So you’ve finally caved and decided to try and live in a recreational vehicle full time. So unless you’ve inherited one for some reason, chances are you’ve probably come across the age old dilemma of buying an RV in brand-new or used condition. Deciding to buy a new or used recreational trailer comes with a lot of questions and uncertainties.
To help you out, consider these pros and cons to buying a new or used RV:
New RVs are fresh from the factory
There’s just something about buying a brand new RV; everything looks nice, it’s got that fresh car smell, and the lack of dents and scratches adds to the allure of a factory-fresh vehicle. A new RV also comes with a warranty, and the manufacturer can help keep your recreational vehicle in tip-top shape for the first couple of years.
New RVs are greener
RV manufacturers are always adjusting to the consumer demands; in a more environmentally conscious public, this has never been truer. In fact, most newer models are more environmentally friendly, employing things like fuel-efficient engines and ergonomic designs. Some models are even compatible with solar technology; all you need to do is install solar panels on your motorhome.
New RVs depreciate quickly
Brand new RVs can cost a lot; even a modest looking trailer can cost up to tens of thousands of dollars, while more luxurious models might make you feel like you’re paying for a mortgage. On top of that, RVs also depreciate quickly. The minute you drive it off the lot, you’re already losing 10%-20% from the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP). By the sixth year, you could end up with a vehicle that’s depreciated by half of its original price.
Used RVs cost less
Those new to the RV life might want to consider buying a used model. Recreational vehicles generally depreciate at a higher rate than other motorized vehicles. Buying a used RV enables those new to the lifestyle to get a feel for life on the road without creating a huge dent in their bank accounts.
Used RVs are more operable
Buying the right used motorhome might even be better in some cases. This is especially the case when buying from seasoned RVers. These pros may have already identified some problem areas and outfitted it with better RV parts to provide a smoother ride and overall experience.
Some RVs also come with more customized, homey touches that make your life on the road feel a bit more comfortable.
Used RVs might be too old
The downside to buying a used RV is its age. Depending on when the vehicle was manufactured and how long or how it’s been used, there could be a lot of wear and tear that might cost you more in the long run.
Some RV parks even have campground restrictions for RVs that are of a certain age. It’s best to have an RV buying checklist when looking around to help you find a motorhome that’s not too shabby.
Making the choice
No matter what RV you decide to buy, it’s best to do a lot of research. Ask to do a thorough inspection, and don’t hesitate to ask the dealer or the owner questions that will help you make a better choice.
Also consider how you’ll be using the vehicle, as this is the most important thing to keep in mind when choosing an RV.