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Old 05-16-2018, 07:22 AM   #1
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Making the Purchase and Taking Delivery

This is kind of a two part question.

Part 1 - how do you purchase an RV? (A) like an automobile, you sign a check and you are handed the keys or (B) like a home, you sign a contract to purchase contingent upon...securing financing from the bank, passing home inspection, termite inspection, etc...etc...

Part 2 - taking delivery (after the purchase). I've read on this forum that you should allow days??? to take delivery, to do the PDI ???? How can you spend days at the dealer looking over the trailer...how does this work. Also, is the purchase contingent on this "inspection"? Can I refuse to take delivery at this point? Can I back out of the purchase if I'm not happy? Can I hire a professional to do the PDI inspection like a home inspection?

Ok, maybe there are more than just two questions in there.
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Old 05-16-2018, 09:37 AM   #2
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I've bought 3 RV's so far.
1st one we made a deal, gave a small deposit, they setup the financing. When the TT was ready to pickup we singed the papers. It's not the way I'd do things now.
2nd one we traded in and again signed the papers at PDI.
3rd one was bought sight unseen over the phone. No deposit. I secured financing, but the dealer actually beat that rate slightly. Dealer did the walk thru for PDI, left us to look it over thoroughly and when done, sign the papers.

PDI normally can't be done the same day as purchasing. It's set up when they have openings and the RV can be prepped. Most RV dealerships only have a few tech guys to do walk thrus and or setup the RV for towing. If they sell 5 in one day then there's no way they have the personnel to deal with PDI's. If something needs fixed before you buy it then those items should be addressed and repaired before the PDI. They aren't like trucks where they just wash it and hand you the keys.

My advice is to settle on a unit you want, check for issues, make sure those will be taken care of when you pick it up, then after everything meets your approval is when you hand the check over or sign the loan agreement.

If a deposit is needed then make sure in writing it's refundable. I have no problem giving them a deposit as along as I can back out. Although one shouldn't be needed.
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Old 05-16-2018, 10:03 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Cumminsfan View Post
......
3rd one was bought sight unseen over the phone. No deposit. I secured financing, but the dealer actually beat that rate slightly. Dealer did the walk thru for PDI, left us to look it over thoroughly and when done, sign the papers.
....
Will this work if the dealer has to order the RV you want from the manufacturer?
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Old 05-16-2018, 11:36 AM   #4
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Some dealerships and/or repair shops have several hook-up spots you can use for a day or two before leaving with your unit. If available I would take advantage of it. Sometimes there is a park within a few miles you can use for the same purpose.
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Old 05-16-2018, 12:55 PM   #5
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PDI happens *before* you sign the paperwork. I spent 7hrs on my PDI, 43' 5er.

Major issues uncovered should be taken care of before signing the paperwork and taking ownership. Minor issues, should you trust your dealer, can happen after the fact. I had a broken roller shade on mine found in PDI, the dealer had to order new one and then shipped it to me. Took about a month to get, I wasn't going to hold up the sale over such a small item.

If a major item was found, like a malfunctioning slide, darn well that better be fixed before I hand over money.

Worst case, you can always refuse to take delivery, read the fine print on your deposit (if you special ordered).

Shake down use in a local campground typically happens *after* you sign the paperwork (you already own it). RV dealers that would let the unit leave their lot without being paid for are few, few and far, far between.

Local campground for two days is what I did, should I have uncovered anything major I had a short distance to go to return it to their service dept. Lucky for me, nothing was uncovered.
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Old 05-16-2018, 09:20 PM   #6
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PDI happens *before* you sign the paperwork. I spent 7hrs on my PDI, 43' 5er
Could not agree more. 7hrs sounds about right.

General rule of thumb for a fw PDI, if you finished in less than 6 hours, you did not do it right. For a motor home, double that.

This is the PDI checklist i started with, and then added a few more items as time grew nearer.

http://www.angelfire.com/trek/buenav...PDI_V113_2.pdf

Show it to the dealer, and make very clear - in writing on the PO - that no final paper work will be signed until you make that inspection, and any issues that may come up are addressed to your satisfaction.

If the dealer will not agree to this, find another dealer ASAP. No dealer should object to the inspection that is mentioned in that link. Especially if they are ready to write up a new RV purchace.

Another benefit if this approach, is that when your done, you will be extremely familiar with all facets of your new RV.
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Old 05-17-2018, 06:55 AM   #7
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ac5501, thanks for the PDI checklist. I'll print it out and go over it. I'm sure it will cause thinking about issues I wasn't even aware of.
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Old 05-17-2018, 07:09 AM   #8
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Try to catch as many items as you can in PDI before you sign anything.

After I took delivery on a trailer I fixed all minor issues I found. Minor issues included leaky kitchen drain. I reached under there and hand tightened the fitting.
Bathroom faucet was clogged. I took off the strainer and cleaned out the sawdust.
Never had a major issue. Just about a dozen little things.

What will happen. You are out camping and a roller shade breaks. It is under warranty. Do you drop off the RV at the dealer for 6 weeks in the summer or just fix it yourself.

The more things you fix yourself the more you understand and become one with your RV.
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Old 05-17-2018, 08:28 AM   #9
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I agree with D: all of the above. We did all of our paperwork on line with the sales department 400 miles away. Did seem odd for me to do it via e-mail, but as our salesman said, that is the new norm. Got up early one saturday morning and drove to pick it up, and so far, so good. I have had to fix small issues as well.
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Old 05-17-2018, 09:34 AM   #10
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Will this work if the dealer has to order the RV you want from the manufacturer?
Don't know. Every dealer is different.
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Old 05-17-2018, 11:40 AM   #11
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I'd be interested to hear from someone who ordered a new RV from the factory through a dealer. Did you essentially take ownership when you placed the order? How does the PDI work in this case?
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Old 05-17-2018, 12:57 PM   #12
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I'd be interested to hear from someone who ordered a new RV from the factory through a dealer. Did you essentially take ownership when you placed the order? How does the PDI work in this case?
Ordered a $66k 5er in October, $2500 deposit, refundable on condition of defect.

I told them I didn't want to take delivery until start of Feb

Built and delivered to dealer at end of Dec.

End of Jan I scheduled PDI and did it on a Thursday. Told them barring any major issues uncovered during PDI that I would come by that Saturday to finalize paperwork and take ownership, which is what occurred.

No storage fees or pressure to take delivery before beginning of Feb.

Two minor issues were uncovered, broken shade and wrong key cylinder in baggage door, both sent to me a month later for a DIY swap.

I also told them that after delivery I would be taking the unit for a two day local shakedown, and expected timely repair should I have to come back to them after those two days. No issues uncovered during that shakedown.

At the end of the day, this is what I expect from a GOOD dealer.

Deal with a bad dealer, and YMMV.
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Old 05-17-2018, 03:56 PM   #13
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Ordered a $66k 5er in October, $2500 deposit, refundable on condition of defect.

I told them I didn't want to take delivery until start of Feb

Built and delivered to dealer at end of Dec.

End of Jan I scheduled PDI and did it on a Thursday. Told them barring any major issues uncovered during PDI that I would come by that Saturday to finalize paperwork and take ownership, which is what occurred.

No storage fees or pressure to take delivery before beginning of Feb.

Two minor issues were uncovered, broken shade and wrong key cylinder in baggage door, both sent to me a month later for a DIY swap.

I also told them that after delivery I would be taking the unit for a two day local shakedown, and expected timely repair should I have to come back to them after those two days. No issues uncovered during that shakedown.

At the end of the day, this is what I expect from a GOOD dealer.

Deal with a bad dealer, and YMMV.
What did you buy and where did you buy it....if that's not too personal???
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Old 05-17-2018, 06:28 PM   #14
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I'd be interested to hear from someone who ordered a new RV from the factory through a dealer. Did you essentially take ownership when you placed the order? How does the PDI work in this case?
Short answer, no at least not in my case.

Long answer - sorry in advance for the ramble:

Ordered mine late Feb. 2016 just after they started building the 17's. Ordered by phone after finding an add online for a unit I had checked out at dealers 100 + miles away from me.

The unit did not have auto level, and when I inquired about adding it, rep said that Lifestyle would not warranty a unit unless they installed the auto level themselves during assembly. She told me I could have one built for the same price as the existing one plus the cost of the auto level option. 37.2% off MSRP. That MSRP figure was in line with several other dealers MSRP figure on the same unit.

1000.00 down "non refundable" with the rest of the 10% due at signing. PO wording was very specific that I would not have to complete the transaction until/unless completely satisfied. Dealer's rep was very accommodating in regards to PDI, and was very knowledgeable.

In April I got an email from dealer that FW was scheduled for building. Some issues were found during the Lifestyle internal PDI, and I was told there would be a delay as they were fixed. This was fine with me as I wasn't really ready to pick it up yet anyhow.

Picked it up just before Memorial day 2016. Was 5 hrs late for the morning appointment, my PDI assistant fell thru leaving me to PDI by myself. It took the rest of the day, plus most of the next day to PDI and sign paperwork. Dealer had no problem with this, was very helpful, and address what issues I did find.

As for the dealer, I myself am very satisfied with the purchase and support they have provided me afterwards (especially for a high volume discount dealer) I really wasn't expecting much. They'll be among the first I call if I ever by new again, and they happen to carry the unit I'm interested in.

I will say they have some good and bad reviews out there, so not everybody has been happy with them. Hope its ok to post the dealer and rep name here.

Dealer - RV Wholesalers
Rep. - Cindy Fowler
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