Selling Your Motorhome For The Best Price

This post is all about how to achieve the best possible price when selling your used motorhome. Because selling a motorhome is about as easy as selling a second-hand mattress. No one would willingly buy, a second-hand mattress unless they could not afford a new one and likewise, price is the only reason anyone buys a second-hand motorhome.

I mean, you are literally selling a used mattress, and a used couch and a used toilet too! I know right? It’s a wonder any of these things get sold at all!

 When you have a motorhome on one hand and a potential buyer on the other, the thing that is going to determine how much that buyer is willing to pay is their level of desire. The more someone desires your particular motorhome, the more they are going to be willing to pay for it. Make sense?

So getting the best possible price for your motorhome is all about making your motorhome more desirable to other people and the ways you can do that are:

  1. Fabulous images
  2. Great description
  3. Compelling price

Great Images

I am a professional photographer and videographer and marketing is in my job description. I have also owned 6 motorhomes and sold them all for the best possible price. So when I say you need two things to take great images you can trust me.

  1. A completely empty, as near as new looking van as possible.
  2. A wide-angle lens or camera with plenty of light or a smartphone and a very neat trick I will share with you in a moment.

Empty Your Van

Let’s talk about emptying the van first. The less people focus on you and what you have been doing in your used RV, the better. I know you think it’s fine to leave all your gear in place until someone drags you bodily out of your beloved van waving a cheque but let’s be real. If you still have your Akubra hats and clothes and bedding and pots and pans and washing liquid and all the detritus of your life in your van, you are not serious about selling. Rather than list the van for a pie-in-the-sky price, consider keeping the van a while longer - travel and have fun and ONLY when you are ready to empty everything out should you attempt to start photographing your van.

Scrub a Rub Dub

Now your van is EMPTY, you must CLEAN it. You need to SCRUB every nook and cranny until the last whiff of your beloved puppy dogs and deep-fried flathead from last Saturday is gone, gone, gone. You need to polish off the fingerprints. Get rid of the red dust and sand and spray and wipe until it looks like you only visited the motorhome on Tuesdays (and only then to sit tentatively on the edge of the settee before vacating the vehicle). A clean vehicle is worth several thousand dollars more than a dirty one so it will certainly be worth your while to do a great job.

(People walking into the motorhome smiling and laughing - they give feedback - ‘wow, did you ever even use this motorhome. Paddy shrugs and grins. The Then to camera THUMBS UP.)

The Right Camera For The Job

Photographing a motorhome generally requires an ultra wide angle lens and most people don’t have one of these but I have a trick to get you the results you need with any smartphone. Simply, turn your phone on its long edge and select ‘Panorama’. Now pan your camera to capture the interior - making sure your dogs are not in the shot of course!

A Great Description

The job of your motorhome description is to get you calls from people who want the specific features your motorhome offers while dissuading time-wasters from annoying you on the phone. This means telling people quite a bit about your motorhome and answering the five top questions all buyers want to know.

The Basics

Price, make, model, mileage and all of the standard features.

What Is Wrong With It?

No second-hand motorhome is perfect. Get an inspection (AKA trade-in price) from any RV dealer and then a written quote to fix any faults the van might find. When you have a price to rectify, this helps with negotiation with buyers. It also says, you have nothing to hide when you present the issues up-front and removes the anxiety buyers feel when facing the unknown.

The Mechanicals

Every buyer wonders how long the mechanics will last before they have to start spending money and the less confident they are, the bigger the discount they will seek. Detailed service records, go a long way to assuaging potential buyer concerns about the mechanical condition of your RV and make your motorhome much more desirable. If you do not have a service history, consider getting an inexpensive rego safety inspection. The more detailed your records, the better.

A Compelling Price

Listing your motorhome with a compelling price from the get-go is how you get lots of people interested and competing for the opportunity to buy. And by ‘compelling’ I don’t mean compelling to you. I mean compelling to someone looking to buy.

That line on the movie The Castle says it all. ‘Tell him he’s dreaming’.

The issue with inflating your price is that serious buyers may not bother calling so what you end up with is low-ballers and scammers wasting your time and energy.

There is so much choice out there for buyers. Why would someone pay $100k for a 2004 - 2008 model van when for just $20 - $40k more, they can have a new one?

Oh, but my van has more features more space, more…. shhhh. Remember, it’s a used mattress and an old couch so if you want to sell it in 2019, you need to price it to the market.

Share and Advertise

Once you have your images and description complete, it’s time to package these elements together to make it easy for you to share them, and for potential buyers to grow confident about your motorhome.

Free Listings

If you want to dip a toe in the water and check your pricing, a free listing on Facebook Market place is a great place to start.

The next place you might consider listing is on Gumtree. If your motorhome is well priced, it will certainly stand out against the dreamers who have had their vans listed for months or even years at silly prices.

Premium / Paid Listings

The number #1 place to sell a motorhome in Australia is probably CaravanCampingSales.com.au but Facebook recently introduced the ability to promote your market place listing and there are some premium options on Gumtree too. In QLD, www.tradervs.com.au seems to have a good toe-hold and www.firstnetrader.com.au gets a few too. Finally, let’s not forget CMCA Members Market so a plethora of options. Have you had success selling your motorhome? Add your tips below!

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About the author

Paddy McCann

Over the years, I’ve owned six motorhomes, two Caravans and three campervans so you could say I am a bit of an RV enthusiast. Chat with you soon in the comments area below. PaddyMac


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