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Old 01-28-2018, 05:45 PM   #1
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Long distance rig buying.

Im searching everywhere in the continental United States for a rig. My question is , how would you handle the negotiations without dropping $ $ $ flying back and forth? . I am trying to make this painless on my wallet as possible. It would be great if i could fly in, give them a check and head home..my purchase will happen in 30 days if possible.
I know hiring in a tech to go through it is the best way to deal with this. I am running all of this off savings. Any answer will be appreciated. So HELP me out please
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Old 01-28-2018, 05:57 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by mikeypj View Post
Im searching everywhere in the continental United States for a rig. My question is , how would you handle the negotiations without dropping $ $ $ flying back and forth? . I am trying to make this painless on my wallet as possible. It would be great if i could fly in, give them a check and head home..my purchase will happen in 30 days if possible.
I know hiring in a tech to go through it is the best way to deal with this. I am running all of this off savings. Any answer will be appreciated. So HELP me out please
I've done it! If you know what your looking for and have a good amount of knowledge. I've only done it when buying from the original owners. I wouldn't trust a dealer at all. (From experience) Right now I'm window shopping for a new to me dual wheel truck. I'm on the west coast but I like you am searching any and all states. Saving a few thousand is nice but for me it's more about finding the right rig for a fair price. If I found 2 identical trucks with say around 25,000 miles on them. One is sitting on a LOT in my area with a salesmen telling me what he or she knows about. The other is on the east coast, one owner with all maintenance records, and everything he or she tells me is first hand experience and records. Well I'm flying to the east coast and driving home
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Old 01-28-2018, 06:09 PM   #3
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I've done it twice.

Once was close enough for me to drive (7 hours) to show up on their doorstep, and my latest purchase was much further away, so I did not show up. Both were brand new rigs.

In the instance where I showed up, I showed up unannounced after some phone calls and some emails back and forth. I was on their doorstep when they unlocked the door. What I noticed is they were NOT going to let me leave without coming to a solid deal, that worked great, it really was a great price.

My latest purchase, the guy told me the outdoor price up front in the first phone call, and no amount of haggling changed that price. I wired them them money, and hired a driver to deliver it to me.

CAVEAT: I REALLY trusted this second dealer. They came highly recommended from several sources, and there was ZERO run around, no pressure, no games, no addon fee's, no "oh and"'s and when it came time to get my rig ready and install extras, they did it in a very reasonable time frame.. like, right away. I was updated daily, and they had it PDI'd and installs complete in 5 days. And they only asked for the money after all of that was complete. It was the best dealer transaction I've ever had.

I've spoken to many dealers where there is NO WAY in the world I would have done same thing with them. You can just tell the difference. So when buying at a distance, the dealer matters a lot.

If it's an individual with a used unit, I have a list of questions, I run through them succinctly, and then shut up and let them talk, paying close attention to tone and the things they add to fill the empty space in the conversation. That's when you learn about that hail storm they were in once...

WHAT you are looking for I would suspect will alter the nature of the person or dealer selling it, and therefore alter the interaction between the two of you.

What kind, type, of rig are you looking for?
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Old 01-28-2018, 06:15 PM   #4
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Three times now for us. First was web search, found dealer, made phone offer (new TT), bought TT. Second was like the first except we drove from California to Ohio so we could trade in our TT on a new TT. Third was a motorhome, dealer about 8 hrs away. Drove up with our 5ver to trade in. Finalized deal, moved stuff from 5ver to MH (2 days!) drove off!! Wheee!

It can be done!
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Old 01-28-2018, 07:16 PM   #5
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I've bought at a distance. Found a candidate coach. Negotiated a price - contingent on inspections and final acceptance. Provided a refundable deposit.

Had professional inspections done on house and chassis. Had seller fix issues found and renegotiated price (this just like you would do if buying a sticks and Bricks house).

Then flew to see the coach myself - doing final inspection and acceptance.

How the money balance is handled depends on if the seller has it financed, you are paying cash, etc.
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Old 01-28-2018, 08:16 PM   #6
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We did it all over the internet and required only one trip to see a rig we did not buy.
We actually have done it twice. First thing was to go to a couple of dealer near us that handled many different brands. Then lots of research on the one we wanted. Then once the decision was made we negotiated via the internet and actually had three different offers. Two met our price but bought from the one closer (still a 1200 mile flight).
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Old 01-28-2018, 08:22 PM   #7
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I've bought at a distance. Found a candidate coach. Negotiated a price - contingent on inspections and final acceptance. Provided a refundable deposit.

Had professional inspections done on house and chassis. Had seller fix issues found and renegotiated price (this just like you would do if buying a sticks and Bricks house).

Then flew to see the coach myself - doing final inspection and acceptance.

How the money balance is handled depends on if the seller has it financed, you are paying cash, etc.


I’m interested in the same thing. How did you identify “professional inspectors”?
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Old 01-28-2018, 08:31 PM   #8
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I’m interested in the same thing. How did you identify “professional inspectors”?
For one, a gas coach, I found a local RV dealer to do the house inspection and they recommended a shop for chassis that used a AAA checklist process.

For another, a DP, I found a local inspector via Google to do the house. Had Freightliner to do the chassis.
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Old 01-28-2018, 08:56 PM   #9
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We eventually bought our coach 1400 miles away after looking one over that was 600 miles away. All this after a great amount of research here, there, and everywhere. Many, many questioning phone calls and emails. We knew we were going to have dealer fix issues with non-selling dealers so we planned how to do with that. Both brand new nearly identical coaches. Arranged to stay for as many days as it takes with pedi and corrections for anything found needing work. Although nearly identical coaches, we bought ours for $20,000 less and figured we could get a mobile repair service a whole bunch and still save money. Turned out not to be an issue; FR preauthorized the work on our call up front-we paid the worker and FR reimbursed us quickly.
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Old 01-29-2018, 06:53 AM   #10
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Im looking for a gasser, but if a DP with a great price falls in the list I'll gladly look at it. This is a first timer rig and im ok with driving cross country bringing it home. This has been a 3 yr vision that will finally happen in the next few months. Ive got 3 pages of questions i am going to ask. Ive even considered having the seller taking videos of under carriage slides working and such. Im a pretty handy guy so i plan on doing alot to the rig. But i will need to fly out for my final go through before driving it home. ( BTW i hate flying) and its a private seller not a sales person..
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Old 01-29-2018, 06:56 AM   #11
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Three times now for us. First was web search, found dealer, made phone offer (new TT), bought TT. Second was like the first except we drove from California to Ohio so we could trade in our TT on a new TT. Third was a motorhome, dealer about 8 hrs away. Drove up with our 5ver to trade in. Finalized deal, moved stuff from 5ver to MH (2 days!) drove off!! Wheee!

It can be done!
Thats what im hoping i can do.
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Old 02-01-2018, 06:18 PM   #12
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I've done it! If you know what your looking for and have a good amount of knowledge. I've only done it when buying from the original owners. I wouldn't trust a dealer at all. (From experience) Right now I'm window shopping for a new to me dual wheel truck. I'm on the west coast but I like you am searching any and all states. Saving a few thousand is nice but for me it's more about finding the right rig for a fair price. If I found 2 identical trucks with say around 25,000 miles on them. One is sitting on a LOT in my area with a salesmen telling me what he or she knows about. The other is on the east coast, one owner with all maintenance records, and everything he or she tells me is first hand experience and records. Well I'm flying to the east coast and driving home
I did it last year and I agree totally with We'redoingit. We live in Maine and bought in Oregon. The key is to do your homework and ask for maintenance records and number of previous owners. Photos also will tell you the quality of the coach and the care it received. I finally pulled the trigger when I saw the price and knew it was a good deal.
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Old 02-01-2018, 06:42 PM   #13
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Done it. Is a few thousand miles & 3 plane rides far enough? Private sale.

After extensive research we were down to just a few, rare, models. The online search began. 4 month search found one, right model, near new, with near new truck, located near Austin, TX. A few months after spotting the rig, November was first contact with owner. The price had been dropped substantially. Excellent price. What amounted to a little under MSRP for the trailer with a free 16,000 mile 3500 diesel truck thrown in.

Some emails & phone calls to Texas later & we were on a plane, stuff for the trailer packed in our bags. Used sellers bank to host temporary escrow acct. Deposited my bankers check, his bank took what was owed, he got the rest, we got the title. Easy.
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Old 02-01-2018, 07:06 PM   #14
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I found the exact coach we were looking for at a dealership online.
The challenging part was that it was 3,000 miles across country.
After establishing a good rapport over the phone with the Sales Manager and communicating for roughly a month, we settled on a selling price and I put down a deposit, contingent on the coach passing my inspection.
I flew out to look at the coach and to take it for a test drive and found it to be better than expected, and also learned more about it's history from the original Salesman.
We closed the deal that day, and my Wife and I flew back out two weeks later to pick it up.
The round trip flight for me, one flight for my Wife and I, and a couple of nights in a hotel totalled about $1,000.00.
If you are serious about a long distance purchase, you need to factor these costs into your plans along with any expenses to get it home.
On the drive home, we did find a few issues, but the dealership stepped up to cover the costs, which were actually repaired at the manufacturer's service facility, so we knew it was being repaired by Service Techs that were familiar with the coach.
We felt the entire process was a positive experience and we finished up with a wonderful coach.
The dealership could not have been better to deal with and we love our RV.
You definitely need to do your homework and research, go online and read the model's reviews, look for published recalls, request plenty of photos and study them, ask lots for questions, have a gut sense about who you are dealing with and always remember, "Cash is King" whenever you are negotiating price.
I can't say every long distance deal will prove to be a good one, but for us, it worked perfect, and we are now 9 months later and could not be happier..
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