Buying & Selling An RV – Is Now A Bad Time?

Do you know that old saying, “sell high and buy low”? Well, that applies when it comes to buying and selling RVs right now. Many people have asked us if now is a bad time to buy an RV. And the short answer is “yes.” But that also means now is the PERFECT time to sell an RV.

The RV Market Is Booming!

The RV Market is crazy right now! If you want to purchase a new RV right now you might have a hard time finding what you are looking for and if you want to purchase a used one, be ready to pay TOP dollar. Supply is at an all-time low and demand is at an all-time high. 

So what happened and why all the craziness? 

Well in one word, what happened was COVID. 

When Covid hit over a year ago all international travel and some domestic travel shut down. People flocked to the idea of RV travel as a way to still get away from it all and have a fun vacation. It also was an interesting time because people realized they could work remotely. This meant the concept of being a digital nomad became a reality in short order for many people.

RV Travel is Awesome!

Let’s face it, traveling by RV is the MOST ideal way to travel in our opinion! You can have your own bathroom, bedroom, your own fridge with food you like, and more. It’s really like having a second home (or maybe it’s your primary home) that you can take with you wherever you go! 

In 2020 many people realized these benefits and went out and purchased an RV. (Or rent an RV and boy, finding an RV to rent during 2020 was no easy task)!

Most people figured that all of these newer RV owners who purchased in 2020 would turn around and sell their RV after all of the lockdown and travel restrictions were lifted.  

But that didn’t happen. People who were first-time RV’ers found out THEY LOVED RV LIFE and had no intentions of selling. And they don’t plan on going back to the “old ways” of traveling either. Plus, we’re betting this group started telling all of their friends how much they loved the RV Travel Lifestyle and maybe started bringing their friends along.

**You’ll have to let us know in the comments, is this maybe how or why you got started with RVing?

Supply & Demand

And there you have it, supply can’t keep up with demand. 

Of course, RV manufacturers are still producing thousands of new RVs every year. However we’re hearing from many sources, RV manufacturers (like many other manufacturers) are having supply chain issues. Things like lumber, wheels, electronics, and other items needed for assembly are getting more costly and harder to obtain.

Now – this part is JUST our personal opinion. But this would personally make us concerned about potential quality issues with new RVs being built at the current time.

****You’ll have to let us know in the comments – you’re thoughts on if now is not a great time to buy a new RV. 

Buying an RV – Used

So, how about buying used instead?

That’s a great question that brings about some good discussion points. Let’s start the discussion with something we realized while shopping for RV insurance.

We were not adequately covered for replacement value on our RV!  What we paid for our RV when we bought it (and this was in 2018) and what we would pay for the same unit now (same made, model approx. mileage, etc.) is vastly different. This means that instead of going down in value, our USED RV went up in value due to market demand. And that is NUTS! 

So, if you want to buy used, be prepared to pay more now than you would have paid a few years ago. Which is the OPPOSITE of how it normally works. Typically things with a motor and wheels will go down in value over time.

The Best Deal Buying RV’s Used

Now, here is a tip. If you are in the market for a used RV, this is the situation you want to look for to get the best deal. 

Find a couple (or individual) that is a little more “mature” (meaning they have more gray hair than you do) that is selling because they cannot travel any longer. 

This is how we came to purchase both the RVs we’ve owned over the past 4 years. Usually, someone who is a little more advanced in age than we are takes really good care of their things. So, you can get a very well-taken-care of rig this way. Plus, if the person needing to sell is selling due to health reasons, they are a motivated seller looking for a quick sale. Any time you are a buyer, you want to buy from a motivated seller. It’s just the best way to get a great deal. 

***Let us know in the comments if you bought a used one – how did you find your RV? Was it from a dealer, or an online marketplace, or how did you find it? 

Selling an RV

Now, Let’s shift gears a little bit and talk about why now is the BEST TIME ever to sell an RV! 

Maybe you have an RV that you are not using enough for the storage and upkeep costs to really make financial sense. RIGHT NOW is the best time to be able to get MORE for your RV than you might ever be able to get for it by selling it. 

We’ve talked to several storage facility owners who have shared that they have dozens of RV’s in their storage lots that NEVER leave and have been sitting there for several years. If this is you (or maybe someone you know – share this post with them) NOW could be the time to sell.

If you want some tips on how to sell your RV for top dollar, check out this video we did with some pointers on how to market your RV for sale. 

Sell High & Buy Low

Our personal suggestion is unless you can find a great deal or bargain, this is probably not the best time to buy an RV. It will be interesting to see if there are more used RVs that come on the market with the summer camping season winding down. And if that happens, you will see more supply to meet the demand. This “traditionally” drives down prices – but who knows? 

I think one thing we can all say is that it has been a crazy 18 months. But one thing that we do know is for certain. People LOVE the RV Lifestyle and once they get a taste of it, they’re hooked! 

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What are your thoughts and experiences – we always love hearing from you, the RV community.

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