What to Consider When Buying a Used RV?

Just like with buying a used car, there are some great advantages to purchasing a used RV. It’s a great option for getting a great deal on the perfect RV that fits your needs. But just like buying a used car, you want to make sure that you’re not getting stuck with a lemon.

If you are considering purchasing a used RV, keep the following things in mind:

Your RV needs

When it comes to buying a used RV one of the first things that you need to consider is exactly the same as if you’re buying a new RV—what your needs are. There are plenty of things to consider in this area when buying an RV including some of the following:

The type of RV

Before you can really start looking, you need to know what type of RV you want. One of the first things to ask yourself is if you have a vehicle that can pull an RV or if you want to get a motorhome that you can drive.

If you want to drive it then you want a Class A, Class B or Class C RV. You can learn a little more about these options here.  However, if you want something that you can pull, then you are looking for a travel trailer, fifth wheel, toy hauler, or popup.

With so many options it’s important that you know what you want. Some things that can sway your decision on what type of RV to get include things like:


  • If you have a vehicle to tow an RV.
  • What your budget is
  • How many people you want to sleep in the RV
  • What you want to bring along with you

You should go walk through a few models to see what RV type is the right fit for you.

How many people are going to travel with you

Another thing that you need to think carefully about is how many people you plan on traveling with. You want to make sure that you are finding a used RV that has plenty of room. Think about how many people will be sleeping in the RV. Consider if there will be enough room for everyone to sit and move about in the main living space.

All the extras

You’re also going to want to think about what types of extras you want available to you. This could be that you want a washer and dryer unit in your RV, would love to have a residential-sized refrigerator or want the option of an oven along with your cooktop like that offered in the Thor Windsport.



Your budget

Once you know what you’re looking for in a used RV, you need to determine what your budget is. This is going to help you weigh what you really need with what you can afford. Just like when buying a car or a house, it’s important that you be realistic about your budget. To get the most enjoyment out of your RV, you want to choose something that you can comfortably afford so you still have the budget to take your RV on the road and make the most out of your trips.

There is a wide range of prices on used RVs depending on things like age, type of RV, and the condition. If you are interested in finding out what type of RV you can get for your budget, Sky River RV can help you discover your best options.


If you can look at it first

There are a lot of things that you can buy sight unseen in the world today, but a used RV should not be one of them. You really want to have time to look at the RV. It’s just like looking at used cars and buying a house that someone has lived in. You want to see how well it has been maintained. Look for things like leaks, mechanical issues, mold, rips, cracks, dents, rust, and the list goes on and on.

Viewing pictures online can give you a good indication of what you are going to see in person, but you still want to physically see the RV or at least have someone that you know and trust go to see it and possibly give you a video tour. There are some things that pictures can’t tell you, like any smells that might be in the RV.

Look thoroughly for signs of mold, water damage, any repairs that have been made and not mentioned, along with checking any seals. Look in the hard to get to places like under cabinets.

Check the cost of insurance

Before deciding which RV to buy, you should contact your insurance company and find out how much the insurance is going to cost you. If you are between several different types of RVs, find out insurance pricing and options on each of them to see if one makes more sense than the others.

The reputation of the seller

You want to know that you are buying from a reputable seller. If you are working with a dealership then take your time to look at their reviews. You can also ask other RVers that you know if they have any recommendations. When you are buying from an individual seller, you won’t really have a way to do this. So, in this case, you’re going to want to be even that much more thorough in checking every inch of the RV before you buy it. It can also be helpful to have a mechanic look at it before you buy it to catch any unwanted surprises.

Finding your used RV

Buying a used RV is a great way to join the community of RVers while keeping your budget down. Don’t think that buying a used RV means that you are getting something that’s not as nice. There are plenty of used RVs that have been well taken care of and are ready for you and your family, like this 2018 Keystone Cougar:

If you’re ready to get started in searching for your used RV,  contact Sky River RV today.

PASO ROBLES  | 805.226.9292
2525 Theatre Drive
Paso Robles, CA 93446

In Beautiful Wine Country, a short drive from Bakersfield and Fresno.

PISMO BEACH | 805.779.7700
444 So. Dolliver
Pismo Beach, CA 93449

With all of its RV parks and famous Sand Dunes and Beaches.

ATASCADERO | 805.462.2164
1200 El Camino Real
Atascadero, CA 93422

Halfway point between Los Angeles and San Francisco and right off the 101.

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