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Old 12-23-2021, 03:41 PM   #1
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Many people seem to be making their RV trailers into small homes and calling themselves full timers. Some are purchasing them new, never to be used on the road.

In our travels we have taken notice of residential sections of large RV parks. And, sure enough a high percentage of them are TTs and 5th wheels. However, up in the northern states the RV park models are popular. I donít know why but maybe itís because they are easier to insulate.

Anyway, here is a picture I took while traveling in NH.

Itís my guess that because they are basically an RV and sold as an RV they would be registered as an RV.

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Old 12-23-2021, 04:28 PM   #2
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A couple years ago I did an extended stay in Houston at an RV park and there was a section for those park model "RVs". They seemed to be more small single wides than RV but never went in one. I believe the main difference I deduced was the A/C unit was outside the structure. They also had "residential" RVs that were intended to be parked but were more along the lines of an RV with the A/C on the roof... think Keystone has sold them.
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Old 12-23-2021, 05:00 PM   #3
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In the past, Park Models came with a sliding patio door as the main entry door. They did not have holding tanks as they were intended to be plumbed directly into a sewer system. The toilet was a residential flush toilet, with the tank that hold water, and they all had residential refrigerators. They were intended to "park" but still have a similar feel as a travel trailer.

Time changed and travel trailers, fifth wheels, and even motor homes are now equipped with residential refrigerators, and have come around resembling a stick and brick house on wheels, but retained the standard features of any RV.

Fast forward again, and more and more fifth wheels and travel trailers, and motor homes, are now being factory equipped with all electric stoves, hot water systems, and refrigerators. Again, blurring the lines between Park Model and transient RV even more.

Meanwhile, Park Models are now equipped with push peddle toilets and holding tanks. Thus blurring the lines again between Park Model and RV.

As travel trailers and fifth wheels become more and more like a house, they can (and are) set up permanently in Park Model sites and seasonal campground sites. The lines are blurred even more and more.

Park Models usually have a full front residential style set of windows. This is another item that separated them from RV's. But even now, some travel trailers and fifth wheels have introduced the front window again, although they are advertised to be automobile grade windows, like an automobile windshield. I certain hope they are, because I have one in my fifth wheel.

More and more travel trailer and fifth wheel brands are advertising their models for full time living. I learned what that means is .... yes they are designed for full time "living", but not full time traveling! If they never move, they are great. When they hit the road, they fall apart.

The lines are blurred. I suppose it's up to the campground, or the RV park if they accept any certain type of trailer, RV, or fifth wheel for long term parking.
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Old 12-23-2021, 06:37 PM   #4
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It's all about "regulatory requirements, governmental oversight, HUD standards and local government rules/laws"....

HUD defines a "manufactured home" as larger than 400 square feet of living space.

The RV industry defines a "park model" or an "RV" as "no larger than 400 square feet" and since it's not a "manufactured home" it doesn't have to meet the minimum HUD requirements for energy, insulation, building standards or "minimum structure requirements"... Think about the hurricane building codes for "manufactured homes" in Florida.... They don't apply to "park models" which are "classified as mobile" so they can be "moved out of harm's way"..... At least that's what "they claim"....

It's pretty much a "shell game" to build products without government requirements and to skirt the requirements established for "full time living" and a way to get around the local building codes by calling them "recreational homes".....

Here's one of hundreds of articles about the differences and similarities:

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