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So you want to sell your RV? Here are the best places to sell, and why

By Nanci Dixon
Whether you have had it with crowded campgrounds, have discovered RVing is just not for you, or are looking to upgrade or downsize, you might be asking: “Where’s the best place to sell my RV?” Let’s find out.

Prep work is critical before you sell your RV

First and foremost, in order to sell it as quickly as possible and for the most money, you’ll have to get it into tip-top shape. Read Tony Barthel’s article about this. There’s tons of great information there to get you started.

Know the going rate for your RV

Do some research ahead of time and decide what your personal bottom line is. What is the dollar amount that you will accept and what you’ll walk away from.

  • Take into account the season. Fall in the north usually sees a lot of RVs for sale at reduced prices. Higher prices are usually seen in the spring. The opposite can be true of southern, snowbird areas.
  • Be aware of supply and demand. Is there a huge inventory of your make/model on the market or is it pretty slim pickings?
  • The ups and downs of the economy, COVID restrictions, gas prices, crowded campgrounds, etc., can and will affect what you’re able to sell it for.

NADA guides are a good place to start to review RV prices.

Look online and see what others are selling their RVs for (preferably the same make/model as yours), and compare. See how much private sellers are selling them for versus manufacturers and dealerships. Know that the price asked is usually not the price that will be paid.

Sell your RV to a dealer

When your RV is ready to sell there are a variety of ways to go about it. Selling to a dealer is probably the easiest, but usually the most painful to the wallet.

If you are planning to trade it in for another RV, the dealer will make you a package deal. Remember, you can still negotiate the price of the new rig then reduce that negotiated price with the trade-in.

You are pretty much at the mercy of the dealer with trade-ins. They are a business and need to make money on the resale of your RV so expect a discounted trade-in offer versus selling it yourself.

The advantage of selling to the dealer is handing it off along with the keys and leaving with a check in your pocket.

Consignment sales

The next opportunity for an easy sale is taking it to a consignment lot. A number of dealers also take consignments. It is a great way for consignment lots and RV dealers to not have to tie up their money in a lot of used RVs.

Your RV will be displayed in an RV sales lot and that can attract a lot of potential buyers. The sales manager will give you an estimate on what the RV may sell for and then will be taking a percentage of that amount. You agree on a bottom-line price. The advantage is that it is fairly no-hassle, has good exposure, and will probably get a better price than at the dealer. The disadvantage is that it may languish on a lot longer than you want.

Self-sell your RV

Want to get as much money as you can, have the time to wait a bit, like meeting people and don’t mind multiple showings? Self-selling maybe the answer for you. Of course, safety and due diligence are of utmost importance. Be careful of scams, don’t show the RV at night and don’t hand over the keys for a test drive!

RV Trader is popular to sell an RV

RV Trader is one of the most popular places to sell an RV. We used it when we sold our 34-foot Class A Coachman and had good luck. It is also a great place to review what other RVs are going for.

RV Trader has different listing rates based on the number of photos, videos, length of time, and placement. Rates vary from Basic $54.95 (4 photos, 2 weeks), to Enhanced $109.95 (20 photos, video, 8 weeks), to Best $199.95 (50 photos, video, featured status, premium placement and 1 year).

RVT.com

RVT.com is a resource for both finding out what your RV can be listed for and placing an ad. It has a 5-star rating and has vast exposure to potential customers.

RVT is a great resource for placing an ad. Rates vary from Basic – $29.95 (30 days with 5 photos), Standard – $49.95 (10 photos, unlimited time), Premium – $99.95 (30 photos, video, unlimited time), Ultimate – $189.95 (unlimited photos, videos and time), and Ultimate National – $239.95 (unlimited photos and video, unlimited description, national homepage spotlight, bold red visibility, online until sold, and more).

craigslist.org

My husband has sold hundreds of cars on craigslist with good results. You will soon be able to distinguish between a weekend browser and someone more serious.

Scams on craigslist abound so watch out for the, “I want that RV! I am in the Navy right now and will have my buddy come pick it up. I can send you a cashier’s check.” Hmmm. Probably not.

Despite all that, craigslist provides a wide area to show off your RV and you may end up with a great price. craigslist now charges a minimal $5 fee to place an ad.

Classified ads

Several RV magazines, camping websites, camping clubs and even neighborhood bulletin boards have classified ad areas. If you’re staying at an RV park or campground, see if they’ll list it somewhere for you.

Facebook Marketplace

Facebook Marketplace offers a lot of visibility and, although not RV-specific, that visibility can get you the exposure that you need. There is no fee to place an ad or to join Facebook. You must have a Facebook account to list an ad, but the process is simple and straightforward and you can post it to RVing groups and communities across the platform.

Donate

Don’t want any hassle and need a tax deduction? There are several places that accept RVs as donations. Talk to your tax preparer first if expecting a deduction from the donation.

There are many places to donate such as: Vehicles for VeteransWheels For Wishes, and Breast Cancer car donations. 

Advertise when parked at home, at a sales facility, at campgrounds, when driving around, etc.

If you are casually looking to sell and have a lot of time, put a “For Sale” sign in the RV’s window with contact info and price. If it’s neon or brightly colored with big, bold text, it’s more likely to be seen. We had our motorhome posted on RVtrader.com but parked in an RV repair lot with a sign in the window. Numerous people called us and I directed them to the ad and that is actually how it finally sold. Funny thing – it was bought sight unseen. The buyer’s dad saw it and told his son to buy it!

About the money…

Sad as it is now, don’t trust someone handing you a cashier’s check, personal check or even a fistful of money. Demand that you meet at the bank and make sure everything is legit. There are a lot of ways people can be sneaky these days. Don’t take the chance.

The title and the law

Finally, know the laws in the state you are selling and in your home state. Do you need an emissions test? What about the license plate? Does the title need to be transferred at a state office? Does the RV need a vehicle title check? Don’t get to the end of the process and be derailed.

If you sell at a dealer, title transfer and restrictions aren’t a problem. However, if you are a do-it-yourself seller, it is always better to insist on transferring the title at the time of sale and not rely on the buyer to do the right thing in a timely manner.

Good luck! Oh, and if you haven’t already, as mentioned above, be sure and read Tony’s article on how to get your RV ready to sell.

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vicki
6 months ago

When selling an RV by owner, what is the safest way to exchange money? Take a personal check? cashier’s check? transfer from bank to bank? How can money be transferred from bank to bank? Or, if taking a personal check, how do you know the check is good? I appreciate any advice. Thank you.

Drew
6 months ago
Reply to  vicki

Vicki,

Except for one case (about 30 years ago) I’ve only accepted cash. Anything else is very risky- ESPECIALLY a personal check. I took a cashier’s check once and it was ok. I would always transact a cash deal at my house…usually when another adult was present as well. Both of us counted the cash to be sure the amount was correct. After selling about 10 vehicles I’ve found this to be the best and most efficient method.

Ronnie Bolling
6 months ago
Reply to  vicki

Here’s my advice: meet the buyer at their bank and have the BANK write you a cashiers check, notarize the Bill of Sale, etc. IMO that’s safer than taking cash. Just how I do it, your mileage may vary. Good luck!

Ron T.
6 months ago

We are lucky to live on a fairly busy state highway (and not mind the traffic). It took 3 days to sell our last car with it parked at the end of the driveway. Our old RV often sat in that driveway during the summer months. When I put the sale sign in it and went off to do my volunteer job, I got three calls in just a few hours. By the time I got home the eventual buyer had already come by with his wife and kids to look at it. He’d seen it from the road many times and couldn’t believe it was finally for sale. He showed up with the money the next day. Like they say it’s Location, Location, Location, and priced to sell doesn’t hurt either.

Jon
6 months ago

I would be very careful when using the consignment route. Check your insurance policy carefully. Some policies will void the physical damage, and some even the liability coverage when the RV is, to quote a popular RV insurer: ” while it is in the custody of a person other than you or a relative for the purpose of selling, renting or leasing your recreational vehicle”.

Drew
6 months ago
Reply to  Jon

Ditto about the consignment lots. Your rv is out of your control and no one but you- the owner takes care with it. It could be on a dealer’s lot for weeks, unlocked most of the time. Around here Craigslist is a joke- unless you just want to be harassed constantly….”Give me your checking acct # and I’ll deposit your full price in cash.” This and other schemes abound. I’d use the energy to sell it myself with the help of RV Trader and maybe a local classified add. The “For Sale” sign is good too when you can actually be on the premises to be available.

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