If you're in the market to purchase or sell a recreational vehicle, you're probably wondering if using an online RV sales site is the best option for you. Shawn Friesen, Managing Director of RVT.com, shares his insight on this subject with LoveToKnow Camping readers in this exclusive expert interview.
Online RV Sales Tips for Buyers
Why is it a good idea to use an online resource when looking to purchase an RV?
Firstly, most (if not all) online resources for buying or selling are free to browse. Secondly, an online resource, if set up properly, allows you to search your local region, statewide, nationally or even globally and lets you search for a specific item, by keyword or other criteria. This eliminates having to pore through irrelevant material. Thirdly, many online services are far cheaper than print for a seller to advertise in, so a buyer will find items not listed in print.
Are there risks associated with shopping for RVs online?
Yes, there are risks associated. The most common being scam ads, which attempt to lure an unsuspecting buyer into sending money by placing a ridiculously low-priced unit and requesting money for a down payment be sent. Buyers think they are getting an amazing deal, but on the other end is a crook who takes the money and disappears.
For buyers to protect themselves, never inquire on an RV that has a price too good to be true, because 99 percent of the time it is a scam. Also, use a reputable escrow service when you can't do a deal face to face. An escrow service acts as a go between for the buyer and seller. The service holds your money until you have received and inspected the RV. If there was a problem, you could easily get your money back.
What tips do you have to help people find the right RV when searching online?
It helps to know what you want before you buy, because there are literally over 100,000 RVs available online. You will need to access a popular RV classifieds site, such as RVT.com, that has a large selection and allows you to narrow your search down by year, make, model, state/region and other criteria. The beauty of the Internet is the ability to search large volumes of information quickly and turn up only results for exactly what you're looking for.
Expert Suggestions for Sellers
How can listing an RV for sale with RVT.com benefit individuals who want to sell their recreational vehicles?
RVT.com draws millions of RV buyers from all areas of the USA and Canada. We specialize in connecting these buyers with the seller that has the type of RV they are looking for. Advertisers on our site often sell within days or weeks of placing an ad, sometimes with multiple backup offers. Also, we have an option to list the RV "Until Sold," making for an effective and economical means of advertising an RV.
What are some of the most common mistakes that you see sellers making?
The most common (and most hindering to the sale) mistake is having an unrealistic price. It's important to set your price in line with the current market values. Often a unit that gets no response has a price that is too high, and as soon as the price is set realistically, the RV gets responses.
A few resources to help sellers research current RV values are:
- The RVT.com PriceChecker - This feature or RVT.com searches the site for specific RVs and returns average price information.
- NadaGuides - This publication is a trusted pricing and information guide that gives average retails values of most RV makes and models.
- Local Dealers -- Call local dealerships, as they may have access to the Kelley Blue Book, which is similar to NadaGuides. Also, the dealer should have a 'feel' for what the market could 'fetch' for the seller's particular RV. Beware of a "lowball" price though; the dealer may be looking to buy or consign your unit and pay you less than its worth.
Is there an average length of time a seller can expect it to take to find a buyer?
Average length of selling time hinges on many factors. Price, time of year, type of RV and economy all play import roles in the length it takes to sell. Some RVs sell within hours, others years or never. We have a number of tips that can help a seller make the most of his/her RVT ad listing. Adding plenty of clear, color photos, placing small classified ad in local newspaper, pointing prospective buyers to their RVT ad, ensuring their price is set right, etc. See Tips to Help Sell Your Own RV for ideas you can use.
Additional RVT.com Services
RVT also provides access to interesting articles pertinent to the RV lifestyle, via our blog, newsletter, articles and Breaking RV News area. We have also partnered with GetRV.com to bring you RV Rentals North America wide. The site provides many other links to industries servicing the RV industry.
LoveToKnow Camping would like to thank Shawn Friesen for taking time from his busy schedule to share his expertise about online RV sales with readers and wishes him continued success with RVT.com.