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Old 06-23-2016, 10:16 AM   #1
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Talking The best Motor homes - here they are!

A least once a week it seems someone wants to know what brand of MH they should purchase, which one has the best quality, fewest repairs etc. Of course they will receive many replies with anecdotal opinions on various coaches. The advice they get is pretty much worth what they paid for it.

Itís surprising that more people are not aware of the ďRC Consumer Group.Ē For those of us who are, we should probably spread the word a little more. It is a great organization that is non-profit, meaning they accept no advertising that could influence their ratings. The $139 initial cost is well worth it. Sounds like a lot, but could save you thousands. They provide ratings based on factory tours, owner surveys [I've already completed 1 for my MH], inspections of HMs by experts, a quality rating & owner satisfaction, and engineering reports to determine handling and safety. Once youíve joined, future rating guides are much cheaper, about $48. There are good coaches and a lot of really bad coaches out there Finding a good one involves more than a dealership walk-thru.

Hereís a recommendation:
When considering a MH donít even begin looking until youíve selected the manufacturer(s) based on the RVCG ratings. Then, check the rating of the specific unit (floor plan) you like. Decisions become a lot easier.

Before you even start shopping, join the RVCG and download the new & used ratings for MHs. When we bought our MH we found only 2 manufacturers that had the quality and handling/safety ratings we needed. We have purchased 2 TTs and a MH using these ratings & believe that the RVCG was one of the best investments we made.

Hereís the web site.
https://www.rv.org/index.html

If nothing more, go read their history, itís an eye opener.
https://www.rv.org/about.htm

Happy camping.

Dave
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Old 06-23-2016, 10:48 AM   #2
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I'm sure this is great advice in general.

I'm also a firm believer that when buying used that the market tends to value a MH about where it needs to be. Combine that with a lot of research and maybe even an inspection and you have a pretty good chance of being happy with your purchase.
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Old 06-23-2016, 11:16 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Caswelld View Post
A least once a week it seems someone wants to know what brand of MH they should purchase, which one has the best quality, fewest repairs etc. Of course they will receive many replies with anecdotal opinions on various coaches. The advice they get is pretty much worth what they paid for it.

Itís surprising that more people are not aware of the ďRC Consumer Group.Ē For those of us who are, we should probably spread the word a little more. It is a great organization that is non-profit, meaning they accept no advertising that could influence their ratings. The $139 initial cost is well worth it. Sounds like a lot, but could save you thousands. They provide ratings based on factory tours, owner surveys [I've already completed 1 for my MH], inspections of HMs by experts, a quality rating & owner satisfaction, and engineering reports to determine handling and safety. Once youíve joined, future rating guides are much cheaper, about $48. There are good coaches and a lot of really bad coaches out there Finding a good one involves more than a dealership walk-thru.

Hereís a recommendation:
When considering a MH donít even begin looking until youíve selected the manufacturer(s) based on the RVCG ratings. Then, check the rating of the specific unit (floor plan) you like. Decisions become a lot easier.

Before you even start shopping, join the RVCG and download the new & used ratings for MHs. When we bought our MH we found only 2 manufacturers that had the quality and handling/safety ratings we needed. We have purchased 2 TTs and a MH using these ratings & believe that the RVCG was one of the best investments we made.

Hereís the web site.
https://www.rv.org/index.html

If nothing more, go read their history, itís an eye opener.
https://www.rv.org/about.htm

Happy camping.

Dave
The information that they provide for the fee you pay is pretty much anecdotal as well. I purchased this service when I was researching my last purchase and found that a great deal of it based on formulas and not on any inspection of their own. I found that looking at a lot and I do mean a lot of motorhomes and keeping notes of what I found was a whole lot better than their service. For example they cannot rate a floor plan which YOU may or may not like. Only YOU can view workmanship. Only YOU can feel how one motorhome drives and rides compared to another.

And it is fun looking and hunting!
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Old 06-23-2016, 11:53 AM   #4
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"The information that they provide for the fee you pay is pretty much anecdotal as well."

Actually, none of it is anecdotal. You may have bought the product but you might go back & read how the ratings are developed.

Formulas are used in some cases (such as will the tail wag the dog), but a buyer is unlikely to know how the side walls are made, tour all the factories, or conduct a survey of hundreds of consumers.
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Old 06-23-2016, 12:03 PM   #5
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I used it when shopping for our Fifth Wheel & again for the MH.
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Old 06-23-2016, 01:11 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Caswelld View Post
"The information that they provide for the fee you pay is pretty much anecdotal as well."

Actually, none of it is anecdotal. You may have bought the product but you might go back & read how the ratings are developed.

Formulas are used in some cases (such as will the tail wag the dog), but a buyer is unlikely to know how the side walls are made, tour all the factories, or conduct a survey of hundreds of consumers.
I doubt that they tour all the factories even once a year or stay on top of all the improvements a manufacturer will make to his production line in the course of a year. They say that a certain model can be lived in "fulltime" or not which is totally anecdotal! Nor do they tell you whether a dealer can be trusted. I'm just saying, don't make your final decision on just on this service - not by a long shot.
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Old 06-23-2016, 01:38 PM   #7
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Sorry, not sure were using the same vocabulary.

This is what I meant by anecdotal:
ADJECTIVE (Of an account) not necessarily true or reliable, because it is based on personal accounts rather than facts or research.

So here is an excerpt from the RVCG web site on How they rate RVs.

"Reliability is generated from a database that consists of input from consumer satisfaction surveys and staff evaluations. The results are further broken down so that the end score reflects 1/3 input from the evaluations and 2/3 from the satisfaction surveys. The results from the satisfaction surveys are calculated using equally the summary of averages from both brand and manufacturer."

Doesn't sound anecdotal to me.

All I was trying to do is share with consumers a place where honest unbiased ratings of TTs and MHs can be found. I just don't see a down side to this. Nothing but good has come from the RVCG.

Most of us come to IRV2 to learn & I have learned a lot from my fellow RV owners. I for one, and the thousands of RV enthusiasts who have used the RVCG ratings think it is a useful tool in the RV selection process.

Facts & research seldom jade a good choice. Their ratings are NOT about floor plans or gas vs diesel, they are about....Does this manufacturer make walls that delaminate? Is the wheelbase adequate for safe operation? Would owners buy it again? Not all MHs are equal.
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Old 06-23-2016, 01:53 PM   #8
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The information that they provide for the fee you pay is pretty much anecdotal as well. I purchased this service when I was researching my last purchase and found that a great deal of it based on formulas and not on any inspection of their own. I found that looking at a lot and I do mean a lot of motorhomes and keeping notes of what I found was a whole lot better than their service. For example they cannot rate a floor plan which YOU may or may not like. Only YOU can view workmanship. Only YOU can feel how one motorhome drives and rides compared to another.

And it is fun looking and hunting!
I totally agree, nobody knows what is more important to you than YOU. Things like this may be good but they also may jade some brands you would have considered, and you don't even give them a chance. Nothing beats going out and doing your own research(which includes reading others opinions), and buying whatever fits your needs the best both in function and quality. We looked for over two years, new/used, gas/diesel, MH/5th wheel ect. When we found what we wanted it was obvious to us and it made our decision so much easier, as we found the quality we wanted in a floorplan we loved.

Quality, whether being the actual construction of the RV, floorplan, propulsion, amenities, customer service, price ect, is in the mind of the beholder. What is important to one person may have little importance to another. And looking for one is half the fun of buying one.
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Old 06-23-2016, 02:12 PM   #9
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According to the reports I've read the rating services may never even look at the units they're rating. They get the info from the literature and go from that.
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Old 06-23-2016, 02:24 PM   #10
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Sorry, not sure were using the same vocabulary.

This is what I meant by anecdotal:
ADJECTIVE (Of an account) not necessarily true or reliable, because it is based on personal accounts rather than facts or research.

So here is an excerpt from the RVCG web site on How they rate RVs.

"Reliability is generated from a database that consists of input from consumer satisfaction surveys and staff evaluations. The results are further broken down so that the end score reflects 1/3 input from the evaluations and 2/3 from the satisfaction surveys. The results from the satisfaction surveys are calculated using equally the summary of averages from both brand and manufacturer."

Doesn't sound anecdotal to me.

All I was trying to do is share with consumers a place where honest unbiased ratings of TTs and MHs can be found. I just don't see a down side to this. Nothing but good has come from the RVCG.

Most of us come to IRV2 to learn & I have learned a lot from my fellow RV owners. I for one, and the thousands of RV enthusiasts who have used the RVCG ratings think it is a useful tool in the RV selection process.

Facts & research seldom jade a good choice.
I did not say it was not "a useful tool". After all, that is why I purchased it. However, they "ranked" and "rated" on what they claim were "facts" when they had never set foot inside one. They set themselves up as authorities when their expertise is nebulous. I'm saying that one could make a decision that they could come to regret by relying just on their so called "expertise".

Do you understand me now?
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Old 06-23-2016, 02:39 PM   #11
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Read you loud and clear....BUT, you still haven't read how they actually come up with ratings.

Here's a quotation from the RVCG web site:

"These are the primary ratings produced by RV Consumer Group: Reliability / Highway Control / Value / Star Award. All ratings are on a 1 to 100 scale but each one is established by totally different criteria. We analyze RV brands and manufacturers in the following way: Consumer surveys. By staff evaluations. We visit dealer lots, attend RV shows, and make unannounced visits to RV factories. Consumer complaints. We review the type of complaint against a brand and compare it to the input received through surveys and staff evaluations."

Look, I have NO vested interest in the RVCG, so go argue with them, not me. I'm just a guy who thinks it is the best way to weed out a bunch of lousy RVs and there are many out there.

Not everyone knows this service exists.
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Old 06-23-2016, 03:00 PM   #12
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Talking

Ya step into this beauty and fall in love with the curtains. Your wife loves the bathroom. Before you write the check, wouldn't you like to know what other owners thought of it?
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Old 06-23-2016, 04:15 PM   #13
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Read you loud and clear....BUT, you still haven't read how they actually come up with ratings.

Here's a quotation from the RVCG web site:

"These are the primary ratings produced by RV Consumer Group: Reliability / Highway Control / Value / Star Award. All ratings are on a 1 to 100 scale but each one is established by totally different criteria. We analyze RV brands and manufacturers in the following way: Consumer surveys. By staff evaluations. We visit dealer lots, attend RV shows, and make unannounced visits to RV factories. Consumer complaints. We review the type of complaint against a brand and compare it to the input received through surveys and staff evaluations."

Look, I have NO vested interest in the RVCG, so go argue with them, not me. I'm just a guy who thinks it is the best way to weed out a bunch of lousy RVs and there are many out there.

Not everyone knows this service exists.
Yes, I did read it. And I went further and dug into who they are, how many of them they are. They are not a big organization and really no more than a family. They gather a fraction of actual owners for their consumer evaluations. I was in marketing and know that one or two dozen does not a survey make. Their data consists more of formulaic extrapolations than actual measurements. I am saying that they set themselves up as experts on a huge range ofproducts that such a few staff members cannot possibly be "expert" on. Customer satisfactions are extrapolated to be a "rating" of a manufacturer when the dealer experience is NOT inputted and everyone knows that the dealer experience can weigh as heavily on the overall experience of the product when talking motorhomes or even automobiles for that matter.

Yes, there is a huge demand from newbie potential buyers of RVs and this company markets themselves as so called experts of items they have never laid a finger on and, in my opinion, take advantage of that market. So I am calling out to all potential RVers, CAVEAT EMPTOR! Do not put too much credence in what they offer! Do your own due diligence! 'Nuf said?
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Old 06-23-2016, 04:23 PM   #14
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Ya step into this beauty and fall in love with the curtains. Your wife loves the bathroom. Before you write the check, wouldn't you like to know what other owners thought of it?
If I really was considering that then I probably wouldn't have the mindset or care what others owners thought. And I probably shouldn't even be considering the purchase of a MH.
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