Navigating the Nomadic Life: Domicile Address for Full-time RVers
What does it mean to refer to a “domicile address”? Well, in this sense “domicile” means a county that a person treats as their permanent home, or lives in and has a substantial connection with. Basically, it’s a place to call home (kind of). When you are living full-time in an RV and you don’t have a “home” you need an address in order to do a lot of things like register your vehicles or get a driver's license.
Some people simply use a relative’s address as a means to stay in the state that they left. And that is an option, but there are other (and maybe better) options out there. In fact, if you’re not from Texas, South Dakota or Florida, it might be worth it to domicile in one of these states. The main reason for this is that these states have no state income tax. So, if you work full-time on the road or are thinking of starting a business from the road, these states offer addresses through a few different companies so you can take advantage of the income tax laws.
Here is a list of a few of the companies that offer this service:
- Livingston, TX
- Sumter County, FL
- Pennington County, SD
- Texas Home Base
- Wichita Falls, TX
- Good Sam
These are just a few examples and there are more out there, but as full-time RVers we hear about the three I’ve included the most.
How to start:
- Research the companies to find more about them and which will fit your travel style (you must go there at least once)
- Once you know which one, you can go to their websites to get the process started
- These companies have a range of options from just having the address to a full mail scan program that includes forwarding to wherever you might be.
- To get your vehicle’s registration and driver's licenses, you must be present in that county to do so.
After all that, you will be a part of that state and will reap the benefits that it comes with!
Of course, to engage with these companies, there will be fees associated with the service. They range depending on which option you choose when it comes to how you receive your mail and how it is sent out.
Personally, we use Texas Home Base. We pay $200/year for their digital mailbox service. This is a service that when the mail comes in, they scan it, upload it and send me an email saying that all of our mail has been uploaded. From there, we can pull it up on their website and we can choose to either hold it, shred it or forward it. You do pay for your own postage so be aware of that also.
Most mail these days is electronic, so there really is not much mail coming through that we care about. Mostly, we found that there were many benefits in simply becoming Texas residents, not least because of the convenience of the area in relation to where we are from in Oklahoma.
So there you have it, fellow wanderers! The concept of a "domicile address" might sound a bit formal for those of us who've chosen a life on the open road, but it's the key to unlocking a world of possibilities. Whether you're weaving through the Texas plains, soaking up the Florida sun or embracing the charm of South Dakota, finding your RVing home base can be as exciting as discovering a hidden gem on your journey.
Remember, choosing the right domicile address isn't just about where you receive your mail; it's about tapping into a state's unique advantages and making the most of your nomadic lifestyle. So, whether you're scanning your mail with a click, forwarding memories from the road, or simply finding a state that feels like home, may your road be smooth, your address be true and your adventures be endless.