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Old 05-01-2015, 05:38 AM   #1
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Buying an older model

We will be retiring within a year and it is our hope to sell out and buy an older model Class A. We don't want to spend our retirement in our living room chairs watching TV, but rather traveling and seeing this beautiful country.

For those of us that are just learning about Class A's and the lifestyle, what do you all think about older models (approx. 2000) and what makes or models hold up the best.

Would love to hear your comments.

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Old 05-01-2015, 05:59 AM   #2
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Location: Conway, SC
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Look at quality built class A's. Not knowing what price range, I'd say Foretravel, Newmar, Monaco, some Tiffin's, etc. But it really doesn't matter the name if you can't get the maint. records. The finest class A could be crap if not taken care of. In 2010 I finally settled on a Newmar Dutch Star diesel, and we've been fulltiming ever since. But we've had our glitches....a bad fuel pump, ball joints, front wheel bearing, needed to replace the fridge. But all in all I wouldn't change a thing. If retirement is less than a year away you've got work to do researching what type you want, gas or diesel, then floor plans, then manufacturer. If you do your due diligence and not jump at the first one you see, you'll do fine. There's a boat load of fine used one's out there, you just have to find the one for you. One other thing to consider, if the coach is less than 15yrs. old you might want to get an extended warranty for peace of mind. Some like them, others not. But I got one and it's more than paid for itself, and I have 2yrs. left on it. Good luck. I'm sure others will be along with other ideas.

2000 Dutch Star Pusher
2009 Saturn Vue Towed
Full timed for 6yrs.
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Old 05-01-2015, 06:04 AM   #3
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Location: Toledo, OH
Posts: 1,585
How much time do you have.

Buying an older unit is like buying an older house , if you need to hire someone to do almost everything, then you probably shouldn't be messing around with an older unit, as you'll probably go broke.

Experience is a BIG PLUS, knowing what to look for, knowing your limits, both skill wise and financial wise.

With that said, you can find good deals but you must be patient and ready to jump when one shows up.

Spring is the worst time to buy. Fall early winter is the best time to buy. Start your search locally, but also look farther out, If you find something far away, make sure you figure in air fare or whatever it costs to travel. AND - ALWAYS be prepared to walk away and forfeit your deposit.

Your buying two items. A house and a truck. The systems on these can range from very simple to very complicated.

My Mirada is a very simple, low end, MH. Its on a good chassis (Ford F53) with good transmission and engine track records.

Something like a Bounder or a Holiday Rambler would be a more middle of the road MH, more systems, better quality, but can also be had on the Ford F53.

Then you can go the high end, Diesel, Lot of systems (inverters, batteries, auto start generators, etc) You'll find these on the high end chassis, freight liner, etc.

My recommendation;

You must be mechanically inclined, start on the low end, get some experience, learn what you want and how it will fit into your lifestyle

Then move up and fine tune what you look for.

We started out with a 22 year old 21 ft Toyota Dolphin Class C. We sold it a year ago for $1000 more than we paid for it, then last fall found the Mirada.

System wise, our Mirada is very simple and almost identical to the systems in our Ole Toyhouse, but the Mirada has a lot more room and more comfortable.
2001 Coachmen Mirada (Ford F53 6.8L V10) - Toad 2003 Saturn Vue.
It won't do MACH 2, but I can get a sandwich and take a pee.
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Old 05-01-2015, 06:53 AM   #4
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Location: Manassas, VA
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As of this date there are 372 Class A motor homes for sale on this site. I'm sure that you can find a nice one here if not somewhere else. Go for it!
2006 Four Winds Majestic 23A
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Old 05-01-2015, 08:12 AM   #5
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Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Columbus, MS
Posts: 19,251
I would highly recommend the early 2000 Monaco line! We love our 2002 Windsor! The 40PBT floorplan is exactly what we wanted, it has full auto air leveling (no hydraulic jacks), all-steel house frame, 3 slide-outs, 350 ISC Cummins engine, 3000 Allison tranny, rides and drives like a dream!

Just be sure you don't get a model with the trailing arm issue!
Joe & Annette

2002 Monaco Windsor 40PBT, 2013 Honda CRV AWD
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