Seriously, if you were shopping for an RV to purchase today and we had only five minutes to help you save the most money, we’d offer the following two tips first.
1.) Don’t buy a 2021 model year.
As you may remember, 2020 was a bit of an odd year –in all sorts of ways. Aside from the fact the entire world was knocked off its axis, the RV industry suffered its own unique problems. Typically, the next year’s models are designed in the first half (January through June) of the previous year. 2021 models, for instance, would normally have been designed and engineered in the first half of 2020 in anticipation of a launch to coincide with the fall RV Shows.
But the first half of 2020 didn’t happen for many people and many companies. Quarantines, global pandemic, social-distancing, shut-downs –these are the four main buzz words that sum up the decade known as 2020.
Almost every manufacturer spent large portions of 2020 with their design teams and engineers isolated at home. At some point a battlefield decision was made that 2021 models would largely have to be warmed-over 2020 models.
We understand the decision and are not implying anything underhanded is at work here. Desperate times call for desperate measures and all that. But that doesn’t mean you’re obligated to pay a premium for a 2021 when the 2020 is basically the same thing.
While the manufacturers were struggling with design team issues, they were also happily gifted with a bull market run on RVs –the likes of which the industry had never seen.
After a few months of being cooped up at home, a dawning realization hit everyone at once that the RV lifestyle was a safe activity, being founded on the idea of social distancing before social distancing was even a thing. RV sales exploded and manufacturers, anticipating a very bad year, suddenly found themselves building as fast and furious as they could. The priority on new designs for 2021 took a further slide as factories assumed an all-hands-on-deck mentality in an effort to keep up with demand for anything they could shove out the door.
2.) Consider an extended warranty from an independent wholesaler.
In other words, don’t buy an extended warranty from your dealer. Trust us, they’ll offer it, too. Many RV dealers make more money on the extended warranty they tack on at the last minute than they do on the sale of the RV itself.
Despite that comment, we’re actually fans of extended warranties on RVs –at least the ones selling north of $40,000. For reasons we don’t understand, almost every RV manufacturer provides a crummy factory warranty –typically one year or 24,000 miles.
If you heeded our advice about avoiding the 2021 models (warmed-over 2020s), then chances are you’re now looking at the nearly identical –and now discounted 2020 models. Remember, though, many 2020 models were built under extreme conditions –high demand combined with staff shortages. The initial owner feedback on the 2020 models is just starting to trickle in but we’re definitely seeing an uptick in fit and finish complaints and sloppy workmanship.
While the savings on a 2020 can be significant, that may soon lose its luster if your new RV is rife with problems. We propose countering that with an extended warranty. If you save $2,500 on a 2020 versus a 2021, and then spend $800 on a 3-year bumper-to-bumper warranty, not only have you saved $1,700, but you’ve also bought yourself three years of peace of mind.
While it may seem simpler to purchase this directly from your dealer when he brings it up, too many dealers mark-up the extended warranties so much that many states now limit their profit margin to 100% when it comes to extended RV warranty policies. And chances are they’re just purchasing the warranty from an independent RV insurer like WholesaleWarranties.com, slapping on 100% profit (or more) and passing it on to you.
Much better to purchase directly from someone like WholesaleWarranties.com and slip the middle man’s profit back in to your own pocket. We’ve worked with WholesaleWarranties.com for years. In fact, when we wrote our Extended RV Warranty Buying Guide we badgered them with questions for months and they were always helpful and patient. Unlike your dealer’s extended warranty, that is a one-size-fits-all package, WholesaleWarranties.com has a wide range of underwriters to choose from and can design a policy that meets your needs or budget. Lastly, mention “RVReviews.net” when you call them for a free quote and they’ll provide an additional discount.
In more than fifteen years of reviewing RVs we’ve shilled for another company only once –and that has been WholesaleWarranties.com. In five years of recommending them to our readers, we still have not received a single complaint. In our opinion they’ve earned our recommendation.
And that completes our five-minute consultation. See, that wasn’t so bad, was it?
As always, check your tire pressures before hitting the road. It costs you nothing and can be done in mere minutes. Not only will it improve your MPG, it may save your life.
The RVReviews.net Team