When it comes to buying pre-owned motor homes, first time RV buyers generally prefer to go through reputed dealers for a fair price and quick deal. However, as an informed buyer, you should enter into a deal with your eyes wide open and take note of the factors that influence the price mechanism. Here are five things to keep in mind when you are opting for a pre-owned vehicle:
Motor homes start losing value as soon as they are out of the showroom and hit the road. The most luxurious, top class motor homes can depreciate anywhere between 2000-4000 dollars per month for the first few years of their lives on the road. The RV still continues to depreciate after that, but at a slower rate. As a result of this depreciation pattern, less than five-year-old used motor homes with average wear and tear can be available at half the price of the manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP). Therefore, when negotiating a price with the dealer, keep the age of the vehicle in mind and accordingly calculate depreciation.
Before finalizing the deal, ask your dealer to provide you with the pending loan information of the RV you are planning to purchase. If a vehicle has been purchased on loan, the car title will contain all the information relating to the loan amount, the lender’s name and the location of the bank. Request the dealer to share with you the photocopy of the RV title. Find out if there is lien on the RV. If so insist on the removal of the lien. The owner can obtain a lien release from the lending bank by paying off the outstanding loan amounts. In case the owner is planning to pay off the loan with the amount he receives from the purchase, it is the responsibility of the dealer to go to the bank to conclude the necessary transactions.
As far as used motor homes are concerned, odometer reading can provide only a partial view about its condition. With proper maintenance and storage, high-end RVs can serve its owners for 20 years or more. In fact, it makes sense in buying a well-maintained RV with a higher mileage than the one that shows low reading on the odometer, but is poorly maintained. This is because motor homes are prone to developing technical snags when they sit idle. Frequently-used motor homes, on the other hand, are generally healthier than their rarely travelled siblings. Try to get an RV that has run 5K to 10K miles per year.
Batteries may get drained out and eventually damaged if they are not charged in a timely manner. There are reasons to be concerned when you come to examine a used RV at the dealer’s lot and find that it is completely drained of charge. This indicates batteries have not been charged regularly while it has been sitting at the dealer’s lot. Bring this to dealer’s attention, while negotiating for price, and if new batteries have to be put, ensure the issue is addressed at the earliest.
RV Electrical System:
The health of the electrical system must be one of the key deciding factors in your RV buying process. In addition to circuit breakers and fuse boxes, the RV electrical system should come complete with heavy duty electrical cords and surge protectors that save the system from electrical fluctuations. If you find that the electrical system calls for a gross revamp, ask the dealer to make necessary price adjustments.
Knowing what to look for and what questions to ask the dealers while buying used motor homes can be extremely handy when you are seeking out for a good investment and RV experience. The above checklist will enable motor home buyers to look for the right things and thereby make the right purchase.