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Plenty of people are jumping on the RV bandwagon. You might be feeling tempted to the same. And why not? Traveling the country and vacationing in an RV does sound like a pretty good time. (Especially these days.) But when it comes to actually buying one, should you buy a new or used RV? Well, as it turns out, there are plenty of reasons to avoid buying a used RV.

Used RV traveling to Yellowstone
View of a used RV from behind | Nano Calvo/VWPics/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

A low price should be a red flag

Finding a low priced used RV can feel pretty satisfying. Who doesn’t want to get a great deal on their next big purchase? The problem is that if a used RV is accompanied by too low of a price, that could be a bad sign. A bargain bin type of price could signify major problems ahead, and no one wants to buy an RV that needs a total overhaul from the get go.

Axle Addict also recommends taking into consideration just how much RVs depreciate over time. While paying $39,000 for a used RV that cost $300,000 once upon a time might sound like a good deal, you should ask yourself why the price is so much less. Sure, it’s used and should be cheaper than buying a new model, but that low of a price, again, could be a sign of worse things to come.

Those vintage looks aren’t everything

For many, it’s those Insta-worthy vintage looks that pushes them into buying a used RV. But can you blame them? There’s just something about a perfectly polished Airstream that’s hard to ignore. Looks alone shouldn’t be the only reason that you buy a used RV, however.

Axle Addict reports that while many older models are able to maintain their handsome good looks, some could very well be eroding from the inside out. With that in mind, Axle Addict recommends checking out a used RVs wiring before purchasing it. Old brittle wiring could result in an RV’s appliances no longer working, and according to Axle Addict, finding and repairing old wiring can be a complicated, time-consuming, and expensive process.

A lot could go wrong with a used RV

At some point, something is going to go wrong with your RV. That’s just a given. Anyone who owns one will tell you that there are plenty of things that can go wrong too, whether you buy a new or used model. The problem, however, is that far more can go wrong with a used RV, rather than a newer one. Fixing a used RV can get pretty expensive too.

Not to mention, if you buy a used model and something does go wrong, it may not be covered by a warranty. According to Drivin’ & Vibin’, when an RV is new, its warranty will cover most issues. However, when you buy a used RV you will have to pay out of pocket for any repairs, assuming the warranty has expired. You could buy an extended warranty, but even then, Drivin’ & Vibin’ reports that probably means buying one that’s less than 10 years old.

But if you do buy a used RV, you should keep these tips in mind

But what if you have your set on a used RV? What then? Buying a pre-owned model can be a great way to make the most of your purchase… if that is, you know what you’re looking for.

That’s why AARP recommends doing your homework and having an understanding of what type of RV it is that you’re interested in. Once you have an understanding of what you’re looking for, AARP suggests shopping around for the best deal. And once you’ve found the used RV that all of your dreams are made of? Be sure to ask plenty of questions and to get a copy of the RV’s vehicle history report. You should probably have a trusted mechanic give it a thorough once-over just for good measure too.


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