How To Get The Best Deal On An RV [5 Crucial Tips]

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  • Post last modified:August 12, 2020

RVs can set you back hundreds, sorry, thousands of dollars, especially during the summer months. Luckily, there’s plenty of ways to leap right into the RV of your choice without breaking the bank. We’ve done a ton of research and put together some of the best ways you can use to secure an RV – whether new or used – at the most affordable prices, all in this post.

The following are six handy tips to get the best deal on an RV:

  • Find out the average price of your desired RV.
  • Don’t look vulnerable on your first visit.
  • Negotiate the best price on your desired RV.
  • Switch dealers. Don’t settle for one price from one dealer.
  • Focus on the used RVs more than the new ones.

We understand if you still have lots of questions on these points – it’s a lot to take in. It’s probably your first time buying an RV anyway. That’s why we’ve taken the liberty to elaborate on each one to make sure you get the best deal on your RV. We hope it helps!

A collage of salesperson negotiating to a buyer and a rv parked near the beachHow To Get The Best Deal On An RV [5 Crucial Tips]

How To Get The Best Deals On An RV

Find Out The Average Price Of Your Desired RV

It’s vital that you know the actual market price for the RV model you’d like to buy. Having the actual price in mind makes negotiations with your dealer a whole lot easier. The asking prices and MSRP (Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price) are figures that rarely tell the entire story.

Visit NADA to figure out the typical cost of a new rig. Get the figure and base your negotiation around it. If possible, try to get a deal that’s lower than the original price. No bank today can loan you the exact cost of a brand new RV – as high as it is! This fact alone should motivate you to talk your way into getting a more affordable price.

Don’t Look Vulnerable On The First Visit

Salespeople almost always prey on the impulses of unfamiliar faces. They understand that such people have no idea about MSRP or the general recreational vehicle sales system.

They typically seek to focus your attention on the vehicle that they think you’ll like and make you feel like you should go out of your way to get it. When shopping for an RV, you don’t need to make it too obvious that you’ve never done something of that nature before.

Make it somewhat clear to the dealer that you’re merely comparing prices, and that you can leave at any time when you don’t like what you hear. Read more about how to deal with RV dealers – no pun intended – in the next point.

Negotiate The Best Price On Your RV

It might come out as an obvious thing to do, but not most people know how to go about it. For one, it’s vital to know that most dealers can quickly raise their prices to more than 50 percent, depending on the season. They plan to negotiate a lower price, but they often get away with charging higher rates.

Don’t fall for the “low price” sticker that they often plaster across the windshield of the RV.

We, therefore, recommend that you take a risk when negotiating. At first, start at an extremely low price – up to half of the cost. Once they notice that you’re aware of what you’re talking about, you won’t believe the concessions your dealer may be willing to make.

Focus On Used RVs More Than The New Ones

Most consumers today believe that purchasing cars, homes, or anything new in general is the best way to save money for the long term. We often think that by buying new, we’ll experience fewer problems, and won’t have to perform maintenance regularly. That’s not always true.

Buying used RVs often offers you a ton of control over your budget. You have the option of choosing whether to customize the parts or improve some of the features. When you spend less upfront, you’ll have more than enough to put into your rig.

Use the extra cash to upgrade your new RV with some additional decorative features. Buying a new RV may deprive you of that kind of luxury.

Don’t Settle For One Price From One Dealer

If it’s your first time buying an RV, you may have a good dealer recommended to you by your friends or family. Don’t stick to that one dealer; they may not have the best deals that you’re looking for. What works out for your friends or relatives may not necessarily work out for you.

Shop around for as many deals as possible – both online and retail – before making a move. If possible, do a countrywide and online search. Google the model name or number of the trailer you want, and then find alternative dealers in various other parts of the country.

Can You Get A Good Deal At An RV Show?

You can get a fantastic offer on a used RV as compared to a new one. One of the best places to easily find used RVs is at an RV show. To put this into perspective, 25 percent off for a brand new RV isn’t that great of a deal. When you negotiate on a used RV, the possibility of getting 40 percent off MSRP for a fully-loaded 3-year old unit is genuine!

If you negotiate hard enough, though, there’s a huge chance you can get a much better offer. You have to be research-oriented too! Find out what you want and find out everything about it before negotiating for it.

How Do You Haggle With RV Dealers?

We’ve already established that the number one rule of getting the best deal on your RV is to negotiate. The question is, how do you haggle with the RV dealer? Begging/pleading for a discounted price is not an option. 

Here are three nuanced arguments you can use as your secret weapon, especially during RV shows:

  • “Lower the price, and I’ll buy two RVs”. In this case, you can find a friend or relative/friend who needs an RV, join forces and get the best deals on your purchases.
  • “I know a dealer who offers better financing”. You can make your case by pitting two dealers against each other to sell their RVs to you at affordable prices.
  • “Your warranty is shorter than the other dealer’s”. Base pricing shouldn’t always be your focal point when negotiating. Figure out the cost of every year under warranty and take up the argument from there.

Do RV Dealers Negotiate Price?

Most RV dealers aren’t too comfortable with negotiating their prices. They understand that it could go either way; they make something from their sale or nothing at all. That’s why they put plenty of incentives on the table to steer you from going lower than what they have to offer.

Nevertheless, they have to engage you in a meaningful negotiation to determine if you can reach a doable agreement. Some dealers may be more than willing to do what it takes to exchange ownership of the RV. At this point, you must use this opportunity to your advantage. 

How Much Can you Negotiate On A New RV?

You probably know this by now, but recreational vehicles can be quite expensive. Some RVs tend to be more expensive than others based on their features and capabilities. Read more about them on 7 Types of RVs You Simply Must Know and find out what makes each one special. 

With That Said, How Much Can RV Dealers Accept For Their RVs?

The answer depends on the state of the RV and who is selling it. If you’re buying a new travel trailer from an RV dealer, you negotiate 35 percent of the original price. If you’re negotiating on a used trailer from a private seller, there’s no telling how low he or she can go. 

We recommend that you identify more than one dealer from which you might buy. Negotiate with all of them until you land on the best deal.

Should I Buy A New Or Used RV?

Used RVs are way better than new ones. Probably the most obvious advantage of buying used is that they’re cost-effective. Also, you’ll be surprised at just how roomy a used RV can be. A used RV is a viable option, especially if you’re new to RVing, and you don’t want to spend insane amounts on an RV.

Buying a brand new RV will grant you only two benefits: the fresh-smelling interior and a valid warranty. Aside from those, there’s nothing better about new RVs that are worth paying top dollar for. 

What State Is The Cheapest To Buy An RV?

Depending on the state you live in, RVs can be super expensive. If you live in Montana though, you know just how cheap it is to buy an RV.

This state has a 0 percent general sales tax, 0 percent county sales tax, and a 0 percent city sales tax. Unlike most states that enforce strict tax collection laws, in Montana, outsiders can comfortably purchase and register an RV.

Besides Montana, other states worth considering purchasing an RV from include Nevada, Texas, Washington, Florida, Wyoming, and South Dakota.

RV parked near the beachWhat Is The Best Month To Buy An RV?

RV dealerships, salespeople, and private sellers consider fall and winter as the best months to sell their motorhomes. During spring and summer, sales can be excruciatingly low. Fall and winter are the best times to buy an RV since most dealers will want to make new sales (even if it means offering huge discounts).

The entire scenario changes once the warm weather starts creeping in. The same place you received a warm welcome in winter will make you wait in line for over an hour. That’s why you should take advantage of the peak sales months and get incredible deals while they still last! 

Do you still need more information on this? We got it all covered in the post ‘When Is The Best Time Of Year To Buy A Travel Trailer? We hope it helps!

Final Thoughts

It’s never easy getting the right deal for a recreational vehicle. However, with the few pointers provided above, we’re confident that you’ll talk your way into the right RV that compliments your requirements and lifestyle. All the best!

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