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How to Find Book Values for RVs

Mary Gormandy White
RV Salesperson on Cell Phone

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 (National Automobile Dealers Association).

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 14 years before that, 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.

NADA Guide Pricing

You can purchase a one-year subscription for just under $150. This includes three issues of the guide. Alternatively, you can buy just the most recent edition for about $75. If you purchase from the NADA Guides 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 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.

Finding RV Values on NADA's 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. screenshot of http://www.nadaguides.com/RVs
    Click on the large "Start Here" button to research pricing for used and new RVs.
  2. Choose to browse by the manufacturer or by RV type (travel trailers, motor homes, camping trailers, park models, truck campers, or tow vehicles). Simply click the option of your choice to proceed.
  3. If you choose the 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 can choose the model year and look through the list of models based on the search information you have provided up to this point.
  5. After you select a specific model, you will be prompted to enter your zip code.
  6. You will then 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. Alternatively, you can opt to get base pricing.
  7. The next screen will provide you with a suggested list price, as well as the lowest and average retail prices that might be appropriate based on condition, use, location and other factors.

RV Trader Price Checker

Another useful tool for checking the fair market value of RVs is the Price Checker on RV Trader. The web utility will display the average, highest, and lowest price based on your search criteria.

  1. Choose whether you'd like to conduct a nationwide search or if you'd like to search near a specific zip code. With the latter, you can select a search radius between 10 and 400 miles.
  2. Pick the type or types of RVs that interest you, ranging from Class A recreational vehicles to toy hauler travel trailers.
  3. Choose the makes and models of interest. You can select multiple makes and models of RVs.
  4. Select the trim level for each make and model you picked in the previous steps.
  5. Set a year range (minimum and maximum) or opt to set no year.
  6. Click the green "Check Price" button.

RVchecks Reports

If you have a vehicle identification number (VIN) for a specific RV that you want to learn more about, you can order an RV History Report from RVChecks.com. A single detailed report with 30 days of access costs just under $25. You can also order three RV History Reports for about $50, including the same 30 days of access.

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 an 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.

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How to Find Book Values for RVs