Is this dealer trustworthy?

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irvsiegel

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Benicia, CA
? ?My wife and I are in the market for a new entry level Class A motorhome.? We have only had a Class B RV in the past, and we didn't use it that much because it was too small for us (I bought it when I was single).? In our search for our new RV, we've found one that we really like, but something has come up with the dealer that makes me think that he's not completely trustworthy.? I'd like to get opinions from more experienced RV people.

? ?At another dealership, the dealer was happy to provide us with the MSRP on the letterhead of the manufacturer (Fleetwood).? It showed the suggested retail price of the particular model, what items were standard at no extra charge, and optional equipment installed on the vehicle (with a total price of all of the options), a destination charge, a dealer prep charge, and an "other" charge for $4.05.? However this unit is not our first choice.? We prefer one that we saw at another dealer, but this other dealer told us that he did not have a copy of the manufacturer's sticker price.? Instead, he gave me an MSRP on the dealer's letterhead that showed a combined "base and options" MSRP.? I asked for a breakdown of what came standard and what was an option, and the salesman just took a brochure and checked off those optional items that were on the unit (he did this from memory, and made at least one mistake that I know of).

? ?I didn't like that, so when I got home I called the manufacturer and asked them if they had a breakdown of the base cost and the cost of the options on this unit (I had the serial number).? The manufacturer faxed me the information I needed, and when I added everything up, it came to a price that was about $13,000 less than what the dealer said the MSRP was.? There's some margin for error here, for a couple of reasons that I won't go into, but there's no way that it could come to $13,000!? I don't want to mention the name of the manufacturer or the dealer on a public forum, but I will be happy to discuss it privately.? In the meantime, what do other people think about this situation?? Is this as weird as it seems to me?? How can a salesman at a fairly large dealership possibly remember every piece of optional equipment on all of the units that he has for sale?? That's apparently what salesmen at this dealership have to do, since they don't have access to the manufacturers' stickers.

? ?My feeling is that they have jacked up the MSRP by $13,000 or so in order to make it appear that they are offering much larger discounts than other dealers.? If that's true, then they are certainly acting unethically (and possiblly illegally), and if I find that to be the case then I certainly will "out" them publicly.? But for now I want to give them the benefit of the doubt, since I'm not absolutely sure about what's going on.? What do you think?

Sincerely,

Irv Siegel
 

Jim Dick

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Hi Irv,

Since you have gotten the "real" MSRP from the manufacturer and it disagrees that much with the dealer I would walk away. Sounds to me like they are not being honest with their customers from the start. I'd really hate to buy from them and then find out their service is just as bad. I think all dealers have the MSRP sheets available. Some don't choose to put them in the rig but certainly should provide them when asked.
 

John From Detroit

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Apr 12, 2005
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Davison Michigan
MSRP I do not know about.  Sticker prices I do, and those are set by the dealer who decides how much THEY will mark stuff up.

However a good rule when making major purchases (most any purchase with, depending on the buyer more than 1 or 2 digits left of the price tag, and clearly ANY purchase with a comma in the price tag)

If there is something you are suspicious about  Show that dealer your backside... Going out the  door.


Side note: Many years ago (MANY years ago) I worked at (not for but at) a K-Mart store, the general manager of the store often told us that a customer unhappy with the store cost as much as a full color multi page ad in the Sunday Newspaper.

I'd like to think that with the internet, today, we are MUCH more expensive.  But it don't cost the shady dealer one cent if you don't tell us who it is.

I also post the names of dealers who treat me well  (I'm very happy, for example, with some warranty work done by Wheeler's RV in Las Vegas.  Specially since I did not buy the rig there)
 

Shayne

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As I've previously stated, It's what the dealer is willing to sell it for. ?The MSRP nor sticker price really mean nothing except a guide for you to look at with confusion., ?Sticker will vary dealer to dealer. MSRP will vary depending on location of the dealer, because the frieight varies from dealer to dealer. Yes you can get an idea on MSRP ?to figure the discount you think you should pay but not off the dealers sticker. ?If it's a new unit the ILINOIS law used to be it had to have a MSRP sticker on the unit ?at time of purchase and delivery. ?Not sure wheather that holds true any more. ?The dealer was not allowed to remove it for any reason. ?Should be law everywhere. ?
? ? If that's the unit you like but don;'t like his tactics, return to him and get a list of everything on the unit and tell him you want to mull it over. ? Go Home and make some calls to dealers handling said unit. ?Get their price. ? If you want to try to buy near home make the guy an offer ?Most he can do is say no. ?If yo don't get the price you want, again walk and buy elsewhere. ?Warranty work are manufacturers see it must be done by any authorized dealer but prep work and things a dealer is to take care of is up to the selling dealer, such as adjustments. ?That then becomes your call as to where you wish to buy, figuring in where and how often you need to make a trip for service. ?Good luck on your purchasing venture.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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If he is hiding the true MSRP and playing games with you like that, I would walk run out the door. There are plenty enough pitfalls in buying without having a dealer who plays games with your money.

There are other dealers selling the same model - doesn't have to be in your home town or even anywhere near it. The warranty is good anywhere (you travel in these things - it doesn't break down at home anyway!).
 

Shayne

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Jan 22, 2006
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What exactly are you looking for? Perhaps someone here can help you in selecting a dealer if we knew what you are contemplating on purchasing.  Many of us have been buying units for 50 yrs or near it.  We've run into dealers that we wouldn't even mention their name let alone recommend them.  Also there is a flip side to that. Many do recommend certain dealers.  You can buy a unit anywhere inthe country and warranty can be performed anywhere in the country.  On appliances and such not always by an RV Dealer but by appliance dealers. Buy whereever you please.  Example  I know a place I believe in in Fl that sells Georgie Boy Forrest River, and Tiffin  products.  Also there are many here that also deal with a Large dealer handling many products in Fl. Other in Indiana, N. Dak, S. Dak, Mich,  and so one. So shuld you identify where you are from perhaps some of your stress can be relieved buy stating so, and it could result in non-tension might make it easier for you.  Just a thought
 

Jeff

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Shayne said:
As I've previously stated, It's what the dealer is willing to sell it for.  The MSRP nor sticker price really mean nothing except a guide for you to look at with confusion.,  Sticker will vary dealer to dealer. MSRP will vary depending on location of the dealer, because the frieight varies from dealer to dealer. Yes you can get an idea on MSRP  to figure the discount you think you should pay but not off the dealers sticker.  If it's a new unit the ILINOIS law used to be it had to have a MSRP sticker on the unit  at time of purchase and delivery.  Not sure wheather that holds true any more.  The dealer was not allowed to remove it for any reason.  Should be law everywhere. 
    If that's the unit you like but don;'t like his tactics, return to him and get a list of everything on the unit and tell him you want to mull it over.  Go Home and make some calls to dealers handling said unit.  Get their price.  If you want to try to buy near home make the guy an offer  Most he can do is say no.  If yo don't get the price you want, again walk and buy elsewhere.  Warranty work are manufacturers see it must be done by any authorized dealer but prep work and things a dealer is to take care of is up to the selling dealer, such as adjustments.  That then becomes your call as to where you wish to buy, figuring in where and how often you need to make a trip for service.  Good luck on your purchasing venture.

Shayne:

This dealer has already shown his willingness to lie by stating he does not have a FW MSRP and instead misrepresented the price on his own equipment list. Why do business with someone who is willing to do that? He is probably willing to do more to you.
 

Carl L

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Jeff Cousins said:
Shayne:

This dealer has already shown his willingness to lie by stating he does not have a FW MSRP and instead misrepresented the price on his own equipment list. Why do business with someone who is willing to do that? He is probably willing to do more to you.

Indeed, like the old saw goes, the first time a guy tries to cheat you, he is just practicing. 
 

Shayne

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Jan 22, 2006
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I realize that Jeff but I just love to rub salt in their wounds once I have a better deal.  You never know when the stupe will uncork an outstanding deal for you to take advantage of.  I've seen it happen before.  If I can save money I will.
 

irvsiegel

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Apr 27, 2006
Posts
138
Location
Benicia, CA
? ?First, thank you to everyone who replied with your wisdom and advice.? Most of the advice was to avoid purchasing from this dealer, and indeed we are following that advice.? The dealer's actions have turned out to be deceptive, insulting, unethical, dishonest, and possibly illegal.

? ?The unit that we were looking at is the Forest River Georgetown 342 at Camping Time RV in St. Augustine, Florida.? They are assoicated with Camping World.? Needless to say, we won't be purchasing anything at Camping World either.? The sales manager, Joe Andrick, refused to give us a copy of the MSRP as supplied by Forest River.? We were told, both verbally and in writing on Camping Time RV stationary, that the MSRP was $114,683.69 and that we were getting a discount from the MSRP of $34,684.99 plus a $2000 gift certificate at Camping World, for a total discount of $36,684.99!? Wow!? Seemed too good to be true.? And it was.? Having asked for the MSRP sticker the last time that we were there, and being told by the salesman that he did not have it, I called Forest River and asked them to send me the MSRP of this coach (I had the serial number).? They sent me their pricing sheet and I had to add the numbers up myself, but everything was there:? the base price of the 342, the list of options that were on it, and the price of each of those options.? I added everything up and it came to $101,465.? There was no figure for destination charge, and it's remotely possible that I left something off, but not over $13,000 worth.

? ?When I asked Mr. Andrick for the breakdown of the $114,683.69 he refused to do so and became very rude and started shouting and yelling at me and finally told me not to buy an RV there.

? ?I don't mind if a dealer wants to set the price of a unit above they MSRP.? They have every right to do so.? But to then claim that the increased price is the actual MSRP and that they are offering it for sale at a much larger discount from MSRP than is actually the case, well that's just plain deceptive, insulting, unethical, dishonest, and possibly illegal.? Hmmm.? I said that before.? Well, in any event, as much as we liked the coach itself, we won't be purchasing it.? Tomorrow I'm sending out letters to Forest River, the St. Augustine Chamber of Commerce, the Florida Attorney General, and the Recreational Vehicle Industry Association, describing how I was treated at Camping Time RV.? If anyone can think of someplace else I should write to, please let me know.? And please stay away from Camping Time RV and Camping World!

Sincerely,

  Irv Siegel

 

Jeff

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Irv:

As someone mentioned earlier (or perhaps in another thread) Camping World has co-located several of their new stores with RV dealers around the country but they do not own those dealerships. Camping Time RV is an independent business.
 

Shayne

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Jan 22, 2006
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Forrest River Products are also handled by Rivers Bus and RV in Jacksonville< Fl  and Jimmy Ballard is a friend of mine  Located on I-10 on the for western edge of Jville, quite a ways from downtown.,  Give Jimmy a call.  He treated me very good and was honest with me when I bought over the phone while in St Louis area and when I got there things were just as he said. Won't hurt to give him a call beings you are in the area.  You can always walk away if not satisfied. Then if you do  Tell him I'll skin him alive. 
 

irvsiegel

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Apr 27, 2006
Posts
138
Location
Benicia, CA
    Thank you to everyone who replied.

    Shayne, thank you for pointing me towards a local Forest River dealer.  Unfortunately they don't have this particular model in stock.  It's the Georgetown 342, which has a bathtub.  The bathtub is important since my wife wants it.  I've found only two new 342's in the country, and one's a 2005 model up in New Jersey.  We've just about given up on a Georgetown and are now looking at the Fleetwood Terra 32S and the Damon Daybreak 3270.
 

Shayne

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tell Jimmy Ballard what you want  Perhaps he can get it for you from the other dealer.  They do trade off quite often.
 

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