Best Class A Motorhomes for Full Time Living – 2021 Guide

| Last Updated: March 11, 2021

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There are many reasons to choose to stay in an RV over a physical house or apartment complex.

This article covers many of the questions you have and looks at which models are the best Class A motorhomes for full-time living.

We’ll answer a few of the questions you may have, and with careful consideration, you’ll find the best match for you.

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What Makes a Class A Motorhome Great for Full-Time Living?

Several reasons make living in a motorhome full-time a cozier idea than renting or buying a house. These benefits range from the freedom of choosing where you live and the ability to pack up at any time to the lack of a need to pay off a large mortgage. Class A motorhomes are also more spacious and ideal than any of the other classes.

Space

Class A motorhomes are often the larger of all the types of RVs available and offer more living space. This makes it more comparable to a small apartment as you’ll have a bedroom area, a small kitchenette, and even a lounge space. Additionally, many of the best Class A motorhomes for a full-time living have an outdoor TV that’s ideal for when you have a lot of company.

Freedom to Travel

Having a motorhome is ideal if you enjoy traveling as you can quickly pack up your entire living space. Additionally, as Class A RVs have a great engine, all you need is proper maintenance and you can live anywhere across the country. 

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Cost of Living

While living in a motorhome, there’s no expensive cost such as paying off a mortgage from purchasing a house. There’s also no cost for constantly being connected to the electricity grid. 

Easy to Sell

If you tire of living in an RV, it’s extremely easy to sell. Many people are searching for motorhomes and often consider purchasing Class A models secondhand if they’ve been maintained well.

Review of the Best Class a Motorhomes for Full-Time Living

The following RVs are the best Class A motorhomes available for full-time living that you can currently purchase from the market. There are options for various costs and dimensions that are sure to fit your needs. 

Pros

  • Padded ceiling
  • Polished porcelain tiling
  • Large space for living in
  • Uses a keyless entry system
  • Stores 103 gallons of fresh water at a time

Cons

  • Only has a 42-gallon black waste tank
  • Large size makes it harder to find good parking spots

Layout

The king-size bed and bedroom sit directly before the spacious bathroom found at the back of the RV. There’s a sofa with a hide a bed near the front and a closet with bunk beds for additional sleeping areas. These two extra options are near the secondary bathroom.

The main bathroom has two sinks, a toilet, and a shower compared to the secondary bathroom that’s only missing a sink. Along with the large floor space, there's a decently-sized closet that’ll hold enough clothes for two people.

Popular Features

The size of the Forest River Berkshire XLT 45A is one of it’s best features and makes it a popular choice for full-time living. There’s a sizable 103-gallon tank for storing fresh water, making it last longer before you need to refill. 

There’s plenty of TVs onboard that are ideal for any entertainment situation you may have. Additionally, there’s a Blu-ray player and an extended WiFi range receiver that works with the modem to ensure you can connect online. The tiled floors are heated, making them perfect for the winter season.

Pros

  • Sleeps up to eight people
  • Puts out up to 450 horsepower
  • Has a 100 W solar panel to charge itself with
  • Automatic leveling jacks with touchpad controls
  • 105-gallon tank for freshwater with a 50-gallon one for waste

Cons

  • Only one bathroom for its size
  • Slide-out design can feel unbalanced

Layout

Located directly at the back of the motorhome is the master bedroom section, complete with a king-size bed and a large wardrobe. There’s a TV section and dresser before you head out into the secondary bedroom or bathroom. These two pieces are divided by a wall running down the middle, requiring the need to pass through one before accessing the main bed.

Reaching the main living space there’s a small couch and dinette as well as a kitchen complete with a fridge. The couch and dinette are opposite a television area, providing plenty of space to walk between sections. This space also provides enough of a gap to cook without the risk of bumping into anything.

Popular Features

One of the best features that make the Fleetwood Discovery LXE 40G one of the best Class A motorhomes for a full-time living is its solar panel. The panel keeps everything charged as you put out up to 450 horsepower on the road. Once you’re ready to stop, you’ll be thankful for the automatic leveling jacks.

However, the engine isn’t the only popular feature as the Freedom Bridge chassis keeps your RV above ground regardless of the weight inside it. The chassis can hold up to 43,000 pounds.

Pros

  • Sleeps up to seven
  • 95-gallon fresh water tank
  • Hide-away overhead bunk
  • 100 W solar charging panel
  • Diesel engine makes it great for reducing your living costs

Cons

  • Small kitchen
  • Compact bathroom quickly becomes uncomfortable

Layout

The main bedroom is ideal, similar to the one you’d have in a normal small apartment with the bed right at the back of the RV. A small door faces the bed and opens up to a kitchen area with a closed-off bathroom directly next to it. Both the kitchen and the bathroom are small and make the floorplan seem a bit cramped.

The sofa which extends into a bed closes off most of the walkway from the door to the bathroom. However, the dinette is directly opposite the door, making eating and going outside a breeze. 

Popular Features

One of the best features of the Thor Motor Coach Palazzo 33.2 is the diesel engine that powers it. The engine makes any of the best Class A motorhomes for full-time living a lot friendlier on the environment and your pocket. The vehicle also drives well and can support up to 10,000 lbs of weight behind it.

Additionally, the nightstands have a USB charging area that makes maintaining your phones and tablets a quick task. This is aided by the 100 W solar panel charging system that keeps the vehicle’s batteries fully charged as long as there’s sunshine.

Pros

  • Handcrafted cabinets
  • High-quality craftsmanship
  • 10 kW Diesel generator onboard
  • Stores 100 gallons of fresh water and 55 gallons of waste
  • USB receptacles on the passenger side of the driver's area

Cons

  • Only sleeps five people
  • Bathroom directly next to the kitchen

Layout

The Tiffin Allegro Bus 45 OPP floor plans are a bit more complex than other models mentioned before. The main bedroom and bathroom are located at the back of the bus facing the side and extending outward. This includes a king-size bed, toilet, and shower all in the same room with a small wall separating the toiletry area from the bed.

Heading out of the main bedroom area, you run directly into the second toilet and the kitchen, with a fringe on the opposing side. After that are the dinette and two sofas that act as sleeping places for a few of the five total sleepers for which the RV is rated.

Popular Features

Many popular features make this model one of the best Class A motorhomes for full-time living. The RV feels extremely luxurious with its handcrafted and high-quality cabinets. There are USB receptacles by the driver's seat to ensure you’ll always have a charged phone.

Overall, there’s no denying the beauty of this motorhome. It has a decently sized kitchen that’s ideal for making any dinner you want. Also, the 10 kW generator will ensure you have enough electricity to power your onboard appliances. 

Honorable Mention:
Newmar Ventana 3407

Pros

  • Large pantry area
  • 8 kW diesel generator
  • Entry directly in front and unobtrusive
  • Diesel engine for better fuel economy
  • 105-gallon fresh water supply tank and 55-gallon waste tank

Cons

  • Only sleeps four
  • Only one bathroom

Layout

The layout for the Newmar Ventana 3407 can feel a little claustrophobic at first with the path to the bedroom from outside. As you enter, you climb up directly by the driving section and have to make your way between two different seating arrangements. This difficulty stands true especially if the hide-a-leaf table is not stowed away properly.

Once through here, you’ll have to pass the shower and toilet and the kitchen area which is opposite each other. Thereafter is a sizable bedroom section that provides plenty of space to walk around.

Popular Features

The best feature that makes this a great RV is the diesel engine as it’s cheaper to use and is considered more efficient. This continues with the 8 kW generator that keeps your appliances running during storms and dark days.

The amount of water and waste that can be carried is considerable. With a 105-gallon freshwater tank and a 55-gallon tank for storing waste products, you don’t have to refill or clear out the tanks often.

How to Live in an RV - What Is it Like Living in a Motorhome?

There are a few aspects to be aware of before deciding to move into a motorhome. These range from how much it’ll cost to stay at an RV camp to cleaning and more. However, many of the points mentioned are easily managed.

How Much Does it Cost to Live in an RV?

The largest cost of living in an RV is the price of purchasing it, which can range from $50,000 to $900,000. After this you need to pay for insurance and other necessary add-ons which can cost around $100 to $300. With monthly payments, groceries, and the additional add-ons it totals to anywhere between $2000 and $3500 on average based on the price of your motorhome and groceries purchased.

How Much Does it Cost to Live in an RV Park?

While staying at an RV park, you’re likely to get a better price the longer you stay for. On average you may spend $20 to possibly over $100 per night or $250 to more than $700 per week. The savings extend further when considering the monthly cost of $500 to over $2,000 and seasonal range of $300 to $1,800 plus per month.

However, the largest savings come from an annual stay that’s priced between $3,600 to $20,000 and up per annum.

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How Much Electricity Does an RV Use in One Month?

On average an RV uses about 20kWh per day with an estimated total of 608kWh per month. This depends on how many amenities you use and can easily climb if you constantly boil the kettle or watch television. The usage also rises during hot and cold seasons where you’ll need to activate heaters or fans and any aircon system.

Internet Connection

Having an internet connection in this modern era is essential. Many RV parks have a WiFi connection available that makes it easy to do your work and receive any emails. You can also sign-up for an unlimited plan with your cellular company of choice.

Cleaning

Cleaning an RV is a far easier task than that of cleaning a house. The kitchen is small, leaving a less significant area to scrub while you dust and vacuum the rest of the inside. However, it’s extremely easy to track dirt through the entire living space.

Bathroom Considerations

Most motorhomes have three separate tanks, one for fresh water, a black waste tank, and another for sink or shower water that’s drained out. You’ll need to manage these and empty them at the correct facilities at parks and other properties.

Comparison Overview

No two motorhome brands are equal, each one has its strengths and weaknesses. Here we look at brand comparisons and the difference between using a motorhome and a trailer for full-time living.

Motorhome vs Trailer for Full-Time Living

Any of the best Class A motorhomes for a full-time living is expensive when compared to a trailer of similar quality. This price difference is due to a trailer's lack of an engine, requiring you to own a car unlike with an RV. However, by having a car, you can easily travel to town for doctor appointments and other necessities.

Setting up a motorhome is far faster than any trailer, making it ideal if you intend to live in it while traveling across the country. There’s also the benefit of being able to discreetly set up camp in a non-campsite without standing out.

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Entegra vs Newmar

While the overall product of Newmar is a solid motorhome with good features, the brand often fails to deliver when it comes to their floor plans. Entegra may not offer the best layouts on the market, but they are roomier and more efficient than those of Newmar.

Additionally, the Newmar comfort drive system aids you as you travel through heavy headwinds. This sets Newmar above Entegra for floor space and ease of driving during difficult conditions.

Winnebago vs Tiffin

Tiffin holds a well-known reputation for creating high-quality and stunning models among the best Class A motorhomes. Winnebago is another well-known brand but produces more lower-end items. However, these items are not made in poor quality but are simply more affordable.

However, the Winnebago models often have a large fridge that can drain your battery quickly. This may be extremely inefficient as it leaves the rest of the part on less than optimal power. Overall, Tiff’s quality is amazing but the coach provided by Winnebago is of high quality for its price.

Newmar vs Tiffin

Tiffin still reigns supreme when delivering a quality motorhome and with the sheer quality of service they provide. Newmar offers a pretty good RV but lacks a few key details when it comes to the flooring. This difference makes Tiffin a better choice alone, aside from their long-lasting and more luxurious motorhomes.

However, it’s often regarded that Tiffin vehicles break down due to their complexity, whereas Newmar can build it the correct way on the first attempt. If you’re deciding between these two manufacturers, pick the option that better fits your budget and needs. Unfortunately, this also means extra utilities and a higher cost of living.

Thor vs Forest River

Forest River offers choices for any need you have, including permanent living. These models have a bit of higher quality control than those from Thor. This carries through during winter where the colder seasons can wear down the internals of the motorhome.

While both options will still last years with proper maintenance, it’s important to check both the brand's warranties on the vehicles. Thor has a better floor plan, making it feel more like a house when you’re inside your motorhome. However, both provide enough comfort and space to live in permanently.

Gas vs Diesel Motorhomes

The common debate of gas versus diesel carries into the motorhome industry as both types have their benefits and negatives. In the long run, you’ll spend more money on fuel with a gas RV, due to diesel’s better fuel economy. There’s also a slight preference for the comfort and design of diesel-run motorhomes.

However, when it comes to finding any of the best motorhomes for full-time living, making your budget work is a must. This requirement means that purchasing an RV that runs on gas is a better option than purchasing a diesel or fancier luxury coach.

Photo credit: koa.com

Conclusion 

It’s important to take the factors we’ve discussed into careful consideration before choosing to purchase a Class A RV with the intent to live in it. While there are many benefits to it, it offers a few challenges normally never seen by renters or owners of houses. 

Quick Recap - Best Class A Motorhomes for Living Full Time

Before you leave, here recap of are the best class A motorhomes for full-time living: 


  1. Forest River Berkshire XLT 45A
  2. Fleetwood Discovery LXE 40G
  3. Thor Motor Coach Palazzo 33.2

People Also Ask

You likely have many questions you want to ask before you consider purchasing one of the best Class A motorhomes for full-time living. Here are condensed explanations as to what a Class A RV is, whether you can live in one, and the legality behind it.

What is a Class A RV?

Class A motorhomes are well-built and durable models that come with many more features and a larger size than other classes. This size gives this type of RV a much more roomy interior and storage space, making it extremely comfortable to live in full-time.

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Is it Legal to Live in an RV With a Child?

While there isn’t any law that prevents you from living in a motorhome with a child, there’s a lot to consider. You’ll have to sort out how your child will get an education and how the doctor and hospital consultations will work. While it’s possible, these considerations make it a difficult proposition.

Can You Live Full-Time in a Motorhome?

Yes, you can live full-time in an RV and there are many benefits to doing so. However, there are also difficulties with the largest being the lack of space and a few utilities normally associated with a house. However, you can easily take to the road and travel the country while using one of the best Class A motorhomes for full-time living.

Can I Put a Motorhome on My Land?

It’s entirely legal to live in a motorhome on land that you own. However, there are a few conditions that you need to meet beforehand. Many large cities have rules that limit you to an RV that meets many of the same requirements as a house, and, in some cases,  inspectors are sent out to ensure you’re up to these standards.

My husband and I live a life on the road so we figured no better way to share our journey than through a blog! While traveling place to place as RV noobies, we quickly realized how often we were in need of RV accessories and supplies. This led us to launch RV Expertise and sharing our top picks.