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Old 03-08-2010, 12:58 PM   #11
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Spokane, WA/Brenda, AZ
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Originally Posted by ronandkathy87
We can not afford a high end full timer unit
Actually, you can if you're buying used. The problem will come in finding high-end units in the shorter length you want.

Hitchhiker (NuWa), Excel (Peterson Ind.), Arctic Fox (Northwood Mfg.), and Carriage are all high-end manufacturers that make shorter fifth wheels. These manufacturers are all still in business, too.

King of the Road, Teton, and Travel Supreme are also among the high-end fifth wheel, although these manufacturers have gone out of business...not really a big deal for a used purchase since manufacturer's warranties are generally not more than one year. The problem with these three manufacturers is finding a short enough rig that is capable of being pulled by a 3/4-ton truck.

2007 Excel Classic 30RKE
2009 Eagle Cap 950 Camper
2007 Dodge Ram 3500
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Old 04-16-2010, 01:04 PM   #12
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We have owned five RVs in our lifetime. Each of them was purchased with specific configurations to match whatever lifestyle we were following. When the children were little we had bunkhouse models, when they all left home we had units with bigger bedrooms and living rooms.

We have never purchased a new RV. In our experience it seems like lots of people purchase an RV and do not use it as much as they thought they would. Many of these units end up on the used market in great condition.

We just purchased a 40' 5th wheel and we will be full-time in the unit. It is four years old, but I doubt it has more than 1000 miles on it. The carpet and upholstery look brand new. No one has ever cooked on the stove. It still smells new. The only difference between our 5th wheel and the new models is that new RVs often come with flat panel TVs. We addressed that issue by installing our new flat panel TV in the place of the older model.

We had an RV shop go completely through the unit, replacing any pipes, hoses or other things that were worn simply because they were four years old. We put a larger water pump into the unit and new batteries. We bought a 36 month warranty for $2000. Even with all these expenses as well as taxes and insurance we paid less than 50% of the cost of a new RV.

My advice is to shop the used RV market. There are great buys out there.

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Old 04-16-2010, 01:13 PM   #13
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We just purchased an RV for the purpose of living in it full-time. It is our 5th RV purchase. We made a list of the things we had to have to be content such as vented A/C and furnace, separate living room and bedroom, washer/dryer, computer desk etc.

Then we established a budget, in the same range as your budget. Then we shopped the used market.

In our experience many people seem to purchase RVs and then do not use them in the way the thought they would. Many of these units find their way to the used market with little wear.

Our "new" fiver is four years old, but looks, feels and smells brand new. No one has even cooked on the stove or done a batch of laundry in the washer. Because it was four years old we had an RV shop go completely through the unit replacing anything that could be damaged by mere age such as hoses and pipes. We put in a new converter box, bought new batteries and a 36 month warranty for $2000. With all of this we paid less than $25,000 for our new home, and that was more than 50% less of the selling price of a comparable fiver new.

It can be discouraging shopping the used market because many RVs have been used hard and should probably just be junked. There are, however, the occasional jewels out there. I would shop until I found one. We looked seriously for about two weeks, and found four we could have purchased, with our unit being the best.
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Old 06-20-2010, 07:00 PM   #14
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Old 03-12-2016, 05:00 AM   #15
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Great info! Thanks for sharing!

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