Is It Legal to Live in an RV With a Child Full-Time?

Families that live in an RV full-time may find the lifestyle more affordable. It’s a choice that can be particularly attractive for lots of parents when raising children, but is it legal to live in an RV with a child full-time?

No state regulation prohibits parents from living in an RV full-time with their child. If you plan for that lifestyle, you must consider a few factors, like your child’s education, health, safety, and environment.

Living in an RV full-time has many positive things besides some challenges. Before making any decisions, let’s find out what you can face when full-time RVing with your kids.

Is It Legal to Live in An RV With a Child Full-Time?

RV living saves you money, and you can travel to all the beautiful places whenever you want. Many families use this opportunity to raise their family in a non-traditional way while creating memories and spending time outdoors.

So, is it legal to live in an RV with a child full-time? As long as you’re the parent and have complete control of where you live, living with your child in a travel trailer or RV full-time isn’t illegal.

Even Child Protective Service agrees that this is a great way to live as long as the child’s safety and well-being are accounted for.

Things to Consider Before Living in An RV with Kids

Whether you want to live in your RV full-time or part-time with kids, there are a few things you’ll need to consider before making a move.

Safety: Is Your RV Safe?

Think about your child’s safety before moving in. Is the RV or camping environment free of electrical and other hazards?

Do you’ve smoke detectors and fire extinguishers in your unit? These are all serious concerns.

living in a camper with kids
The RV has to be free from all hazards. Photo: RV LIFE Pro

Living Space

Don’t forget about your living space. A pop-up camper isn’t the same as a full-size motorhome or RV. You’ll have much less room and privacy in an RV than in a house.


Some healthcare providers will classify an RV as a home, and others won’t. You may have difficulty receiving proper medical care without an official address.


Before living in a camper with kids, make sure public schools will accept them. You’ll have to homeschool or find a private school if they don’t. Remember that the tuition fees of private schools are pretty high.


Children need socialization for their mental and cognitive development. If possible, always choose an RV park where other parents live with their kids. It will teach your kids how to communicate with and participate in activities with others.


It’s hard to maintain personal space in a camper, and it’ll be even more limited if you travel with kids. Before deciding to live in an RV, ensure your family can handle the lack of privacy.

Think About Finances

Don’t forget about your financial situation. As you’re always on the go, it’s hard to find a remote job at the time. So, if you plan to live in an RV, ensure this lifestyle fits your financial plans.

Can You Use an RV as a Primary Residence?

An RV can be your primary residence, but it has to meet some requirements, which are:

  • Fulfilling the IRS policy for “home”
  • Having larger water tanks
  • Having designated areas in the trailer for cooking, sleeping, and bathroom
  • Using the RV only for residential purposes
  • Having a fire extinguisher in the camper
  • Having the driving license and registration documents of the vehicle

Advantages of Full-Time RVing with Kids

If you love to look at the bright side of things, consider these significant benefits of RV living with kids:


One of the great benefits of RV life is the freedom it offers. You can travel to any state, park in public parks, and camp where and how you want to. Of course, there are rules and guidelines to follow, but living in a traditional home never offers that freedom.

Family Memories

Another benefit of RVing is staying close to your family members. You get to experience everything together and create great memories.


Some people don’t realize how much adventure RVing can offer. Full-time camping allows you to travel across the country to places you’ve never been before.

Low Cost

Renting an RV is much cheaper than renting a hotel room or a house for the family when you are traveling. Also, camping frees up the financial burden of home mortgages and other expenses.

living in an rv with kids
RV living is less expensive than living in a home. Photo: Local Passport Family

Disadvantages of Full-Time RVing

While there are many benefits to full-time RVing, you must overcome some challenges. Some of these include:

Lack of Privacy

You’re in a tiny space with your family, and there is no real way to get away from each other. Now, think about living with kids in such a cramped space. Bye bye personal space and privacy!

No Permanent Address

A permanent address is essential for many reasons, such as passport verification, mailing address, etc. When you are always on the road, you may have to face some problems because of this.

Lack of Community

While full-time RVing, you’re on the road most of the time and won’t have a chance to get to know your neighbors. However, living in RV parks for a long time can be a different experience.

Dealing with Bad Weather

When you’re RVing full-time, you must deal with all weather conditions. In some areas of the country, winters are harsh and snowy, making RVing difficult.

FAQs about RVing with Children

Is it legal to live in an RV with a child in Florida?

Yes, living in an RV with a child in Florida is legal. The state has no law regulating a family living in a camper.

What states allow you to live in an RV on your property?

Most states allow you to live in an RV on your property. You can do this in, for example, South Dakota, Florida, Colorado, and California.


An RV might be an excellent choice for a family who wants to travel on a budget. They’re inexpensive and offer a comfortable living space that is easy to maintain and move.

Hope the answer is clear to you by now. If you enjoy traveling and are passionate about nature, an RV could be the perfect fit for your family.

Scott Wilson
Scott Wilson
Scott Wilson is a seasoned RV traveler and professional mountain biker with a great sense of humor. After earning a Master's degree in Automotive Engineering from Columbia University, Scott spent years working as an RV technician at Camping World and Outdoorsy. Today, he enjoys exploring the US in his fifth wheel and truck with his wife. With over 15 years of RV living and road tripping experience, Scott now shares his knowledge and expertise as a travel blogger, helping others make the most of their RV adventures.

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