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New Post 5/20/2011 1:45 PM
  ontheroadagain365
40 posts




Hidden Costs of used RV 
Just a few notes on some of the hidden costs of buying a used RV. In my case, a Class A. I got a screaming deal on my '99 Southwind. Bought in October 2007 for $30,000 (Private party sale) NADA listed it at around $38,000.

Since then I have done the following:

1. New Converter ($165)
2. Upgraded TVs ($475)
3. New Inverter ($275)
4. Dash A/C repair ($1,100)
5. New Sat dome ($699)
6. Repair "check engine" fault ($125)
7. New house batteries ($170)
8. New chassis battery ($65)
9. Replaced broken basement door latches 6 x $10 ($60)
10 Replaced cracked coolant overflow tank ($65)

Did most myself. If I had to have a tech do it all for me, I figure another $3,000-$3,500 in shop/labor costs.

Total = $3,199

Now these are all things (except the TVs) that were either dead, or on the way out when I bought the coach. No general maintenance items. I will also have to have a front stabilizer jack re-sealed, soon, but that will be covered by the ESP. ($100 deductible)


All in all, I feel that I still came out ahead, due to the great deal I got on the rig. It's taken 3 1/2 years to finally get everything where it works right, but now I have a coach where everything works as designed.

This was the first RV I ever bought, so I really didn't know what I needed to check, even though I did a lot of research before I started looking. I guess the only way to really know what to look for is to own one and go through the trial and error process.

I decided to put this up, just as a caution to any new RVers looking to buy their first used Class A. The price you may pay will usually not be the price you pay.

 
New Post 5/20/2011 1:46 PM
  padmej
124 posts




Re: Hidden Costs of used RV 
ust to put things in to perspective, I would not necessarily say that $30,000 is a "SCREAMING" deal on an eight year old RV with so many issues. I would also say that on a private party sale on a vehicle that NADA for $38,000.00 $30,000.00 is to be expected as a negotiated price in this (or even three years ago) market.

As for labor on the work you did. You need to calculate your labor to be AT LEAST 3 times the cost of parts and materials so had you taken the rig in to have $3200.00 worth of parts replaced it would be more reasonable to expect the total bill to be more along the lines of $9000.00

The thing is though, you now know all there is to know about all those systems and you know the work was done properly and will last. You also have the exact rig that you wanted.

ALSO... have you checked the age of the tires. If they are the OEM tires you need to replace them as well.
 
New Post 5/20/2011 1:51 PM
  Damien
45 posts




Re: Hidden Costs of used RV 
Looks like some optional upgrades and normal maintenance to me.
 
New Post 5/20/2011 1:52 PM
  Damien
45 posts




Re: Hidden Costs of used RV 
Except for the air conditioner most of the repairs are pretty normal. I have done everything there on my truck/trailer except the satellite. I think one of the "hidden" expenses short of a tranny or engine failing is having to buy new tires or a brake job soon after buying a used rig. I think $500 per year average for tires, brakes, batteries, minor repairs and replacing stuff like Tv's, radios, etc. isnt too high. Buying new obviously gives the buyer 4-5 years of not spending much on maintenance.
 
New Post 9/2/2011 3:50 PM
  lizrfoust
142 posts




Re: Hidden Costs of used RV 
Yikes! With those many hidden fees plus any future repairs and upgrades, it sounds that it's more practical to buy a brand new one.
 
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