RV storage facilities are a great option to keep your camper safe and secure when not in use.
Renting a storage unit, however, can be very pricey.
If your RV storage budget is next to nothing, then you may have to get creative to find a storage spot for your RV.
Let’s look at 9 of the best options to store your RV for free (one of which will make you money)!
Let’s start with the most obvious – storing your RV in your home garage.
You may have room in a two or three-car garage to store a small RV, camper, or trailer. This is the ideal choice for most Class B and some Class C motorhomes, which range from 17 to 35 feet in length.
This is a great way to protect your recreational vehicle from theft, vandalism, and weather damage at no monthly cost.
The downsides? Your garage may not be big enough, especially if you have a fifth wheel or Class-A motorhome. And if it is big enough, but it’s taken up by your personal vehicles, you’ll have to park one of those cars in the driveway.
If your garage isn’t ideal, you may want to consider your driveway.
This free option removes the size restriction of storing an RV in the garage, as most driveways are long enough to hold a recreational vehicle. Having 24-hour access to your vehicle right at your own house is a plus.
With that said, you will need to check with your Homeowner’s Association to see if you can legally store your RV in your driveway long-term.
Other downsides include potential weather damage as it’s not protected from the elements (an RV cover will help) and the increased possibility of theft and vandalism.
Tip: Mold can be an issue when storing your RV outdoors. Check out our guide on how to prevent mold in your RV during storage for some important tips.
If you have enough space, storing a camper, RV, or trailer in your backyard can be an excellent option. It’s out of sight from passerby’s, free, and extremely convenient.
But, like the aforementioned storage solutions, it has similar downsides.
You’ll first need to check with your homeowner’s association to ensure it’s within the rules (if applicable). And again, the vehicle will be susceptible to weather damage (even in hot climates), theft, and vandalism.
You could potentially build a shelter in your backyard to protect your RV, but you’ll need to check with local regulations to see if that’s possible. And, of course, that would add significant costs.
In the Street
Less likely of an option, but still an option for some is to park and store your RV in the street in front of your house.
While this may be a free option, you lose out on convenience as you’ll likely have to move your RV regularly to keep in line with local regulations.
And, of course, the vehicle will be susceptible to weather damage, theft, and vandalism. Plus, there’s a higher risk of somebody accidentally running into your vehicle while it’s in the street.
I would only use this option as a last resort until you can find a better option. It most likely breaks local regulations and HOA rules. And you won’t be making any friends with your neighbors either.
A Friends Property
If you don’t have room or the means to store your RV on your property, try asking a friend if they can store your RV for you.
Friends with large lots, outdoor barns, or large vacant storage sheds will be your best bet.
And if you throw in a little something extra for them, they might be more inclined to say yes. It doesn’t have to be money either. You can offer a service like helping to mow occasionally, watching their dog while away, etc.
Church Parking Lot
Many churches have huge parking lots, which aren’t used a large portion of the week. If you’re in good with your church, and they have the extra space, you may be able to store your RV in their lot during the winter months.
Again, you may have to entice them by offering to do handy work around the church, fold-up chairs after service, etc.
The downside is your RV will be exposed to the elements all winter long and the threat of theft and vandalism. So, you may want to invest in an RV cover to offer at least some protection from these threats.
Related: Are RV Covers Good or Bad?
RV dealerships typically have huge lots. And they are basically already storing RVs on their lot, waiting to be sold.
With that said, they most likely won’t allow you to store your RV there unless you have prior business dealings or you know somebody who works there.
If you’re in the market for a new RV, you could ask for free RV storage during the winter months as part of the sale. The worst they can say is no, but they may be willing to do just about anything to get that sale.
A local RV park is another potential option for storing your RV for free during the winter months. Many campgrounds close down during this time of year, so your RV won’t be taking up any precious space otherwise used by paying campers.
Governmental ran campgrounds may be a bit harder of a sell than privately-owned campgrounds.
While some campgrounds may allow you to park your RV on their property overwinter, for most, you may need to sweeten the deal with an offer to help upkeep the campgrounds, etc., to get free storage.
Rent It Out
Last but not least, an interesting option to offload your RV and make some money in the process is to rent it out.
Rental companies like RVshare, for example, will connect you with people interested in short-term RV rentals. You make money while not having to worry about storing your vehicle – it’s a win-win!
How Much Does It Cost to Store a RV?
If you’ve decided that free RV storage is not the best option for you, then how much can you expect to spend on storing your vehicle?
On average, RV self-storage costs between $50 and $200 per month, with the overall expense depending on various factors. See How Much Does It Cost to Store an RV? for a closer look at these factors and more.
Where Can I Park My RV for Free Overnight?
If you just need to park for free overnight, you have many more options, including:
- Truck Stops like Flying J
- Walmart Parking Lots
- Cracker Barrel
- Camping World
- Bass Pro Shops
- National Parks
- BLM Land
- RV Boondocking spots
Tip: Call ahead to the spot where you plan to spend the night to make sure they offer free overnight parking. Each individual spot/business will have its own rules.