Seven Insider Tips to Buying a Used Motorhome


used motorhome at emm-bee

Buying a used motorhome makes sense for a lot of people.

There are used motorhomes to suit most budgets and buying second hand means you sometimes  get a level of luxury which you simply wouldn’t be able to afford with a new motorhome.

However, buying a used motorhome also requires a bit of thought and research.

As an experienced motorhome dealer, we thought we’d put our knowledge to good use and put together seven top tips to help anyone on the hunt for a great used motorhome.

Tip 1: Set a Budget

A fairly obvious starting point – and one which applies to more than just buying a used motorhome.

Set your budget and be realistic – what is the absolute maximum you’re willing to spend?

By keeping this figure in mind you can stop yourself getting carried away and spending more than you can afford or are willing to part with for a motorhome.

Go in with a loose budget and it’s easy to end up spending significantly more; go in with a fixed budget and you should be better able to stick to an absolute maximum.

Many websites also let you put in a maximum price when searching for a used motorhome.

This should be your fixed budget to stop you making emotional purchases above budget.

Tip 2: List your priorities 

A few lucky people have limitless budgets and so never need compromise.

For the rest of us, most major purchases will involve some degree of compromise.

With a motorhome, this could be the level of trim, the engine efficiency, the driver aids, the mileage, the aesthetics against performance, the fuel economy or something else.

The key question is; which matters most to you in terms of why you are buying the motorhome?

Having thought about what you really value in a motorhome, make a list in order of priority.

This gives you a more rational basis to cross check whether prospective motorhomes fit the bill.

 Tip 3: Research Prices

You now have your budget and key requirements listed. Now is the time to find what bang you will get for your buck. We live in a great age where it is possible to get any information you can imagine simply by entering a few choice words into Google.

Have a browse around used motorhome websites will give you a feel for what different motorhome models sell for – how does age, mileage and level of trim affect the price of any models you might be interested in?

When you get to a later stage, actually going to view motorhomes, you want to be forearmed with knowledge of what a fair price is for the vehicle you’re viewing.

Tip 4: Read reviews

Similar to research on prices, you can also read reviews of any motorhome make and model. Often simply entering the make and model and the word ‘review’ into Google will surface several links of value – for example reviews from independent publications.

One useful resource is the Practical Motorhomes website – in their reviews section there are filters so you can easily find write-ups for many motorhomes, both new and old.

Tip 5: Narrow the field

By now, based on your budget, wish-list and research, you should naturally have been identifying a few contenders for your future motorhome.

If this list is quite large, whittle it down to a few makes and models.

By narrowing the field this way, you can easily identify dealers who have a selection of suitable vehicles in stock and so avoid wasted trips.

You can always keep the ones purged from this list as a reserve back-up list.

However, don’t narrow the field too much – you don’t want to limit yourself to a single type of vehicle to take for that all-important test drive

Tip 6: Period of ownership

Sadly we can’t predict the future, but we can at least cast a glance in that direction.

Do you want a motorhome for many years, or are you keen to update every two or three years?

This decision can have major implications for your purchase – if you’re planning on keeping the motorhome for decades then you might want to consider a lower mileage model than if you’re going to change in two years.

Similarly if you plan on changing after two or three years you might want to consider how different makes and models depreciate in value.

Let’s say you’re looking at buying a four-year-old motorhome with 16,000 miles on the clock. How does this compare in value to a seven-year-old home with 28,000 on the clock?

Researching the difference gives you a guide to how much the model will depreciate over the years.

Tip 7:  Use only Reputable Dealers for Used Motorhomes

OK, we’re not saying you’re going to definitely get left with a dud if you buy privately but if you’re an inexperienced ‘motorhomer’, trusted dealers who know the market can prove their weight in motorhome cash.

And, of course there’s some hugely useful extras like guarantees with the sale and with the motorhome’s quality.

Remember, reputable dealers have much more to lose by selling someone a dodgy motorhome.

Talking about reputable dealers segues nicely into a bit about us. May we wish you luck with your search for a used motorhome….

 About Emm-Bee Motorhome Dealers

Emm-Bee is a leading UK family-run motorhome dealership based in Bury, Greater Manchester.

As well as stocking the latest models from leading makes such as Burstner, Chausson, Bailey and Laika, we also have an unrivalled stock of used motorhomes for sale.

We pride ourselves on customer satisfaction and offering unmatched levels of service – we have been in business for 25 years and have flourished on word-of-mouth recommendations.

Please have a look round the site to check our range of used motorhomes and do get in touch with any queries, or just to pick our brains.


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