RV shipments continue to decline

31

The RV Industry Association’s November survey of manufacturers found that total RV shipments ended the month with 29,644 wholesale shipments, a decrease of 10.2% from the 33,023 units shipped last November.

Towable RVs, led by conventional travel trailers, totaled 26,297 units for the month, a decrease of 8.9% compared to last November’s total of 28,868 units. Motorhomes finished the month with 3,347 units, down 19.4% compared to the November 2018 total of 4,155 units.

Through November, RV shipments have reached 378,554 units, down 16.9% from the 455,309 units at this point last year.

Park model RVs finished the month up 16.7% compared to last November with 308 wholesale shipments.

##RVT928b

31
Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  Subscribe  
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
kevin parker

I’m thinking a saturation point has been reached. I’m speculating there are simply fewer new buyers as parks, campgrounds, and other rec sites are so crowded that the camping mystique is gone. Existing owners are finding repairs, storage, poorly built RV’s, dedicated vehicles, rapid depreciation, homeless usage, and insurance costs start to exceed one’s price point when compared to alternatives. There are still a lot of RVs traveling but it seems there is a switch to alternatives such as Airbnb or VRBO rentals are way up. Hotels get a premium and often booked far in advance. Sure there is a significant population that will continue the RV life, but that slice of the population most likely will decline. If it continues that may present those that love the RV life with lower costs and better built RVs as the used ones go unsold and the manufacturers find that profitability comes for quality and not mass production.

Terry Moseley

Its not hard to see why RV sales are down. So many people are moving into vans and cargo trailers where they are building their own homes the way they want them and know they will last longer. Most RV’ers want to save money, not spend more every 5 years or so on a new rig. My choice is a cargo trailer for my living quarters for this very reason. It pulls great and does the job I intended for it very comfortably. I don’t know for sure ofcourse, but I am thinking it will last me at least 10 years, and if I need to change something on the inside of it, its ok cause its my work to begin with.

Vickie L McClellan-Benson

If they would stop listening to “accountants” telling them how to save money and started listening to actual people who live in and use RV’s, they would probably have higher sales. The biggest factor, in my opinion, is that the quality of new units is dismal, at best. Many of us are buying older models that were manufactured before Thor took over nearly all of the companies and the quality has decreased in every single one of them. I personally dislike their trend of eliminating rear & front windows I won’t buy an RV that I can’t see my tow rig from. Nor one that I can’t see in all four directions when something goes bump in the night.

Marvin Kirschnik

You get what you pay for! Let’s federally regulate these “monster..money thieving companies”..and then shut them down..hah..then you can complain about the job losses in America..I purchased a used hartland launch 18 fbr..less than a year old..for 10k$.previous owners used it one time,locally..I feel I got a great deal..low price and low weight..with all I need in it to spend a weekend at my favorite campgrounds..how are you worried about reservations? What with a little Internet and some early planning..you can reserve and prepay almost anywhere..also by reading campsite reviews on Google maps.you can choose a campsite to suit your needs and avoid mistakes by camping in substandard campgrounds..Hey..!Have you heard of the Internet..? Its an invaluable tool to help make your camping experience great..BTW my local dealer just built a new facility last year and is already adding a 3 highbay building for showroom and maintenance of rvs..tell me something he knows about the future of sales…m

Mark Wilson

Living in vans and buses is better

Frank Cicero

Speaking of class B s , The Ram promaster is junk , the sprinter is overpriced the transit is better then junk but not reliable. I would rather buy modular kits which is much more affordable and have a good warranty. Rv builders are overpriced with the exception of New West in Canada which offers a seven year warranty .

Don

Having been an RVer for 40 years and in the RV industry for the last 10, I agree with many of the posts. The manufacturers have a long ways to go. It is hard to produce a light weight home on wheels that holds up to constant vibration. Would your home hold up on a trailer doing 55 mph? I’m guessing many of these posters would rather spend a week in Las Vegas, where their money is well spent. Owning an RV is like having season tickets to a ball team. At the end of the year all you have is memories and enjoyment. If crowds, cheering and traffic after the game is what you enjoy, then stay away from RVing. If the quiet of a mountain campsite with the grandkids is your joy, then RVing is the right choice. As for the sales numbers, the industry has been on a roll much like the housing market. The market always corrects itself. Here in the Phoenix area, we had an increase in sales this year. With the summer being very good. Our entire family enjoys RVing. It’s a life style. Just remember, if you get into RVing bring along a tool box and a sense of humor! Enjoy!!

Ryan

200% mark up, wonder why??

Billy Bob Thorton

Tis a mere adjustment in supply and demand.

Ron melancon

Karma. Like Boeing the industry is producing dangerous RVS.

Liz Cress

I believe that more and more people are looking for good used RVs rather then putting their money into new versions. The odds are much less hassle with a used because it has been through any factory issues and the bugs have been fixed. Aside from the fact that they automatically depreciate 10,000 or more as soon as you leave the lot. The big company dealers out there could care less once you have bought you are on your own…

Jan

My RV is 1 year old. I bought brand new. The workmanship is horrible. The shower head came off the wall, the medicine chest fell off the wall in the bathroom while on the highway. Headboard fell off. Heater has had 2 boards replaced and has only worked less than 50%. The repair time has taken more that 6-8 weeks each time it has been brought in. It is an Estrada, is it any wonder there is a decline.

Silas Longshot

In Trump’s amazing economy, people seem to be going for other issues than RV’s, like perhaps houses, new cars, etc that they think they can now afford with the new job, maybe better pay with the old job where the company is now doing better. Then there’s the quality issue of typical RV’s…..I’ve had one of those ‘sticks and staples wrapped in a cola can’ units made by Gulf Stream, which rotted to pieces because of endlessly chasing water leaks. I would assume they (Gulf Stream) would brag in the same way that Jayco does with their similarly constructed crap.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aLHux4SuXbY
I’ve been researching the ‘new style’ vacuum bonded Azdel aluminum wall construction types. I may be deluding myself with this type, but at least the construction looks better and seems superior to sticks and staples. Then there’s the warranty issue….maybe 1 dealer in 20 actually gives a crap about service after the sale, it seems.

Tom

The $10k limit on tax deductions on the Federal tax returns that became effective in 2019 also play a part. The total of your real property taxes, state/city income taxes, sales taxes and personal property taxes are limited to $10k.

James

I don’t see why you keep reporting these numbers in a negative light. They are compared to last year which you were complaining were too high. Maybe shipments are becoming more reasonable and just might be sustainable which would tend to stabilize the industry. You are being negative when the numbers are high and negative when they are lower. Do I see a trend there?

Paul

I hope alot of the RV manufacturers go out of business. This will help reduce the number of shoddy manufacturers even though 83% are either forest River and The evil Thor brand. It is time for people to wake up to the horrible manufacturing process and lack of quality RVs being built. Legislation needs to happen to put these businesses in line and start building RVS that are not made in 1 day.

Ann

Not surprising. Tariffs have added an average of 5% to the price of an already expensive product. People are price sensitive when it comes to their toys.

Bob p

I’m afraid the auto industry will soon follow suit, they are pricing themselves out of business. When a vehicle costs more than a home and depreciation takes such a large portion of the purchase price within 2years of purchase the bottom is falling out quickly. Also with the RVs the way RV parks are where you need 6-9 months reservation to get in, the appeal to young families is looking bleak. Back in 1978 when I started camping we could load the camper and kids and be camping within 2 hours in at least 10 campgrounds and state parks for the weekend

Donald N Wright

Driving past the RV dealerships, the lot is full of unsold RV’s. I wonder how many RV’s are in line for repairs.

Mike

Without dealer stock numbers “units shipped” is only half the picture.