Whether you’re an avid RVer or a first-time buyer, you’ll likely interact with an RV salesperson at some point. When you do, keep in mind that every transaction is the crossroads of two different goals: the buyer, who wants to save money; and the seller, who wants to make money. However, both goals can be achieved with thoughtful planning, thorough research, and an understanding of the RV purchase process. RVT has five tips for working with your RV salesperson for the best deal.
1.. Know What You Want (and Why)
Before stepping foot into the dealership, know what your absolute must-have features are, and what you can be flexible on. At minimum, you should be able to clearly communicate the following:
- Bottom line total budget (what you’re willing to pay if you were to write a check for everything today)
- Towing capacity (if applicable)
- How many people (and pets!) you need room for
- How and where you’ll be using your RV, and how often
- Your must-have amenities
If you’ll be working remotely while exploring the great outdoors, maybe you’d be interested in things like solar panels. If you want to travel with friends and family, an outdoor entertainment system could be perfect. Whatever your plans are, let your dealer know so they can recommend an RV that best fits the RV lifestyle you’ve been dreaming about.
3. Come Prepared With Research
Browse through RVT.com listings to get a feel for what models are selling at what prices, and in what condition. Look at multiple dealers, too; chances are high that if you’re able to tell your salesperson that the dealer down the street is selling the same RV for much less (and it’s not a bluff), they’ll be willing to match or beat that deal.
Research will also help you know what potential add-ons you can ask for if the dealer wants to beat that deal down the street. Sometimes they’re willing to throw in extras to push the deal over the edge, so don’t be afraid to ask!
4. Know Your Budget and Stick to It
The entire transaction hinges on what you’re able (or willing) to pay for. Some RV enthusiasts are fervent believers in only paying in cash, so they’re not left with lingering debt on an asset that is not going to build equity like a traditional home. But others believe that financing is worth it if you can do it responsibly (please don’t go “RV poor,” save that money for all the adventures you’ll want to have with your RV!).
Being firm with your budget actually helps your salesperson, because they’ll know the parameters they have to work within when showing you Class A RVs and other motorhomes.
5. Let the Sales Cycles Work in Your Favor
If you’re looking for the absolute best deal, visit your dealer when they have a greater urgency to sell. As with many businesses, you just might find that the end of each month could be a better time to snag a deal, since salespeople could have lingering sales quotas they need to meet. Additionally, the end of the camping season and the beginning of the offseason might be a good time to buy from some dealers, as there’s less consumer interest at these times, so they may be especially excited to see a customer walk through their door. Finally, check with your specific dealership, but late December could also be a prime time for a purchase, as many dealers are eager to make room on their lots for the new year’s inventory.
In each of those scenarios, your purchase could make all the difference for your dealer – and who knows? Maybe they’ll throw in a few extra perks in order to help clinch the deal!
BONUS TIP – Honor Your Salesperson’s Commitment
Your salesperson found you a gorgeous new fifth-wheel RV or other perfect motorhome, but you’re the type of person who needs to sleep on big decisions before making them. That’s okay! Just make sure that when you’re ready to come back in, it’s when that particular salesperson is working. They did all the work to connect you to your dream RV, so honor their efforts by making sure your business, and the commission, goes to them.
By Audrey Somero
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