Questions about purchasing an RV

The friendliest place on the web for anyone with an RV or an interest in RVing!
If you have answers, please help by responding to the unanswered posts.

jslocum

Member
Joined
Oct 7, 2005
Posts
11
Hi all,

I'm new here.  The wife and I (and two girls 12 and 10) are getting close to buying an RV.  We're looking at a Pace Arrow 36D.  I have a few questions if you all don't mind.  Let me describe my situation first...

We live in rural PA.  There are not a lot of RV dealers within 100 miles, but fortunately there is one really close to us.  I like the thought of buying from a local dealer.  This would make it easy if it ever needs repairs.  I've heard that you can get great deals at RV shows, but then I would be buying from someone I would probably never see again.  I don't mind paying a little more for the convenience/reassurance of having the support of a local dealer, I just want to make sure I don't pay too much.

So, here are my questions...

1.) Is it really a benefit to buy locally?
2.) I assume cars are like RV's and no one pays sticker price.  Are there any general guidelines/expectations on what price I should expect to get below sticker?  10%, 20%, 30%? 
3.) Anyone have any experience/comments/questions on the 36D.  The 36D is the one with the slideout that runs almost the full length of one side.  I'm wondering if that long a slideout is really viable. Anyone heard anything good or bad?

Thanks in advance for any insights.

John
 

caltex

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 14, 2005
Posts
731
Location
North Texas/Northern California
I don't know anything about the Pace  Arrow, but I certainly recommend a local dealer -- if he is a good dealer.  You will have several "fix it" items in the first six months and don't want to drive several hundred miles each time (or leave your coach for several weeks).  However if your dealer isn't a good one, he might as well be a thousand miles away.

The full length slide is really intriguing, great for the floor plan if it will stand up over time.
 

Tom

Administrator
Joined
Jan 13, 2005
Posts
48,126
jslocum said:
Are there any general guidelines/expectations on what price I should expect to get below sticker?

Reports vary, but 20-25% is the kind of range. If you buy a new coach that's last year's model you might do better.

My dealer is one of those who might as well be 1,000 miles away. I've driven to the factory service centers in Indiana and Oregon rather than go back to that dealer.
 

rhmahoney

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 9, 2005
Posts
1,405
Hang arround the serviced area and quiz the custmers as to their satisfaction with the dealer.
 

jslocum

Member
Joined
Oct 7, 2005
Posts
11
Thanks everyone for the input.  The first number the dealer threw out was 23% below sticker price, so I'm feeling better about the deal.
 

Ron

Moderator Emeritus
Joined
Jan 29, 2005
Posts
18,082
Location
Home is where we park it
jslocum said:
Thanks everyone for the input.? The first number the dealer threw out was 23% below sticker price, so I'm feeling better about the deal.

Try to get 35% or more.  Should be able to get between 25 and 35%, maybe even more if the dealer is hungery.
 

quasi

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 31, 2005
Posts
49
Location
Northern Kentucky
jslocum,
Ask your local dealer if he went to the show in Allentown last weekend. If so, there may be some show prices available. Most dealers will offer show pricing at their showroom. Also, I would recommend going here:
http://www.rv.org/store_1.htm
They will give you a rating (that I'm only partly comfortable with) and will tell you the percentage of list price that other buyers paid for the same unit. They may not have numbers on the newest models but it's worth a look.
Q
 

caltex

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 14, 2005
Posts
731
Location
North Texas/Northern California
Winnebago's invoice is about 28.5% off the list. I don't know what spread other companies have but it shouldn't be too different. As we know. dealers don't always pay invoice for their products because of manufacturing incentives, promotions, etc., but it's a good reference point.
 

Tom

Administrator
Joined
Jan 13, 2005
Posts
48,126
That is a good data point. Don't recall seeing that number before. It should give folks something to work with when negotiating.
 

jslocum

Member
Joined
Oct 7, 2005
Posts
11
Thanks again... that's all good information.  I'll post back when/if I finally purchase. :)
 

jslocum

Member
Joined
Oct 7, 2005
Posts
11
I've got a follow up question concerning financing vs. buying outright.  I understand that a motorhome qualifies as a second home and therefore the interest is tax deductible.  I might be able to swing it to pay for it outright, but I don't want to make a mistake if financing would be smarter.  Do any of you have any thoughts on this?
 

quasi

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 31, 2005
Posts
49
Location
Northern Kentucky
The answer to your question depends on your specific circumstances. If you finance, the bulk of the interest comes up front (thanks to the rule of 78ths) and so would any interest deduction. Understand that a deduction allows you a portion of what you've spent on interest to be saved on your taxes. If you save that portion of the interest, add the amount of interest or dividends earned on the money you kept in savings, deduct any taxes due on those earnings, and calculate your net, you'll probably find that it's better to pay cash if you can. To help clear up the above confusion, you can go here:
http://www.bankofamerica.com/financialtools/index.cfm?view=planning&calcid=auto04
This is a good cash vs finance calculator.
Q
 

BernieD

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 1, 2005
Posts
5,863
Location
Goodyear, AZ
Q

Very few major financial institutions use the Rule of 78 anymore, which is only applicable in early payoffs anyways. Interest is almost always calculated nowadays via simple interest on the outstanding loan balance. Since the outstanding balance is highest the first month and goes down slightly with each payment, you will also have a higher interest cost early in the life of the loan.

As you stated, under the right circumstances interest on a loan to purchase a motor home is eligible for the home interest tax deduction. Of course, home interest is one of the things being suggested as being eliminated by the Tax Revision panel. And as always, in cold cash a tax deduction is only worth the amount of your deduction times your tax bracket rate, you never save 100% as you said.

However, if you have some investments that are earning 10% and you get a loan costing 6.5%, you are better keeping your money in the investment and taking out a loan on the RV.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

Site Team
Joined
Feb 2, 2005
Posts
72,175
Location
At our Silver Springs FL home
Buying locally may or may not be an advantage.  What you need is a dealer with a strong service department tha works hard to satisfy their customers. By that, I mean their SERVICE customers.  Unfortunately, a lot of dealers try to make all their income in the salesroom and don't put much effort into the service area. If that is the case with your local dealer, buying there won't help because once you take delivery you are dealing with the Service Mgr, not the Sales Mgr. 

Conversely, if the Service Dept is a good one, it won't make any difference where you bought the coach, because you are THEIR customer anyway once you bring in your rig for service.

You should also know that any Pace dealer can provide warranty service and will get reimbursed by Pace/Fleetwood just the same as the selling dealer. The seller isn't not likely  to give you anything that Pace isn't paying for.  Furthermore, much of the warranty work (hopefully you won't need much) is done at the cost of other manufacturers anyway. The chassis has a separate warranty from the chassis manufacturer, the engine & tranny from their respective manufacturers, and so on for the tires, the refrigerator, a/c units, water heater, etc. etc.  For some of those things you will almost surely have to see a different dealer to get warranty work done, e.g. maybe Cummins for the engine, Allison for the tranny, etc.
 
Top Bottom