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Motorhome RV Cost


How Much Does a Motorhome RV Cost?

 
low costCamper Vans: $40,000-$125,000+average costClass C Motorhomes: $50,000-$140,000high costClass A Motorhomes: $50,000-$800,000+
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Motorhomes are the motorized version of a recreational vehicle, and the most widely known type of RV. The driver typically sits in a pilot's seat, and the living area might vary from basic eating/sleeping combinations to a full bedroom, living room, kitchen and bath, plus slide-out additions that expand the living space when parked.

There are three categories -- Class A motorhomes are the largest (21'-40' long) and typically the most luxurious; Class Bs are the smallest (16'-26'); and Class C are mid-sized (20'-32)' and typically have a bed over the driver's cab.

Typical costs:

  • Prices start at $50,000-$100,000 for a basic Class A motorhome, which resembles a bus or semi-truck. Upgraded models can cost $200,000-$500,000 with features such as a slide-out, a rear camera to make backing up easier or a plush decor. Customized Class As can be $500,000-$800,000 with options such as multiple hard-sided slideouts, an entertainment center and a gas fireplace. Diesel engines are more expensive than gas-powered engines, and diesel-pushers (with the engine in back) cost more than front-engine motorhomes.
  • Camper Vans, also known as Class B motorhomes, cost $40,000-$80,000 for a standard model, and $90,000-$125,000 or more for luxurious versions. They look like a standard van and are typically15'-26' long.
  • Sometimes called mini-motorhomes or mini-RVs, Class C motorhomes start at $50,000-$80,000 depending on size (typically 16'-26') and options. More luxurious Class Cs (up to 36' feet long, on a heavy-duty van or truck chassis) can cost $85,000-$140,000, with features such as a larger bathroom, full-sized appliances or a home theater system.
  • Motorhomes start depreciating[1] as soon as they leave the dealership, so a well-maintained motorhome that's a few years old can be 20% to 30% below its original purchase price.
What should be included:
  • At a minimum, a motorhome contains bed(s), a table, a food preparation area and storage space. Smaller versions may convert a dining table and benches into a bed; larger motorhomes may also have a separate bedroom with a queen- or king-size bed.
Additional costs:
  • Class As average about 8-10 miles per gallon, with a typical fuel tank holding 100-150 gallons. At $2.50-$4 a gallon, a fill-up could cost $250-$600 and last 800-1,500 miles. Class B Camper Vans are similar to a standard family van, getting 10-25 mpg depending on make and model, engine size, vehicle weight, city or highway miles and speed driven. Class C motorhomes average 10 mpg with fuel tanks holding 25-55 gallons; at $2.50-$4 a gallon a fill-up could cost $60-$220 and last for 250-550 miles.
  • Campground or RV park fees cost about $10-$50 a night per vehicle, depending on the desirability of the location, whether the site provides utility hookups (electric, sewer and water), or other amenities.
  • Before buying an RV, shop around for RV insurance rates; premium costs vary considerably. Vehicle registration fees vary by state, but typically average $50-$400 a year.
  • Items like tires, brakes and filters will wear out in direct proportion to the mileage covered. Some Class A motorhome owners recommend having a maintenance/repair fund of $3,000-$5,000 a year, especially if living in the motorhome full time.
  • Renting an RV storage space can run $20-$100 a month outdoors and $45-$450 a month indoors. Renting a Class A motorhome costs $1,400-$3,500 for a 7-day, 700-mile trip; a Class C typically rents for $1,000-$2,500 for seven nights and up to 700 miles.
Shopping for a motorhome rv:
  • RV shows[2] offer many makes and models in one place; admission can be free or $5-$10.
  • Most dealer prices are negotiable. At message boards hosted by Woodall's[3] and MotorHome Magazine, RV buyers and owners describe buying a new Class A motorhome for 25% or more below the manufacturer's suggested retail price.
  • Unlike new car dealers, RV dealers are not required to post the MSRP on the vehicle's window. And the MSRP on identical make and model RVs can vary significantly depending on floor plan and features like flooring, cabinetry, light fixtures, etc. RV dealer markup can be 10%-70% over wholesale costs, according to video tips[4] from Charles Davis of RVFinancing.com. RV Magazine explains how to negotiate and finance[5] an RV purchase.
  • For used motorhomes, NadaGuides.com provides a tool to estimate prices[6] and Changingears.com explains how to determine a fair market price[7] with the Nada Guides as a starting point. Consignment seller PPL Motor Homes posts its actual RV selling prices[8] .
  • Changingears.com provides checklists for inspecting a motorhome[9] before buying it, and for road testing a motorhome[10] . Roaming Times posts reviews[11] of specific models.
  • Find local dealers through the National Recreational Vehicle Dealers Association[12] or GoRVing.com[13] .
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External Resources:
  1.  www.rversonline.org/ArtNewUsedRV.html
  2.  www.gorving.com/where-to-find/rv-shows
  3.  forums.woodalls.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/thread/tid/23571442/srt/pa/pging/1/page/1.cfm
  4.  www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEFv71FzYIg
  5.  www.rvmagonline.com/features/0808rv-rv-buying-tips/negotiating.html
  6.  www.nadaguides.com/RVs
  7.  changingears.com/rv-art-determining-rv-fmv.shtml
  8.  www.pplmotorhomes.com/sold/soldmenu.htm
  9.  changingears.com/rv-checklist-inspection.shtml
  10.  changingears.com/rv-checklist-road-test-motor-home.shtml?sec-checklist
  11.  www.roamingtimes.com/consumer/index.aspx
  12.  www.rvda.org/AM/Template.cfm?Section=Dealer_Info&template=/DealerSearch/Custom/dealer_s...
  13.  www.gorving.com/where-to-find/dealers
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