Whether you’re gunning for the “RV lifestyle” or simply looking for a vehicle you can take with you on American holidays, you deserve a quality and reasonably priced RV. Over the years, RV designs have improved, so you’ve got quality covered. But how about the price?
We all know that RVs are not cheap mainly because of features and size. Pop-up campers alone can already be more than $10,000. Class A RVs are the most expensive, with some priced at $300,000. That’s why it makes sense to get a used RV for at least 30% its regular price.
Just to make sure, though, you continue to enjoy good quality value from used RVs, know their real worth with these tips:
Check out reliable online resources. These refer to NADA Guides, Kelley Blue Book, and, to a certain extent, Edmunds, which is one of the biggest and trusted car dealer sites. In less than 10 minutes, you can already compare dozens of used RVs, which are normally sold to dealers.
Know the VIN. Cars can change appearance so easily, but the VIN (vehicle identification number) stays. An honest seller should be able to provide it to you. Otherwise, you can find it near the driver’s side, either on the windshield near the dashboard or on the door post. VINs are important since they can give a more thorough background of the RV’s history including repairs, maintenance, accidents, previous owners, etc. Depending on the results, you can now negotiate the price.
Perform an inspection. Never buy a used RV without conducting an inspection, or else, you’re taking such a huge risk. This is especially true if you’re bidding at an auction. Vehicles are sold in as-is basis, so if you end up with a lemon because you didn’t conduct an inspection, auctioneers can’t help you, and you cannot return the vehicle.
What to look for in an RV depends on the type. You can use this checklist to begin. If you don’t have enough inspection experience, don’t do it yourself. Bring a professional technician with you whether you’re buying it at an auction or a dealer.
Ask the dealer. Another quick way to know the worth of a used RV is to directly ask the dealer. Give your closest store a call and inquire about the prices. Many of them already have a website, so you can just browse, or they’ll fax them to you.
Note, though, that several car dealers can be cunning and aggressive. They can offer you really low prices but compel you to spend more with insurance, add-ons, and other fees. Be assertive and learn to say no when you know it’s not the right time to buy an RV yet.
In the end, price is just one of the many things to consider when buying a used RV. In fact, quality trumps cost at any time. Buying a more expensive used RV is a good investment when family and friends are safe, comfortable, and satisfied when riding it.