Once upon a time, the great outdoors called – and you answered by buying an RV and turning the open road into your permanent address. But after years exploring all that nature has to offer, even the grandest of RVs can start to feel a little stale. Whether you have a Class A Gas RV or a Travel Trailer, 5th wheel or Truck Camper, you’re left with the RVer’s dilemma: do you renovate, or do you upgrade? RVT is covering the key considerations for both options so you can decide which might be best for you.

The Pros Of Renovating

Renovating is (Usually) Cheaper Than Buying New

It goes without saying, but RVs aren’t cheap. Even base models can cost a pretty penny. Tack on state-of-the-art amenities and new technology, and soon enough you might be looking at tens of thousand dollars (if not hundreds). And that’s before fueling up!

You Can Customize However You Want

Renovating your Used Class B motorhome or other RV gives you more control over the amenities you add in or replace.  This gets you exactly what you want while spending less on any creature comforts you don’t need or care about.

You Learn More About RV Repair

If you choose to do it yourself, renovating can be a great way to learn more about the inner workings of your RV and how all the systems function together. You never know when this knowledge will prove useful, but it may come in handy if you ever face unforeseen repairs while you’re on the road.

It Can Be a Family Bonding Activity

If you have kids, they can have ownership of the project by sharing creative ideas and helping them come to life. Renovating can teach children new skills, like taking proper measurements or using simple tools. And once the project is done, you can all take pride in the work accomplished and enjoy the memories for years to come. (Important Note: Be sure that any child participation in RV renovation work is limited to very simple and safe tasks, and always keep children under close supervision when they are in or around an RV under renovation.)

The Cons Of Renovating

The Renovation Could Cause Damage

While it can be a learning experience to renovate on your own, you don’t want to tackle anything too complex that could inadvertently cause damage to your Toy Hauler RV or other motorhome. For example, if your desired renovation requires electrical work and you’ve never worked with electrical systems before, you don’t want to risk faulty wiring that could lead to fire damage or electric shock (to you or the RV!).

It May Not Be Covered By Insurance

If you haven’t looked over your RV insurance coverage, that might help make – or break – the renovation decision for you. Your insurance plan may not cover renovations beyond replacing windshields or safety features. Double-check it to see what is and isn’t covered so you don’t renovate your way out of coverage.

It Could Interfere with Family Time

Didn’t we just say renovating could be a family bonding experience? YES! But maybe your kids are in school or your significant other’s work schedule doesn’t allow them to work with you. If this is the case, it might be better to purchase so you don’t miss out on key family time.

The Pros Of Buying New

Less Drain on Your Time (and Patience)

If you want to get back on the road quickly, then upgrading your RV might be the better alternative to the time and patience required to plan and execute an RV renovation. Your dealer can help you find a model that has the amenities you’re looking for, no tools required!

New Technology

Even the most avid nature lovers crave creature comforts. Buying a New Class C motorhome or other RV can offer built-in technology that already works seamlessly with the RV package, instead of after-market products that may not “play well” together.

Deferred Maintenance

When buying a brand new RV – aside from working out any initial bugs, of course – there is less of a chance you’ll need extensive maintenance or repairs for a while, especially if you’re keeping your new unit well-maintained with routine trips to your dealer’s service department. More time on the road means a happier you! 

You Have Access to More RV Parks

Did you know that some RV parks have a limit for the age of the vehicles they allow in? A common age cut-off is 10 years, so having a new RV means you don’t have to worry about those restrictions.

The Cons Of Buying New

There really aren’t many cons to buying a new RV. It’s pristine, has no wear and tear, and no one else has ever slept in your new bed! Still, the few cons can pack a serious punch. Just like most consumer goods, buying new usually means spending more money. You’ll likely pay for amenities or technology that are fun to use, but you might not need or care about. (And, of course, there’s also the depreciation factor once you drive it off the lot as well.)

But here’s a reminder: buying new doesn’t have to mean brand new. You can always purchase a great pre-owned RV to help you save a little money. Whether you’re interested in renovating or buying, be sure to check the listings at RVT.com to make the most informed decision that’s best for you and your family.

Important Disclaimer: RV renovation work involves risks to you and your property, including personal injury and property damage. RVT is not an expert in renovations and these “pros and cons” contain only general guidelines regarding RV renovation. You should always consult a professional expert if you have any questions or particular concerns about your renovation project. When in doubt, have renovations performed by a professional.

By Audrey Somero

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