RVFTA #195 Downsizing Your RV with Joe and Kait Russo

The RV Atlas Podcast
RVFTA #195 Downsizing Your RV with Joe and Kait Russo

The common trajectory for RVers is to start small, say with a pop up camper, and then move up into larger trailers or motorhomes. However, we’ve noticed a trend emerging over the past few years amongst our fellow campers: downsizing your RV.

More and more folks are looking to ditch those big rigs and find RVs that are smaller, lighter, and more maneuverable. We’ve personally felt the tug towards downsizing after we personally experienced the limitations of a 34-foot rig. Don’t get us wrong…we adore being in the Toy Hauler. We just also want to get into the tiny, beautiful state park campgrounds that only fit rigs under 30 feet!

On this episode, we invited Joe and Kait Russo from We are The Russos onto the show to tell their story about downsizing from a Class A motorhome towing a Jeep wrangler to a Class B Van. They’ll give us the skinny on small RV lifestyle.

Thinking about downsizing your RV? You’ve got to hear all about their journey!

Segment One: Meet Joe and Kait Russo


In the first segment of the show, Joe and Kait give us the back story on how they ended up living the full-time RV lifestyle. Back in 2014, they were living and working in California, spending over an hour an a half commuting to work each day. Time at home was spent on emails and other work overflow. They might have been successful, but they certainly didn’t feel fulfilled.

Enter Kait’s big idea.

We are always so interested in hearing about how people transition from the first suggestion of full-time nomadic living to the actual reality of purchasing and moving into an RV. This year, we have carved out space in our podcast to tell a variety of these different stories. It was inspiring to hear Joe and Kait honestly discuss how their relationship had to evolve within their new living circumstances. We also loved hearing how their ideas about ‘stuff’ changed over the past few years. If you’re thinking about downsizing your RV, you’ll appreciate this discussion a lot!

Joe recently published a book, Take Risks, which tells the story of this journey towards living as full-time RVers. The title was inspired by advice from Joe’s late father, and clearly Joe and Kait took his words to heart. Chronologically, the book takes the reader up to the moment when they actually hit the road.

We’re looking forward to the sequel!

Segment Two: Pros and Cons of Downsizing Your RV

In this segment, we get big picture with Joe and Kait, talking about the lessons they have learned from their downsizing journey. Here’s a quick run down, but you can listen to hear us discuss each of these topics…

Pros of Downsizing Your RV to a Class B:

  • Park (almost) anywhere
  • No need for a toad (a vehicle towed behind a motorized rig!)
  • Take your home everywhere with you
  • Better gas mileage
  • Better driving experience
  • Safer than other motorized options (crash tested, etc.)
  • Less stuff!

Cons of Downsizing Your RV to a Class B:

  • Less room for couples, children, etc.
  • Limited head room for taller folks
  • Minimal cargo space

Segment Three: Our Thoughts on Downsizing

Personally, we’ve been doing the opposite of downsizing for the last eight years, and we have learned some lessons on our RV purchase journey.

If you want a bit more background on the RVs we’ve owned, check out our pop up camper content first. You can see our thoughts on pop up campers in this post, and find links to lots of our pop up camper podcast episodes. We also talk about our Whitehawk travel trailer, and you can hear all the details about that rig here. Then there was the gigantic upsizing episode of 2017 when we welcomed Buck the Toy Hauler into the family. That whole story can be found here.

All of that to say we ended up learning what our maximum-sized RV is this year. We love so many things about our toy hauler, but the length, width, and height is honestly bigger than we are 100% comfortable with. It’s been a great learning experience for us, because now we know that in the future we will be downsizing our RV the next time we shop for a new rig.

And for the record, that isn’t anytime soon.

We would love to hear your thoughts on downsizing your RV. Have you been considering it yourself? Did you already take the leap and move to a smaller RV? What’s your downsizing story?

We’ll see you at the campground,

Stephanie + Jeremy

The RV Atlas Podcast
RVFTA #195 Downsizing Your RV with Joe and Kait Russo

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