May I suggest that newcomers try it out first? We rented an Class C from Cruise America, although there are many large RV dealers out there who rent out various types of RVs.
If something breaks or quits during your rental week, good, it'll give you practice. Because the one thing that I can promise is that things will break or quit working. This will give you a chance to see how you react to issues. Some people can laugh it off, others can't handle the stress. There's no judgment here, but it will give you an opportunity to see you're willing to handle the stress.
When we had our brand new Class A Gas motorhome, at 3500 miles, yes 3500 miles, the engine blew up. The entire engine. And we were without our home for seven weeks. In the end, that motorhome travelled more than we did to get to a reputable garage. And we decided that we could no longer trust it, so we traded it for Louis, our used 2008 Monaco Dynasty. Knowing what didn't work for us on our first Class A meant that when we looked for a replacement, we knew what we wanted. And, we got exactly what we wanted in this coach. Sure, it needs some updating, but the floor plan is perfect for us and has everything we want.
Research is great. Research is necessary. Going to RV shows and dealers is a great way to learn what's out there. But nothing will beat actually living in an RV for a length of time and seeing if you actually like it. Can't stand being that close to your spouse 24/7? Then RVing is probably not for you. Can't let go of your stuff? Maybe this simplified lifestyle is not for you.
Be realistic. How are you going to spend your time? What will you do when you get mad at your spouse? How much traveling do you want to do? Who will make the decisions on where you go? Do you have enough emergency funds in case something happens? We're getting new tires for our rig this year. Imagine our sticker shock when we found out they cost twice as much as we'd budgeted for.
We started our fulltime lifestyle, thinking we would chase 70 degrees and travel 12 months a year. We quickly realized that this was not feasible or sensible for us. So, we now spend the six winter months in a warm climate, such as Florida and spend the other six months traveling. This year will be the northern midwest - Michigan and all the way across to South Dakota and spots in between. After six months on the go, we'll be ready for some quiet time to recover. Plus, sitting still for six months saves money on campgrounds and gas and allows us to splurge a little during the summer.
Take it out for a week and try living the lifestyle. After, make a note of what you liked and what you didn't like. Need more pantry space? Gotta have that walk around bed? One bathroom not gonna cut it? You can learn most of this stuff before sinking your savings into a unit you may end up not liking.
If you love camping at state and national parks, you probably don't want to get anything longer than 35' because that seems to be the cut off for most parks.
Like fancy resorts? Then know that many have the 10 year rule, meaning that if your rig is over ten years old, you will probably have to show pictures of your rig before they let you in.
Everyone's taste is different. What is a priority and deal breaker for me, may not be important to my neighbor. But you'll never know if you don't try it out.
Most RVs depreciate greatly as soon as you leave the lot. So, before you go upside down in an RV payment, please, please try it out and see what you like and what you don't like.
Please don't take this post as criticism. Think of it as a guide to getting started. We started with a 5th wheel. After five years, we realized that we would be happier with a Class A. After realizing that a gas model wasn't for us, we traded up to a diesel. These changes cost us a lot of money.
Hopefully this post will save someone a ton of money.