Can I live in an RV on my own property in Florida?

In this blog post, we will answer the following question: Can I live in an RV on my own property in Florida? We will review the law regarding parking and living in an RV on your own property in Florida. We will also discuss some aspects regarding RV life in Florida. 

Can I live in an RV on my own property in Florida?

You can live in an RV on your own property in Florida, as long as your vehicle is connected to water, power and a sewage system. You must also comply with local HOA rules. 

Here’s what the law says:

Recreational Vehicles (RVs) and camping equipment, trailers, trucks and motorhomes, designed and employed as temporary housing for recreational, camping, or travel uses may parking in open areas of properties that contain a single-family residence or duplex if the following conditions are met:

  • You can park on the property no more than one RV or camping gear;
  • Said vehicle may be owned or rented by the owner or tenant of the property in question, or by a visitor who is not a resident in Florida and is invited by the owner or tenant of the property, as long as parking is not for a period that exceeds 14 days.
  • The vehicle must be stored or parked in the backyard or side of the house, behind the line from the front of the building most distant from the street, but in no case further down the line from the front of the building closest to the street.
  • The RV must separate from the sidelines from the property at least the same distance as must be separated from the side of the main building, and should also be within 10 feet of the rear property boundary.
  • Said equipment and the parking area must be kept clean, cared for and presentable and will always be in functional condition.
  • At all times the RV must have a valid vehicle registration plate.
  • No major repairs or vehicle reconditioning works.
  • When parked on the property, the equipment may not be used as space for living or sleeping, or as a chore area household or storage and may not connect a service line, except for those that may be needed periodically to maintain the equipment and its accessories.
  • The equipment may not exceed 30 feet long, with a maximum height of 10 feet.
  • The equipment must be well tied up or fixed so that it is not a danger when there are strong winds or hurricanes.

HOA RV Parking Rules

The HOA RV parking rules will differ by state, but in most cases, you will not be able to park your RV:

  • In front of a hydrant, or in any way that makes access to the hydrant difficult in the event of a fire. 
  • In alleys, unless it is to unload passengers or cargo.
  • In your driveway or backyard for more than 48 hours.
  • On a corner or crosswalk.
  • Next to a parked car (double parking).
  • In front of a bus stopped in a tunnel.
  • On a bridge.
  • In one place for more than 72 hours (36 hours in some states).

HOA can restrict the parking of RVs on the street if they wish so. Of course, it will depend on the HOA and your relationship with them. 

The same rules apply to camping trailers, boats and even pop-up campers. The HOA RV parking rules prohibit even parking in your backyard for more than 24-48 hours or ban entirely parking in your driveway if the vehicle doesn’t fit entirely in and restricts access to the pathway. 

Can children live and travel in an RV in Florida? 

What could be better than travelling in a motorhome with the family? With children, this type of vehicle has many advantages, including:

– Be able to cook meals there,

– Always have everything you need at hand wherever you are (blanket, snack, etc.),

– Have access to an outdoor playground that is much more interesting than a hotel room,

– Have accessible toilets even on the road,

– Being able to take a nap where you want, when you want.

Children are generally delighted with this means of transport which is very different from their daily life. On the other hand, if you want to live with your children in an RV, you must ensure their wellbeing for the entire time. This means taking care of the following:

  • That each child has a separate place of sleep;
  • Each child has a seatbelt;
  • The children have access to the toilet facilities and other essential amenities;
  • The children are either attending a local school or registered as being homeschooled;
  • You must ensure doctor visits and the safety of your children at all times. 

If you plan on living full time in an RV, you must make parking arrangements. Most HOA does not allow stationing the vehicle in your backyard or driveway for more than two days. More similar rules apply in campsites also, which only allow you to park the RV for 10 or 11 consecutive months. 

RV Life in Florida, how does it work?

Florida is easily accessible by motorhome. There are many campsites, RV Parks and State Parks (wilder than the previous ones), all very well equipped with the services you need for this type of vehicle (water drain, electrical connections, toilets) with a barbecue and picnic table.

Best campsites  for RV long term living in Florida

The following campsites are the best for long-term living in an RV in Florida: Reserve America, Florida State Parks, Falling Waters State Park, Florida Caverns State Park and John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park. 

We especially recommend locations in Florida state parks. About fifty of them can accommodate RVs long-term. It is most often recommended to reserve your location at least 24 hours in advance.

Waking up in the middle of nature with breakfast under the trees, a walk and return in the evening to the mobile home in the heart of the Park: is an exceptional program for adults and children. 

Falling Waters State Park: Not far from Tallahassee, a small park with natural waterfalls as the main backdrop, including the highest in the state (don’t expect Niagara, we’re staying in Florida).

Florida Caverns State Park: Again, it’s not far from Tallahassee. This time, the theme of the park changes: it’s the caves. For those who love stalactites and stalagmites, this is the only park in Florida that offers this kind of tour. It’s a little too framed but splendid.

John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park: This time in the Keys. A paradise for lovers of mask and snorkel rides for underwater nature contemplation. To learn more, read our article on this park, John Pennekamp State Park… Nemo’s world is in Florida.

Renting an RV, if it is sometimes more economical than the car/hotel version, is still expensive. There is of course the rental itself, calculated per night, which varies from single to double depending on the holiday period or not. In general, prices start at $ 120 per night for a Class C.

Final thoughts

Some people are drawn to the idea of ​​living in an RV full time, even if they have kids. The decision to pack and live in an RV should be made carefully. You will need to consider the financial changes that come with making such a lifestyle decision, but mostly, you will have to make a plan for your children.

Please let us know if you have any questions or comments on the content. 

FAQ on Can I live in an RV on my own property in Florida?

Where can I park an RV?

An RV is perfectly entitled to park in the parking spaces along the roadway. However, its size must allow it, it must not interfere with road traffic or pedestrians. However, due to its size, the motorhome cannot park everywhere.

Where to stop with a motorhome?

A motorhome can stop in town in a parking space and spend the night there. It does not matter whether the motorhome operators are on board or not, as long as they comply with the regulations.

How to live year-round in a caravan?

To live year-round in a caravan and benefit from an address, registering with your local office is an idea. However, you must have a link with the municipality where you are making the request such as a place of stay on the date of the request, professional activity in the municipality, family ties.

Can you buy land and live in an RV?

Yes, you can buy land and live in an RV, but the legality of this will depend on the state you reside in. Most places do not allow one to live in an RV parked in their backyard, for example. 

Is it legal to live in an RV full time?

It is both legal and illegal to live in an RV full time. It all will depend on where you keep your RV parked and if you managed to make it your full address. You must speak with the HOA or/and the local council and ask whether you need a permit for it. 

Can you claim an RV as a primary residence?

In most states, you can claim an RV as a primary residence for tax purposes. As long as your RV has a bathroom/toilet, kitchen, bedroom – it is considered a home. 

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