How do you vote? No, I’m not talking politics here. I’m wondering about your preference: new or used? I think a lot has to do with the way you grew up. And one notion is neither right nor wrong compared to the other. My hubby grew up “new” all the way. His family, though not wealthy, operated with the notion: “Let’s not buy someone else’s problems. We’ll get new.” As for me – well, I definitely grew up with the “used” mindset: “Why pay for something that immediately loses value once you drive it off the lot?” The new-or-used mindset has caused many discussions during our enduring (and endearing) marriage. I should have guessed it would eventually enter into the topic of RVs.
The search for new
Last summer, the Derecho (inland hurricane-force storm) blew our new RV over. It was a total loss. Though no one was hurt, I realized the new versus used conversation was inevitable. And I dreaded it. After a depressing trip through our local RV dealer’s lot, we both agreed to see what “pre-owned” rigs were available.
The search for used
We searched online for days. And then? The exact make and model of the RV we’d lost in the storm popped up in our search! Wow! It seemed like a no-brainer to me. We could spend a lot less time considering floor plans because we’d already lived in this model. It would take me all of ten minutes to pack the unit with our necessities because I’d been there and done that! We knew our truck would easily pull this fifth wheel because we’d pulled its exact twin down the road for several months! And the best part? The “used” RV was in Colorado. Can you say, “Road trip”? I was sold!
Hubby, on the other hand, needed time to consider the many ramifications of buying “used.” He spoke with the RV owner several times over the course of two full weeks. He asked for maintenance records, the number and types of trips taken, and much, much more! And then? The Colorado owner mentioned those magical words: Transferable Extended Private Warranty. While not big proponents of such things, it finally tipped the scales toward our “used” decision. We traveled to Colorado, purchased the RV, and have had no problems … so far.
What a difference a year makes! RV dealers’ lots are barren. Used RVs are selling well above their original list price from a few years ago. Demand is off the charts and availability is hard to find. Within all of this is our “new normal.”
Where do you stand? New or used? Maybe I should include “first available” as an option. I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.