The full-time RV lifestyle has been calling you for some time. The desire to escape the confines of a brick-and-mortar home, to declutter and downsize, and experience the freedom that RV life can afford has grown so strong that you’re now in the midst of planning your transition. Alongside decisions about rigs, routes and reefers lies the decision about where to domicile your RV.
Domicile and Residency Are Different
Different from residency (where you live for the time being), domicile is where you officially register your permanent address. A permanent address is a requirement for many fundamental aspects of full-time RV living including:
- Driver and Vehicle License Registration
- Vehicle Insurance
- Tax Filings
Different Domiciles for Different RV Lifestyles
For RVers focusing on traveling far and wide on a tight budget, the choice of state in which to domicile your RV tends to be heavily influenced by where taxes are lowest, making no-income-tax states Florida, Nevada, Texas, and South Dakota the most popular. Regardless of which state you choose, you will have to “visit home” at least once a year for an annual vehicle inspection.
However, heading on an epic cross-country trip, clocking up tens of thousands of miles, and constantly planning where you’ll be spending the night is not every RVers idea of a great time.
There’s often plenty to explore locally or within the borders of just one state. For example, Riverbound’s home state, Arizona, isn’t just home to one of the most magnificent sights on Planet Earth – the Grand Canyon – but to a treasure trove of breathtaking rivers, mountains, lakes, deserts, and bustling cities. Riverbound’s own home city, Lake Havasu City, is the crystallization of that.
And nor is full-time RV living about always being on the road; it’s about having the freedom to choose. It’s about spending 3 weeks exploring the Chihuahuan Desert and then 2 months at an RV park like Riverbound, becoming part of a community, building friendships, and simply “being,” before the travel bug bites again.
Domiciling your RV in Arizona
For RVers thinking about basing themselves and domiciling their RV in Arizona, here we share some practical information. It’s not an official guide or office advice, but a helpful nudge on where to start your research.
Arizona State Tax
In Arizona, the state tax rate includes both income and state sales tax. Income tax brackets range from 2.59% to 4.5%, while sales tax which starts at 5.6% then varies depending on address. Lake Havasu City Sales Tax is currently 7.6%
Official Site: Arizona Department of Revenue
Arizona Drivers License and License Plates
The cost of obtaining an Arizona Drivers License depends on age and starts at $25 for 16-39 year-olds dropping to $10 for those 50 and over.
Title transfer fees are $4 and title must be transferred or as soon as you become a resident, or within 15 days if purchasing a new vehicle.
Annual vehicle tag fees vary depending on the type of vehicle, its original price, and for how long it has already been registered in Arizona. In 2021, the Arizona Department of Transport released an infographic showing the breakdown.
Permanent registration for RVs with a gross vehicle weight (GVW) of 10,000 lbs or less is a one-time $125 registration fee.
Official Site: Arizona Department of Transport
Your domicile state determines your insurance requirements. If your RV has a motor and is drivable, Arizona law requires you to carry minimum liability insurance. Minimum levels of financial responsibility are:
- $25,000 bodily injury liability for one person and $50,000 for two or more persons,
- $15,000 property damage liability
Even if you’re on the road, you still have the right to vote. RVers with their domicile in Arizona can submit a voter registration at the same time as applying for a driver license.
Registration must be received by the county recorder at least 29 days before the election to make you eligible to vote.
Official Site: Service Arizona
Homeschooling in Arizona is a viable option for RVers with young children. While education is obligatory for all children aged 6-16, parents can delay beginning homeschooling until their child turns 8. Parents wishing to homeschool will need to file an affidavit of intent with the county school superintendent stating that the child is being provided with instruction in a homeschool.
Official Site: Arizona Governor Office of Education
Additional Resource: Arizona Families for Home Education
Domiciling at Riverbound
Riverbound welcomes both part-time and full-time community members. Full-time members can register their permanent address and receive post at 3493 E. Heights Blvd. RV Site #47 Lake Havasu City, AZ 86404. Full-time members also have the option to sub-lease their RV Park building and lot, making it an exciting investment opportunity that can earn you an income while you explore. For more information, contact us on (928) 770-5585.