Buying A Travel Trailer For Full-Time RV Living In The Desert

In 2021, Kara and I sought to purchase our very first travel trailer which was to be used as our full-time home.

We began our search with a time limit of about 2 weeks. This is because we only had 60 days total before we had to depart on our full-time mostly off-grid life. So, traveling from state to state in order to pick up a travel trailer was of great concern. Therefore, we decided to limit searches to our city of Las Vegas.

Although we started with great optimism, after a few days of calling RV dealerships and private RV owners, our prospects were not looking good because COVID was spiking RV sales nationwide.

Therefore, we were starting to think that the travel trailer that fit our checklist, location, time frame, and budget was already in someone’s hands.

Then… one day… while checking out the inventory on this dealership’s website, we thought to call them up to see if they had anything that wasn’t on their website.

And lo and behold… they said; “Why yes sir, a tiny shiny travel trailer came in just this morning. Would you like to come on down and see it… before it’s gone?”

So, since the dealership was only a few miles away, we scheduled a time to see it that very day. Unfortunately, this travel trailer was on the short side… 22 feet. But, it checked all the boxes.

Speaking of our dealership experience… it was interesting to say the least.

First of all, we were assigned a young, newly hired salesman who was working on his very first sale with first time RV buyers.

So, he was trying out some ole “fear of loss” tactics and we could tell he was really eager to pop his cherry. Kara and I simply saw that as an opportunity to get a better price.

More on that at the end.

Our first impression of the toy hauler travel trailer was… wow, it’s shiny!

Not like an Airstream but more like an actual mirror. The sidewalls were mirrors.

At first, I was disappointed and then as we progressed with the walk-thru it kinda grew on me.

Kara immediately thought it was unique and that we talked about how travel trailers all seem to look like they were built by the same manufacturer.

Anyways…

Here’s what the 26 foot 2014 Toy Hauler Axxess by Livin’ Lite features:

Mostly-Off-Grid-RV-Life-toy-hauler

Construction Materials:

  • “All Aluminum” (aluminum over an aluminum frame)
  • Azdel Onboard® Composite Panel finish with wallpaper
  • Styrofoam wall insulation
  • Countertops in vinyl laminate with styrofoam core
  • Cabinets in all aluminum

Travel Trailer Dimensions:

  • Length with Tongue / Hitch 26 ft
  • Length of living area 22 ft
  • Length of living area 22 ft & Ramp deck 7 ft = 29 ft
  • Width 8.5 ft plus rolled-up awning
  • Height with AC 10.4 ft / Interior height 7.25 ft

Weight Measurements:

  • Dry weight 4,200 lbs
  • GVWR 8,000 lbs
  • Tongue / Hitch weight (10-15% percent of trailer weight)
  • Payload capacity 3,800 lbs

Holding Tanks:

  • Fresh water tank 43 gal
  • Gray water tank 28 gal
  • Black water tank 28 gal

Propane Tanks:

  • Propane tank 5 gal x 2 = 34 lbs empty and 74 lbs full

Electricity:

  • Battery Power Converter
  • Prewiring for Air Conditioning / Heater / TV Antenna

Air Conditioning:

  • Low Profile Automatic Air Conditioner by Dometic 13,500 BTUs

Heaters:

  • Automatic heater 16,000 BTUs
  • Water heater tank 6 gal / propane

Wheels:

  • Aluminum wheels
  • Number of axles 2
  • 15 Inch tires
  • Spare tire mounted under rear
  • Electric drum rear brakes
Mostly-Off-Grid-RV-Life-toy-hauler

Awning:

  • 16.6 ft Manual retractable

Doors:

  • Side door with screen door
  • Ramp door that doubles as a deck patio with pull down screen
Mostly-Off-Grid-RV-Life-toy-hauler-kitchen

Kitchen / Living Area:

  • Table with bench seats
  • Stove with 2 oven burners
  • Convection microwave
  • Refrigerator: Mid-size electric / propane by Dometic (RM 3762 Double Door 7 Cubic Foot RV Fridge)
  • Vinyl sofa
  • Electric queen bed lift by Happijac
Mostly-Off-Grid-RV-Life-toy-hauler-bed
Mostly-Off-Grid-RV-Life-toy-hauler-bathroom

Bathroom:

  • Clothes closet
  • Sink with cabinet storage
  • Door with key lock
  • Plastic toilet and shower with seat

Tongue:

  • Heavy duty hitch and sway bars by Husky (tool missing)
  • Tongue mounted battery
  • Manual tongue jack

Leveling Jacks:

  • Front and rear manual

Misc:

  • Digital TV antenna
  • Deluxe satellite stereo system with built-in exterior and interior speakers

Although Kara and I were unhappy with short length of the toy hauler, I remember us saying things like… “smaller travel trailers are easier to maneuver on roads, parking lots, campsites, etc.” and… “the rear ramp turns into a deck which adds on 7 more feet of length totaling 29 feet of living space.”

This 2014 Axxess by Livin’ Lite was listed at $26,995 and discounted to $19,985.

Kara and I negotiated a cash price of $18,000 and we purchased it on the spot.

Thanks to the sales manager wanting to give his new salesman his very first sale. Woohoo!”

Kara and I hope this information is helpful for someone who is also thinking of acquiring a travel trailer.

Good luck!


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