FOLLOW YOUR KNOWS
First in our new series by guest blogger, Elaine
It is that time of year again where the sun is out, weather is hot, and summer is around the corner. You have the itch to hit the road, but one thing is missing…You don’t have the RV you have been dreaming about!! You got the camping bug, went to RV shows, Googled campers and now it is time to do some serious thinking before you go to the dealership to take that next step to making your camper dreams come true.
Maybe you are new to the whole world of camping and have NO idea where to start. Maybe you have been camping for years but want to upgrade and just need to make a list of the important factors before making your decision.
There are so many things to think about before signing that paperwork and driving off with your new RV. This is a big investment so you want to make sure that you have thought about as many things as possible so you will be a very happy camper for many years to come. Do your research!!
Here is a list of 7 things to keep in mind when shopping for your RV, whether you are buying new or previously enjoyed. This list is made up of things after interviewing new and seasoned campers. Take your time and make the decision that is right for YOU!
- Know your budget!! It is very important to know how much you can comfortably afford to spend. There is no need to look at the RVs you can’t afford at this time. I mean, you can look at them and dream for the future if you want. But if your budget is $20,000…why look at s $250,000 motorhome??
2. Know your needs!! (Not necessarily your wants because you will find you don’t need all those things you thought you really needed.) How many people will be staying in your camper? Do you need a big bathroom/bedroom/kitchen? Will you be traveling with pets?
3. What is your vehicle’s tow capacity? You will need to know this so you can figure out what size RV you can tow. ALWAYS leave room in the equation for personal belongings. NEVER OVER WEIGH YOUR CAMPER/ VEHICLE. It can become a VERY dangerous situation.
4. Know the layout of the RV that suits your needs and if can be towed by your vehicle if you are getting a travel trailer. Make sure it has plenty of storage!! (Both interior and exterior) Do you want a bunkhouse/ no bunk? Do you want a walk around bed? Large floor plan? Toy hauler? Full size fridge? Slides? Large closet? AC/ furnace? Cabinet & counterspace? A lot of windows? Do your research! Know the things that are important to you to have in your RV. There are so many that offer the same layout so look around and find the one that fits your needs and suits your budget. (you can tour interiors of RVs at TVC on YouTube without every leaving home.)
5. How much time will you be spending in the RV? Are you a full-timer? Some-timer? Weekend warrior? This will help you determine some of the features you will want your RV to have. If you are a full time RVer, you will need to make sure your RV is well insulated and a four seasons camper.
6. Know who the manufacturer is that makes the model you like. Do they produce good quality RVS and get good reviews? Make sure that they have a good warranty. They also need to have good customer service, just in case something goes wrong with your RV down the road.
7. Know red flags to look for if you are purchasing a previously enjoyed RV! Are there holes where bugs and rodents can get in the RV thru the floor and/or walls? Do the tires look worn out? Rusted? Is it low mileage? Are there signs of leaks? Soft walls? Is there an odor inside like mold and mildew? Most issues can be fixed but you need to know what you are willing to put into it monetarily and time wise. Look for quality.
- Know the value of your trade.
- Know the bottom line walk out the door price for any new or used RV you purchase. Check for hidden charges or fees.
I hope this helps you on your journey to finding your RV. Know what you need. Do your research!! And when you purchase your RV, ENJOY IT EVERY CHANCE YOU GET!! And we will see you down the road!
Guest blogger and “Follow Your Knows” writer, Elaine, has been camping since she was 5 months old. She started camping in a 17’ Smokey travel trailer with her family who also owned a 28’ Golden Falcon travel trailer and a 40’ Bounder motorhome. Since getting married she has had a pop up, a StarCraft and now a Rockwood. Camping has always been a big part of her life and she loves to learn all she can. Camping is a must as often as possible with hopes of being a full timer in the next few years. Her husband is an RV technician. Elaine also enjoys songwriting, traveling, reading and journaling.