Long before we actually hit the road, we started our research on mail, registration taxes, voting, gun laws, etc. We had questions, concerns, and doubts. I should give you a little background and insight into our lives prior to Full-Time RVing.
My husband and I are old school regarding saving and filing paperwork. In part, one of us used to be a packrat and one of us had a construction business. My husband (packrat) worked for El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office for twenty-nine years. He had EVERY single pay stub since the day they hired him. I had a construction business for what seemed like a hundred years and I had EVERY invoice and receipt. We often joked, “We don’t get rid of stuff, we just build more outbuildings”.
When we started our journey to go Full-Time RVing, I took all the unnecessary paperwork to Shred-It and watched as they turned it into paper dust, and eventually, it would be turned into pulp.
We put most of our bills online, except for a couple that would go away when we sold the house. Bills like waste management and the water bill. This was a tremendous step to our RV Lifestyle, but there was so much more to do and research.
As a content creator, I turned to my peers for this. I watched countless videos on what to do for our mail. Here are a couple of videos for you to check out.
Most of our questions about the mail service were answered by researching by this method. But we still had insurance costs, registration regulations and fees, gun laws, and more on our list of research.
After living in California for our entire lives, we wanted to be free from the high taxes. We knew we wanted to domicile (Domicile; A state a person considers their home) in a state without an income tax. We concentrated our research on states without an income tax. But there were other factors to take into consideration. For our rig, for instance, we knew we didn’t want to have a special license to operate it. I know, for those of you who are reading this and know I’m a retired truck driver, know I have the license to operate an RV of any size. The thing is, I don’t want to HAVE to drive every time we move the rig. Also, inspections and registration fees were other deciding factors as well. Then there was sales tax to consider, not that we are planning on buying a different rig, but you never know. Therefore, if we were to purchase a different rig, the sales tax would be based on our domicile state. And we also had to think of the difficulties and/or ease of the domicile process in the different locations we were considering. Right, wrong, or indifferent, we checked off four of the states without further thought, simply over taxes or location. We got it down to three states, Texas, Florida, and South Dakota. Right off the bat, we checked off Texas because of their vehicle inspection and registration fees. Florida was out because of its high insurance rates. Which left us with South Dakota. To be honest, South Dakota won out for several reasons not related to any financial matters. We love the state of South Dakota and wanted to spend a good deal of time there, which made the decision easier.
On the “ease” of this process, I would say the mail service (America’s Mailbox https://americasmailbox.com/) we went with made it quite easy. However, we had a few hiccups with registering our vehicles. Once we realized there was an issue with our registration not being completed (for over a month) we picked the paperwork up and took it to the county treasurer ourselves. Taking our original purchase agreement with us, we completed it within 30 minutes. It was so easy. There is simply no reason to pay for a service to complete the process. Getting our driver’s license was also incredibly easy. We have never been to a DMV without it taking half a day and still needing to wait six to eight weeks for it to arrive in the mail. We literally walked into the DMV with our Americas Mailbox receipt, showing our mail service address, our California driver’s license, and my passport (for my real I.D., Andy already had his real I.D.) And we walked out 37 minutes later with our South Dakota driver’s license.
What you need to bring with you to DMV;
*First- You need your current driver’s license. (It isn’t necessary to bring your passport as a second form of I.D.)
*Second- You need a receipt with your name and address on it from your mail service
*Third- You need a receipt of where you stayed (Hotel, RV park, B&B, etc) This receipt should show at least one night of accommodations to show residency.
If you want a Concealed Pistol Permit that is recognized in 37 states of the union, a permit is required.
You can visit the link for more details. https://sdsos.gov/general-services/concealed-pistol-permits/cc-default.aspx
However, you must physically live in and be a resident of the county where the application is being made for at least thirty days immediately preceding the date of the application;
When you visit the Sherrif Office, bring a receipt of your RV park invoice or hotel receipt that shows you have been a resident for at least thirty days.
Until we actually started moving from one RV park to another or traveling daily, we didn’t know exactly how inconvenient some things were going to be or, conversely, how some things were no big deal. And most things were no big deal. When we wanted our mail forwarded, we ask the RV park if they allowed packages and mail to be delivered, when we made our reservations (we made this a habit every time we make reservations). Most RV parks allow packages and mail, but surprisingly, there are some that don’t.
I hope this was helpful, if you have any questions please email me at; email@example.com
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