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When Buying that First RV: 5 Costly Mistakes to Avoid

  • Costly mistake #1: Choosing the wrong type of RV. Ask yourself these questions:

    • Do you love the rugged outdoor life or prefer the comfortable tourist pace? Have this discussion first.
    • Do not delay the discussion with yourself and/or your partner about driving fears. Make sure you drive every RV you tour to see if it fits your skills.
    • Travel preferences affect the type and brand of RV purchase. Is it your desire to travel frequently? OR…Do you prefer to take it slow and stay longer at each destination?
    • Don’t allow emotion to dictate a spur-of-the-moment purchase rather than a practical choice that works best for the long term.

    Costly mistake #2: Purchasing an RV layout that does not work for you due to a lack of options in your local area. There are ways to purchase long-distance and have the RV shipped to you or pick it up yourself. Visit RV Lifestyle Experts for details.

    Costly mistake #3: Deciding to go with a loan instead of a cash purchase without spending time to analyze the choices available (for example, buying a used RV instead of new).

    Costly mistake #4: Allowing a dealer to talk you into a 20-year mortgage rather than providing your own loan arrangement (FYI: dealers make huge profits providing high-interest loans).

    Costly mistake #5: Rushing into a deal without an independent RV pre-purchase inspection.

    • Although skipping an RV inspection prior to signing on the dotted line appears to be a money-saver, it is not.
    • The big savings start here when you negotiate with the dealer or owner to fix the problems found by the inspector (or perhaps reduce the purchase price if you have the skills to do the fixing).
    • Huge savings when you choose not to purchase an RV with major maintenance issues.
    • See the National Recreational Vehicle Inspectors Association (NRVIA.org) for help finding an inspector.

    Here is a less costly mistake: You start remodeling the interior of the recently purchased used RV before spending 3 months traveling in it. If you are new to the lifestyle, wait until you get settled in before making remodel decisions. You may find the previous owner with more travel experience had good reasons for the layout.

    • Renovations do not result in a higher resale value when you decide the layout just does not work.
    • AND finding quality remodel workmanship on the road takes time and patience and creates stress, just the opposite of your dream.

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