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We are saddened to announce the passing of Gary Bunzer on April 17, 2020. We hope the RV Doctor website will continue to provide helpful information for you. Thank you for your interest and support for the RV Doctor - Debbie, Heather and Gretchen

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

RV Chalet: The Best of Two Worlds

Dawn breaks crisply as a new day awakens to the genteel warbling of a few playful morning birds. Two squirrels clamber after one another around the trunk of a nearby shade tree. You stir in the coziness of your bed as your nostrils begin to take in the aroma of freshly brewed coffee gurgling in your RV galley. Ah! The RV lifestyle! It just doesn't get any better than this.

A serene setting from your favorite RV campsite? Could be. Perhaps the remnants of a dream sequence during the night? Maybe. But in this case, once your eyes and remaining senses have fully recovered from their night of respite, you realize you are still at home! Home? And still in your RV? Are we referring to full-time RVing here? Maybe in a sense, but certainly not in the traditional view.

You have just experienced the typical response by those who are living the dream of having the best of two worlds each and every day, even when they are not traveling in their RV. They live in what's called the RV Chalet. A unique home that fully integrates your RV into a low cost, practical home base for those who love and cherish the RV lifestyle. And they do so, free from the unnecessary expense and overhead of maintaining a conventional home as well.

Full-time RVing is indeed a spectacular way of life. Extremely popular, but not fully attainable to the multitudes of us who still must work for a living and travel when we can. The RV Chalet is a means to accommodate RVing and still have a home base to return to when it's time to punch that time clock. Or for those who are retired or traveling full-time, when it's time to hole up for the winter. In truth, flexibility is the key word, for actually any scenario fits the RV Chalet. Sound appealing? Read on.

The RV Chalet is a singular design of living room, large full-size bath, walk-in closets and a surplus of additional storage facilities, (what's your biggest gripe about RVs?), all within the walls of a fully heated and air conditioned house. An inviting wrap-around sundeck graces two sides of the house. The RV, which is positioned inside the house, is used for sleeping and galley duties. With the inclusion of the full-size bathroom in the house, your RV lavatory becomes a private bath and the RV bedroom area, your master bedroom.

Think, for a moment, of the benefits. The possibilities are endless! No need for duplicate sets of dishes or other kitchenry items. Your bedding, towels and other soft goods are already in place for traveling. Need room for guests or relatives? (Not that relatives can't be guests!), but the simple addition of a sofa bed or hide-a-bed in the living area of the house will more than satisfy over-nighters. One owner we know even incorporated the ever-popular Murphy bed into a corner den of the RV Chalet to conciliate the need for multiple sleeping accommodations.

Whether you have a motorhome, travel trailer or fifth-wheel trailer, all types can utilize the significant features of the RV Chalet. This is not a simple carport for your RV, stuck to the side of the house, as are many copycat designs that have materialized over the years. Your RV is not exposed to the elements or the extremes of weather conditions. Winterizing for cold climates is a thing of the past. The RV Chalet was the first and the most integrating. Here's how it works.

Built into the RV section of the house are the typical hookups you'd expect at any full service campground site. Sewer, fresh water and either 30-amp or 50-amp electrical service is plumbed in through the concrete floor. Hot water is also furnished from a permanent, stand-alone 40-gallon water heater in the house. (A simple alteration inside your RV connects the hot water to the coach). There's no need to operate your RV water heater at all. Same thing concerning the RV heating and air conditioning system. Since the house itself has central heating and cooling, and the coach is totally inside the house, you simply open all the windows! In fact, there's no need to even use your on-board propane gas. A large DOT cylinder is retained in its own storage closet and the propane, like water, sewer and electricity is provided. A simple valve assembly is added to your coach's gas system to accommodate the new gas line. The range is the only propane appliance used in the RV when parked inside the house. The on-board propane containers can remain full and ready to go. Your refrigerator will be operating on 120-volts AC, just like in the campground.

Sewer and other vents are extended through the roof of the house in the exact location that coincides with the roof vents on the RV. Special venting is also considered for diesel or gasoline powered motorhomes. The center partition wall, which divides the RV side from the raised living room, has openings that align perfectly with the windows and entry door on the curbside of your RV. Likewise, the windows on the exterior wall of the RV section line up with the window locations on the roadside of your coach. Such simplicity adds to the flavor of actually being in a campground setting while sitting at your dinette having morning coffee and planning your next excursion. You'll have perfect viewing from inside the RV all the time! Additionally, the raised floor of the living area is built to the actual floor height of the RV for an effortless interchange when walking from coach to house.
When the building site permits, a pull through design featuring the unique invisible doors at each end can be constructed. The invisible door design adds an element of security while travelling too; no one knows for sure if your RV is in there or not. But when it is time to hit the road, you simply unhook as you would from the campground, disconnect the vents, open the large invisible doors, crank the motor or connect the tow vehicle and go!

A small village of RV Chalets was originally developed in a beautiful mountain setting in western North Carolina and many independent homes have been built all over North America. Building plans have been purchased by interested RVers all over the U.S., and in many foreign countries. The copyrighted plans are available today by sending a check or money order, (U.S. Funds only), to:

Bunzer Consulting
PO Box 19562
Seattle, WA 98109

One set of plans - $50.00
Four sets - $80.00 (four sets of the same plans)
Complete materials list - $10.00
Invisible door details - $10.00

Are you tired of maintaining a costly home that you frequent less and less now that you're on the road more and more? Or are you a young couple looking for an inexpensive way to get started with a home of your own? Or are you secure and simply having the time of your life enjoying the RV lifestyle, but still wish you had a place to roost on your property near that favorite mountain trout stream? Perhaps it is time to indeed begin enjoying the best of two worlds. You deserve the benefits of the RV Chalet simply because RVing is more than a hobby, it's a lifestyle!


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