we live in the northern part of the rural country, we rely on propane for heat, which means I have to provide access for the propane to be delivered. When conditions warrant, I pay someone to plow and sand our driveway during the winter. I installed a transfer switch in our garage with an adjacent 8500 watt portable generator in the event of prolonged power failure. We don't have family to check on our home, but we have some remote neighbors and some friends that will check the house or start a generator, if necessary, lol. I have numerous security cameras and one thermostat that can be controlled by wifi. That means that I can view the house and surrounds and set temps, all from my smartphone. I keep all the other thermostats at a minimum of 50 degrees to give me some buffer in the event of furnace failure. We have hydronic heat, so can't drain the water system, although we turn off the water and water softener. Like most, we have our mail forwarded and rely heavily on wifi, both at home and while on the road. Most bills and concerns are dealt with on-line. We take all of our important paperwork with us in order to do our taxes and handle other matters that come up. We also travel with conceal and carry, just to be better prepared. In other words, each person has to thoroughly evaluate their situation and think things through and then determine your best plan to handle things while on the road and away from your home.

Regarding pets, we loved our dogs when we had them, but once the last one passed, we felt that we wouldn't get another, because we enjoyed our freedom and did not want to be restricted. Most RV couples that we run into, have their pets with them, and usually they're dogs versus cats. Our observations are that the larger pets need better grooming and bathing, but the smaller dogs, once left alone, bark or yip constantly until the owner comes back. I find the yipping really annoying to listen to and selfish on behalf of the owners to not train them better.
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Old 02-14-2019, 10:11 AM   #22
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Who takes care of the house?

We sold our house and moved in with one of our daughters and her family. We have our own In-law suite. It works out great for us and our 2 dogs. We take off for months at a time and never have to worry about the mail, the snow in the driveway, the wind storms and the not so nice people who like to help themselves to other people's stuff! The best part is that we get to be with our grandchildren every day when we are home.

As far as traveling with the dogs, we wouldn't do it without them. Fortunately they are well behaved and love seeing the country with us. They make new friends at every stop. In the 12 years that we have been RVing, we have only made one trip without at least one dog, almost. Before we got back home we rescued a new friend from a shelter and he has been traveling with use ever since.
Both dogs get very excited when we say "Camper!"

Just do what works best for you and you will Enjoy Camping!
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Old 02-14-2019, 10:15 AM   #23
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The post office will only hold mail for 30 days. For longer trips, I have the mail forwarded to my daughter's house. Pay all my bills on line. Stop the newspaper. Neighbor rotates his cars in and out of my driveway. Daughter stops by once a week to use our toilet and to make sure the house hasn't burnt down. No pets.
ATC/NAC Jerry A. Burkholder, USN (RET.)

Rule #1. The Chief is always right.
Rule #2. When in doubt, refer to rule #1.
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Old 02-14-2019, 12:05 PM   #24
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We leave the cold in Michigan right after Christmas until May 1st volunteering at State and Federal parks. We leave the Christmas tree up after Christmas eve with family. We leave early Christmas day, breeze through Chicago if going west after shutting off all the water. We drain the hot tub after Thanksgiving. We put three light timers all through the house to simulate our regular schedule, and super locks on slider doors, doors have keyed entry systems. Our son plows the driveway and keeps the mailbox cleared. All that, as well as great neighbors have kept our home safe.
We've traveled with a English Cocker Spaniel for the last 13 years with no problems. We carry all vet and shot records, as well as having him identity chipped. Jack died two days ago, but the moment the truck was hooked up or the the camper even in the drive he was right there ready to go. He rode in the truck with us, we used the MI State Police training tool and taught him to "take a break" when ever we made a rest stop. A large dog pillow in the back seat, 5 miles down the road and he was sacked out. We will miss him from here on as he was always a campground draw. Enjoy!
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Old 02-14-2019, 06:37 PM   #25
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Location: Bangor
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We have a 38 foot High Country 5th wheel and 2 large German Shepherds. We never travel without them and have taken them on 7 week round the country trips and are going on another long trip this summer. AS for who watches our home, well we have an alarm system and a =friend checks on it every few days. Our house is deep in the woods so no neighbors to speak of. No problems so far. Bearstop.
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Old 02-14-2019, 07:22 PM   #26
Jim Homer
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We go for a month at a time. We have neighbours who have a key to our house and check it regularly for insurance purposes. When they go away we watch their home, so has been working well. Mail is picked up by our neighbor and since it is a community mailbox not much of a problem.

We also have external cameras that alert us to any activity around our home with one indoor camera. Our alarm company is our last security device.

We travel with two Russian Blue cats who wouldn't let us leave the house until their leashes are on. Since we camp in a forty footer, they really enjoy going and I know we really enjoy having them with us.
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Old 02-19-2019, 12:19 PM   #27
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Everyone was so helpful with their suggestions. I am so glad to have thought to ask. A lot of the suggestions I had not thought of. So thank you all and maybe we will meet on the road!!
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Old 02-21-2019, 09:30 PM   #28
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B FT Before full time my wonderful neighbor told me he would mow our grass if he could use my riding mower to cut his I tried to pay hem, he refused Sold our house, made him a great deal on the rider, everyone is happy
2018 Montana High Country 331RL
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