If you're like most people looking for their first RV, you probably have visions of fun family trips dancing in your head. An RV can open up a world of adventure on the open road! Before you buy, however, make sure you know what to look for and what to walk away from.
Consider Your Needs
As this can be one of the largest purchases you'll ever make, it's important to know what you're looking for before you go. Research what's on the market in connection with your needs and the long term costs of ownership.
Once you've bought your recreation vehicle, your long term investment begins. Consider the costs you will have for oil and fuel, maintenance, and insurance. These costs will vary with the size and abilities of the RV you choose.
Other features to consider will be determined by your plans for traveling. Do you intend to go camping in rough terrains, or simply travel the country and see the sites? Will you want Wi-Fi on the go? Internet connectivity is now available in many RV models. Also decide if you intend to cook your meals on trips or just eat out—this will determine your need for kitchen space and appliances.
It is also a great idea to go on a short trip with a friend who owns an RV, to see what your likes and dislikes are. Ask what features they have enjoyed most and which ones haven't made a difference to them. This will give you the opportunity to see for yourself what a trip is like and what's important to you.
If you choose to buy a used RV, there are a couple more things you should consider. Mileage can be a good indicator of quality. Obviously you don't want to buy an RV with too many miles, but if it has fewer than 10,000 miles on it, this could be a sign that the RV is prone to problems or is difficult to drive. Ask the owner why they are selling with so few miles on the RV.
Also, make sure to test in person for the RV's road stability and any water damage. On a test drive, you can see how stable doors and windows are, as well as problems like low tread on the tires.
Consider taking it through a car-wash to test for any leaks in the ceiling or windows, and check to make sure no wallpaper is bubbling or peeling. These issues can be problems the seller won't share with you but you'll have to pay for later.
To get started on your search, check out a company like Orangewood RV Center.