What to Consider When Buying an RV

Buying an RV

Did you know that in the last 20 years RV ownership has risen over 62%? The increase in RV popularity shows how versatile they have become. They no longer serve just one purpose or type of owner. 

This also means that RVs range in shape, size, and accommodation to suit their large demographic of users. So, if you are in the market for one, then you have some choices to make. 

Start with this guide to buying an RV to see what you need to consider. 

What Will You Use Your RV For?

When you buy a motorhome or an RV, you are making an investment, therefore, you should know how you are going to use that investment. 

First, decide how you will use your RV by thinking about the following items.


Where do you plan to travel in your RV? Think about how far you will be traveling, so you choose an RV that is comfortable for long trips. If you aren’t going far, rather you plan to live in an RV in your current city then you could choose a larger RV since you won’t need to handle it on the road. 

Shorter trips or destinations that involve only travel not overnight stays in the RV means that your vehicle could be smaller. 


Your destinations will also affect the types of weather you encounter. You need to think about road conditions if you travel through harsh weather. Or think about hot and humid conditions that require an AC or rainy weather that prevents you from cooking outdoors without a covering. 

Time Spent in the RV

How much time do you plan to spend in your RV? This includes driving time and parked time. If you are only using the RV as transportation then you don’t need a complete mobile home. However, if you plan to live in the RV then you need certain features like a stove and refrigerator, plus sleeping areas. 

Things to Bring With You

How you use your RV also determines your luggage load and accessories. You may only need your clothes and toiletries if you are traveling to a hotel or a family member’s house. But, living in an RV means that you want the comforts of home. So, you may want to bring your laptop for work or your bicycle for leisure and exercise. 

Regular or Occasional Use

Will you be using your RV once a year for a family vacation or will it be used regularly? There is a major difference between occasionally using your RV and living in it every day. This decision will affect what type of RV you buy and if you should consider renting one instead. 

Decide How Many People Will be on Board

Once you decide how you will use your RV, you next want to think about how many people will be in it. The last thing you want is to feel cramped in your RV. However, you also don’t want to drive around a huge motorhome if it isn’t necessary. 

Find a middle ground between traveling comfortably with the proper amount of space without going overboard or over budget. Buying an RV that is too large means that you are paying for something you don’t need. 

Make a List of Required Features

Van life isn’t what it used to be. You don’t have to sacrifice luxury to live on the road. It is quite the opposite now as RV’s include more features than a traditional home. 

However, each RV has its own highlights, so you may need to choose what features matter most to use. 

Make a list of what features you require, which ones are nice to have, and which ones don’t matter to you. This will help you eliminate certain models and narrow your search. 

What Activities Will You Be Doing?

In addition to a list of features, you also want to consider the types of activities you will do while traveling in your RV. Some RVs accommodate certain lifestyles. For example, they may come with an attached portable garage for off-road vehicles or other outdoor gear. 

You may have a large family and plan to cook every night, so having an outdoor kitchen will be helpful. Additional outdoor living space, like a retractable awning, will complete your space. 

Do You Prefer a New or Used RV?

Now that you know how you will use your RV, you want to start browsing for your vehicle. First, decide whether a new motorhome fits your budget and lifestyle. Or, a used motorhome may be more cost-effective and still include the features you want. 

Is Renting Better Than Buying?

Another option is to rent rather than buy an RV. If you are only using your RV for occasional travel or vacation, renting may be a better idea than spending money on your own RV. 

Would You Consider Sharing an RV?

Owning an RV can be expensive, but renting may not appeal to you. Sharing the cost with another family will allow you to own an RV for a fraction of the cost. Then divide the time with the RV between both families. 

Pick an RV Style

There are many styles of RVs, including large class A motorhomes, thor class b coaches, class C Winnebagos, travel trailers, 5th wheels, and toy haulers.

Use the decisions you made in this guide to pick the perfect RV for your lifestyle. 

Set a Budget and Consider Finance Options

As you browse RV makes and models, be sure to have a budget set. You need to also consider finance options with your bank if you aren’t playing cash. 

Understanding RV Maintenance

After buying your RV, maintaining it is important to get the most life out of it. Unlike cars, RVs require more care since they often include a bathroom, water supply, and gas or electrical hookups. 

Take a course on RV maintenance and create a schedule to keep your vehicle in top condition. 

Buying an RV the Right Way

Take your time when buying an RV to ensure that you get the features you want and are able to travel comfortably. Creating a plan before you start browsing will make the process easier. Then once you have your RV, you will be content with your decision. 

Check out our Lifestyle section for more tips to enjoy with your family and friends.

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