How to Find Book Values for RVs

Mary Gormandy White
screenshot of http://www.nadaguides.com/RVs

If you're in the market to sell or buy a recreational vehicle, it's only natural to look for a published source that can help you learn about market values for new and used models. While Kelley Blue Book no longer publishes RV valuations, you can find information about camper values through NADA's publications and website.

Finding RV Values

NADA Appraisal Guide

The NADA Recreational Vehicle Appraisal Guide is the industry-standard resource book for valuing campers. The guide is updated and published three times each year, with new versions coming out each January, May and September. Each edition features updated wholesale, retail and suggested list prices for all types of campers, ranging from truck campers to high-end motor homes. The book even includes park models and heavy-duty tow vehicles. Each book features valuation information for the current model year and the 15 previous model years, making it an ideal resource for buyers and sellers alike.

Since many factors impact the potential value of a particular unit, the book includes much more than just a base dollar value. For example, there are mileage tables that readers can use to adjust the value up or down based on the number of miles a motor home has been driven. There are also sections that provide details on how optional equipment impacts value along with a schedule of freight charges to take into consideration for units that may have to be shipped.

You can purchase a one-year subscription for $137, or buy only the most current edition for $69. If you purchase from the NADA Guide Store, there is no charge for shipping and handling. Quantity discounts are available to customers who purchase multiple subscriptions.

Versions from past years can sometimes be found on Amazon.com and eBay. Older books can be useful if you are purchasing a unit more than 15 years old, though you should keep in mind that the values in the book are based on the year of publication. Pricing should be reduced based on depreciation since publication date, or possibly increased if the unit is a very well-kept or restored vintage RV.

NADA Website

The NADA website also features new and used valuation information on all types of recreational vehicles. The website is free to use and simple to navigate. However, you will have to enter details for every model you want to find pricing on, so using it can be time consuming if you want to pull information on a number of models.

  1. When you go to the website, you will need to enter your zip code to proceed.
  2. Once you have entered your zip code, you can choose to browse RVs by type (travel trailer, fifth wheel, motor home, pop-up camper, park model or truck camper) or manufacturer. Simply click the option of your choice to proceed.
  3. If you choose type of RV, you will be taken to a list of manufacturers that offer the specific type of unit selected, and you'll need to choose one to proceed.
  4. Once you have specified a manufacturer, you will see all available model and year options based on the search information you have chosen to this point.
  5. After you select a specific unit type, you will advance to a screen that lists all available options. Click the box for each option that applies to the unit you are considering, then click continue.
  6. The next screen will provide you with a suggested list price, as well as the highest and lowest prices that might be appropriate based on condition, use, location and other factors.

If you have a vehicle identification number for a specific RV that you want to learn more about, you can enter it on the same screen where pricing information is given to get an RV History Report from RVChecks.com. There is a $24.95 fee to order a report. Note that this report does not provide additional pricing information, but can give you service and repair information on a particular camper, much like a CARFAX report provides on automobiles.

Make Informed Pricing Decision

Whether you are selling or purchasing an RV, it's important to be aware of fair market value for the particular kind of unit you are dealing with. NADA is a great resource to rely on when you are deciding how much to ask for a camper than you no longer need or when you are trying to find out how much to pay for one that you are thinking about buying.

How to Find Book Values for RVs