Negotiating on an RV

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KandT
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Negotiating on an RV

Post by KandT »

We have all our debt paid off and want to have some fun.

I am trying real hard to limit my losses (yes I know this ridiculous from a financial perspective). Anyone know the best way to negotiate on a used RV? We should be coming into the time that dealers should want to dump them before winter.

I am at a loss when they have them marked up $40K over NADA. It seems ridiculous to go in and ask for $40K off. :(

Thanks all
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by Sandtrap »

Used RV. Private seller?
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986racer
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by 986racer »

+1 on buying used. My understanding is that these depreciate heavily and quickly.
retire2022
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by retire2022 »

Scammers on Craigslist list watch out, also heating systems, plumbing system could be damaged from freezing temperatures if not properly winterized.

Lots of risks.
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willthrill81
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by willthrill81 »

986racer wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 9:54 pm +1 on buying used. My understanding is that these depreciate heavily and quickly.
There's a good reason that they tend to depreciate quickly: they often fall apart just that fast. Most RVs are very poorly made. Roof leaks are usually one of the first headaches.

OP, I'd strongly urge you to have the RV you're considering buying thoroughly checked out by an experienced RV repair shop before purchase.
“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.” J.R.R. Tolkien,The Lord of the Rings
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KandT
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by KandT »

Sandtrap wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 9:17 pm Used RV. Private seller?
j
This one is at a dealer.
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KandT
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by KandT »

willthrill81 wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:20 pm
986racer wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 9:54 pm +1 on buying used. My understanding is that these depreciate heavily and quickly.
There's a good reason that they tend to depreciate quickly: they often fall apart just that fast. Most RVs are very poorly made. Roof leaks are usually one of the first headaches.

OP, I'd strongly urge you to have the RV you're considering buying thoroughly checked out by an experienced RV repair shop before purchase.
I have had two before and yes they aren't built well but driving a house down the road doesn't help the integrity.

I know the pitfalls. I am looking at how to negotiate and what traps to look for. I feel more comfortable in the car world but have no idea if they will just laugh at me for offering NADA low retail for what they have marked at $119,000 RV. I want to offer $80K.
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KandT
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by KandT »

retire2022 wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:17 pm Scammers on Craigslist list watch out, also heating systems, plumbing system could be damaged from freezing temperatures if not properly winterized.

Lots of risks.
I try to avoid craigslist on all matters - especially an RV
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willthrill81
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by willthrill81 »

KandT wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:29 pm
willthrill81 wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:20 pm
986racer wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 9:54 pm +1 on buying used. My understanding is that these depreciate heavily and quickly.
There's a good reason that they tend to depreciate quickly: they often fall apart just that fast. Most RVs are very poorly made. Roof leaks are usually one of the first headaches.

OP, I'd strongly urge you to have the RV you're considering buying thoroughly checked out by an experienced RV repair shop before purchase.
I have had two before and yes they aren't built well but driving a house down the road doesn't help the integrity.

I know the pitfalls. I am looking at how to negotiate and what traps to look for. I feel more comfortable in the car world but have no idea if they will just laugh at me for offering NADA low retail for what they have marked at $119,000 RV. I want to offer $80K.
I see no reason to approach it differently than a vehicle purchase. Your $80k offer is very likely to be rejected with no counter, but if you're alright with that possibility, go for it. If you seriously want the RV, I think that you need to offer more like $100k. They don't have as much wiggle room, in terms of percentage, with used rigs as new ones.
“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.” J.R.R. Tolkien,The Lord of the Rings
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snackdog
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by snackdog »

Used is the way to go. Lots of these are bought, barely or never used, then sold in near new condition for health reasons. Forget the dealers. Go to RVtrader.com.
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KandT
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by KandT »

snackdog wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:53 pm Used is the way to go. Lots of these are bought, barely or never used, then sold in near new condition for health reasons. Forget the dealers. Go to RVtrader.com.
I think that is what I will end up doing but summer isn't the time to buy! People have them listed well above average retail. I think I can buy below low retail if I find the right RV.

The trouble though is sooo many people are upside down on them that they cant afford to sell them!! :oops:
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MP123
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by MP123 »

KandT wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:29 pm
I know the pitfalls. I am looking at how to negotiate and what traps to look for. I feel more comfortable in the car world but have no idea if they will just laugh at me for offering NADA low retail for what they have marked at $119,000 RV. I want to offer $80K.
I doubt the dealer would go for that.

But I bet you could buy a barely used year old one from a private party for that kind of discount.

Good luck either way.
ronno2018
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by ronno2018 »

Damn, now you have me wanting one -- https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/2019-W ... 5008072931 :sharebeer
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jabberwockOG
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by jabberwockOG »

Buying any type of vehicle at a fair price always requires lots of effort and patience. Easy and quick when it comes to purchasing a vehicle of any kind is always extremely expensive - no exceptions to this rule - it is a high cost to convenience and sellers know it and their profits depend on it.

Take the time to do the research and go look at lots of used RVs being sold by dealers and private parties. You have to learn what various specific RVs are selling (asking and selling price) in various markets across the country. Check out RV forums for prices being paid for specific models, and also for forum members selling their rigs on the forum.

When you do find a great RV feel free to make low-ball offer. No need to feel weird it is a business transaction pure and simple. But be prepared to be initially rejected and tortured with typical used car sales mind games and 3rd rate sales tricks. 99.9% of everything the salesperson says is a lie. It is par for the course. Always walk away from any offer refusal immediately and wait them out. Give them your phone number and tell them if they want to sell it at your price to give you a call, but that in the meantime you will keep looking, and move on and do keep looking.

At some point you will hit the right RV, right timing, and the right seller that wants to move the RV at your price or very close to what you are willing to pay. But it will only happen after you initially walk away from their deal. You can always assume you paid way too much if you take their first counter, and don't let them stew a week or two with your low ball offer.

This will not be a quick or easy process, but you can save huge amounts of money by being a smart and patient buyer.
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WoodSpinner
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by WoodSpinner »

I have heard good things about the RV Pricing and Values FB group.

Definitely want a detailed inspection and a good estimate on pricing. A quality used rig would certainly be attractive.

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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by livesoft »

If I was doing this (and I am not), I would find similar RVs that have sold for much much less and even tell the dealer about the others. It would be up to the dealer to sell me the vehicle and not up to me to buy the vehicle. If they don't want to work for my business, then that should be immediately apparent and I would go elsewhere.

In my driving throughout Texas I see thousands of RVs on dealer lots both new and used. I don't even know how these people can stay in business at all. There are more RVs for sale than there are families in Texas.
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by SevenBridgesRoad »

ronno2018 wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:59 pm Damn, now you have me wanting one -- https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/2019-W ... 5008072931 :sharebeer
I look at that list of features and see a giant list of complexity and things that will break and be expensive to repair. And probably fail while on the road in some remote area.
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KandT
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by KandT »

SevenBridgesRoad wrote: Sat Jul 13, 2019 9:20 am
ronno2018 wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:59 pm Damn, now you have me wanting one -- https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/2019-W ... 5008072931 :sharebeer
I look at that list of features and see a giant list of complexity and things that will break and be expensive to repair. And probably fail while on the road in some remote area.
Sure Seven Bridges the cheapest and easiest thing to do is watch Netflix. If you want o experience life you have to take a risk. I have owned two and you are right - They break and they never break when you aren't using it right? Kinda by definition they are going to break when you are using it which means you need it. So if on the road problem solving is your thing, this is not for you.

Nonetheless, I was looking for ideas on how to limit my losses and negotiate the best I can. Yes I know I will lose money and things will break. This forum can be exhausting with negativity anytime someone wants to do anything more than work and save money in an index fund. I already did the hard part. I am to the living part - your situation may be different.
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by 2commaBH »

KandT wrote: Sat Jul 13, 2019 9:28 am
SevenBridgesRoad wrote: Sat Jul 13, 2019 9:20 am
ronno2018 wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:59 pm Damn, now you have me wanting one -- https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/2019-W ... 5008072931 :sharebeer
I look at that list of features and see a giant list of complexity and things that will break and be expensive to repair. And probably fail while on the road in some remote area.
Sure Seven Bridges the cheapest and easiest thing to do is watch Netflix. If you want o experience life you have to take a risk. I have owned two and you are right - They break and they never break when you aren't using it right? Kinda by definition they are going to break when you are using it which means you need it. So if on the road problem solving is your thing, this is not for you.

Nonetheless, I was looking for ideas on how to limit my losses and negotiate the best I can. Yes I know I will lose money and things will break. This forum can be exhausting with negativity anytime someone wants to do anything more than work and save money in an index fund. I already did the hard part. I am to the living part - your situation may be different.
Dumb question - would renting be an option for you? Or is the cost too prohibitive for the time you want to be on the road?
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by capjak »

You will need to find similar RVs to the one you want to negotiate and establish the market price for the RV, without a plan B RV it will be difficult to negotiate.

If I can find a cheaper one that I may not like as much for some reason I will use that as the negotiating tool, being up front and saying I found this one for XX can you beat that price?

Good Luck!
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by abuss368 »

Rick Ferri spent a year or so driving across our great nation. He documented his travels online I believe. He may be able to provide some guidence.
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by TxAg »

Buy used. Steer clear of the dealerships.
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by Shallowpockets »

If you spent $200 night on a hotel room in the same areas you would take an RV you could have 500 nights of hotels before you hit $100,000. For $200 you could get the best hotel rooms. Most likely free breakfast also.
No RV equals no gas costs, parking problems, dump your toilet, upkeep, maintainence, and camping costs maybe up to $50 night anyway.
So. How many nights you really going to use that RV?
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by tibbitts »

ronno2018 wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:59 pm Damn, now you have me wanting one -- https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/2019-W ... 5008072931 :sharebeer
That listing is too honest: 15.9mpg? I would have said 16 - sounds much better.
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by sergeant »

I would make low ball offers. One will get accepted. People want to get rid of them and will take the cash. Don't be afraid of upsetting someone, the savings is worth it. Enjoy your RV.
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tibbitts
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by tibbitts »

Shallowpockets wrote: Sat Jul 13, 2019 12:33 pm If you spent $200 night on a hotel room in the same areas you would take an RV you could have 500 nights of hotels before you hit $100,000. For $200 you could get the best hotel rooms. Most likely free breakfast also.
No RV equals no gas costs, parking problems, dump your toilet, upkeep, maintainence, and camping costs maybe up to $50 night anyway.
So. How many nights you really going to use that RV?
You are missing the point that there are generally not motel rooms - especially the "best" motel rooms - available where you might want to park the RV. It's a lifestyle choice - you can't compare it to motel travel based on cost.
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by tibbitts »

SevenBridgesRoad wrote: Sat Jul 13, 2019 9:20 am
ronno2018 wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:59 pm Damn, now you have me wanting one -- https://www.rvtrader.com/listing/2019-W ... 5008072931 :sharebeer
I look at that list of features and see a giant list of complexity and things that will break and be expensive to repair. And probably fail while on the road in some remote area.
Although my most recent RV experience was in the 2000s, I will say that reliability was surprisingly good. It's somewhat like with cars: if you compare the number of features on a car from the 60s to a car today, you'll conclude that you won't make it out of your driveway without something breaking on your 2019. And yet somehow 2019s are more reliable and durable than the older cars were when they were new.

However, structural integrity for most types of RV is definitely less than cars or light trucks, so the water intrusion and resulting damage can definitely be an issue.
Last edited by tibbitts on Sat Jul 13, 2019 1:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
mountain-lion
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by mountain-lion »

Shallowpockets wrote: Sat Jul 13, 2019 12:33 pm If you spent $200 night on a hotel room in the same areas you would take an RV you could have 500 nights of hotels before you hit $100,000. For $200 you could get the best hotel rooms. Most likely free breakfast also.
No RV equals no gas costs, parking problems, dump your toilet, upkeep, maintainence, and camping costs maybe up to $50 night anyway.
So. How many nights you really going to use that RV?
And none one of those hotel nights will include the great views, conversations fellow RV travellers and so on.

The RV life is a real thing with an entire culture and friends to go along with it. Hotels only solve the lodging portion of the equation.

It isn't for everyone--in fact, it isn't for me--but the two experiences are different, and that difference is worth paying for for some people.
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by curmudgeon »

I've noticed that some dealers seem to put up "sucker prices" on nice RVs. Then they can throw in a big discount and make the buyer feel like they were getting a good deal. I might start by sending an email to the dealer contact asking what their "realistic price would be for this specific RV", indicating that you are aware of competitive/guidebook prices. If they want to stick to that high starting point, move on and don't waste your time with them.
Tracker968
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by Tracker968 »

It sounds like you don't want to buy used. If you really want to get the lowest possible price from a dealer you have to be prepared to play the game, the long game. Plan on making at least 8 visits to the dealer between now and October. Bring the wife along a couple of times. Write down on a piece of paper your plan, and review it with your wife. It will be something like this:

Visit 1 - meet dealer and salesman, tell him how excited you are to get a new RV. Give him your contact info. Don't discuss price.
Whenever he calls or emails you, wait as long as possible to return his call or email. Wait until you think he is at the limit of forgetting who you are. If he offers s discount that expires on a certain time or date, wait until after that point to get back to him. Always be nice and friendly. Don't be frustrated. Just act kind of scatterbrained.
Visit 2 - go and hang out for an hour. Shoot the breeze about where you plan to take the RV. Tell him you are a definite buyer and need a low price. Never, ever give him the price you are willing to pay. He will use that as your floor price and work you up from there. Never give him a price. If he asks you a hundred times- DONT GIVE HIM YOUR PRICE.
Visit 3 - take wife out kids or grandkids. Hang out, check out every feature, option etc.
Visit 4 - tell him you are ready to buy. Meet his manager or owner. Tell them you are ready to buy and just need their best price. Don't give then your price.
Visit 5- tell him about done other RV dealer in another state that you heard about and might decide to take a road trip to check out. Do you research to make sure you know the real name and location and that they actually have the model you want.
Visit 6- tell him you haven't made the road trip yet but are still planning on it.
Visit 7- bring wife. Remind salesman how serious you are. Would like to use the RV this year but might have to wait until next spring if the price can't be reduced. Never give him your price - remember!
Visit 8 - season should be winding down by now. Ask him to update his offer and you will let him know if it meets your budget. If it does, you are prepared to drive off in the RV.

As you can see it will take a lot of time and commitment. You have to be the guy who waited them out the longest. Not just kind of long, the longest!
If you don't want to play the long game then just go and pay their price and enjoy the new RV!
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KandT
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by KandT »

Thanks all - I do want to buy used. Happy to buy used from a dealer or an individual.
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Toons
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by Toons »

They need to make a profit
Make a "Reasonable"Offer"
After they have delivered their numbers to you,
After.
The last one I purchased I was polite but
I let the salesman know he was allowed one trip to the sales managers office,no more,
Otherwise I would politely get up shake his hand and leave.
The deal was done in one trip.
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KandT
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by KandT »

Shallowpockets wrote: Sat Jul 13, 2019 12:33 pm If you spent $200 night on a hotel room in the same areas you would take an RV you could have 500 nights of hotels before you hit $100,000. For $200 you could get the best hotel rooms. Most likely free breakfast also.
No RV equals no gas costs, parking problems, dump your toilet, upkeep, maintainence, and camping costs maybe up to $50 night anyway.
So. How many nights you really going to use that RV?
I admitted in my original post that this wasn't a financial decision. I am confused as to why people continue to point out that it is a poor financial decision. I know that. It is the most basic math possible.

This is a family decision. Maybe you name your hotel room with your kids and enjoy packing and have a plethora of stories about your hotel rooms but I find them to be sterile environments. I also don't find they love it when you start a campfire in the hall way.

Maybe you were driving your hotel room in Wyoming and got a flat and by luck ended up meeting the local townsfolk at the city park. I did and it was really neat.

Ever been flying and just decided to stop into and tour Notre Dame University? We did.

I just dont feel like being a boglehead is about every decision being the best possible financial decision especially after you are worth a couple million dollars.

Now all I wanted to know is if anyone had any ideas about the best way to negotiate on a used RV. That is all.
wilked
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by wilked »

KandT wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:29 pm
willthrill81 wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:20 pm
986racer wrote: Fri Jul 12, 2019 9:54 pm +1 on buying used. My understanding is that these depreciate heavily and quickly.
There's a good reason that they tend to depreciate quickly: they often fall apart just that fast. Most RVs are very poorly made. Roof leaks are usually one of the first headaches.

OP, I'd strongly urge you to have the RV you're considering buying thoroughly checked out by an experienced RV repair shop before purchase.
I have had two before and yes they aren't built well but driving a house down the road doesn't help the integrity.

I know the pitfalls. I am looking at how to negotiate and what traps to look for. I feel more comfortable in the car world but have no idea if they will just laugh at me for offering NADA low retail for what they have marked at $119,000 RV. I want to offer $80K.
How did you buy the two before? Why wouldn’t you do the same thing you did then?
Point
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by Point »

Time of year is the best lever you have to purchase. If you can buy in January it’s best, as long as you have a solid dealer and a warranty for the systems. It’s hard to test A/C in January. We purchased a year ago January, negotiating over internet and drove two days to pick it up. Great price, new, and 2 year warranty. We have used the warranty and it’s worked out quite well.
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by Shallowpockets »

Well it seems to me to be in part a financial decision that is why you want to lowball down at 80k for a 110k RV. Otherwise you would just pay it and go out and set it up make your campfire and chat with the other RVers.
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KandT
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by KandT »

Point wrote: Sat Jul 13, 2019 4:52 pm Time of year is the best lever you have to purchase. If you can buy in January it’s best, as long as you have a solid dealer and a warranty for the systems. It’s hard to test A/C in January. We purchased a year ago January, negotiating over internet and drove two days to pick it up. Great price, new, and 2 year warranty. We have used the warranty and it’s worked out quite well.
Thank you - We dont have any trips planned so it isn't an issue to wait.
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KandT
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Re: Negotiating on an RV

Post by KandT »

Shallowpockets wrote: Sat Jul 13, 2019 5:01 pm Well it seems to me to be in part a financial decision that is why you want to lowball down at 80k for a 110k RV. Otherwise you would just pay it and go out and set it up make your campfire and chat with the other RVers.
Thank you - You make a good point and I will reconsider my purchase based on your input.
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