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Old 08-11-2015, 12:01 AM   #1
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Talking About to take the RV plunge... Any words of wisdom?

Yep, this here is post #1, ladies and gentlemen. My new wife and I are about to dive in to motorhome world, quite likely, and it's both a lot exciting and a little intimidating. But all you RVers just seem to be having so much fun, I think we'll survive.

I don't mean for this to get too detailed, but if you want to throw out some words of wisdom for newbies like us (actually she's had a class A before and loved the heck out of it all), I'm all ears. So many brands, so many options, so many decisions and choices. All we really know is that want it to be able to pull a horse trailer occasionally and we want a non-convertible master bed, and we probably want gas, not diesel. We figure we're looking at at least 26 feet to get that, and have looked at some nice ones. No grandkids yet and that's likely more than a few years away at best, so it's pretty much just us two; we're in the Seattle area.

I'm also wondering if there's a best time of year to buy; pros and cons of buying new vs. used; all the usual newbie stuff like that. Any and all input is welcome and appreciated...
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Old 08-11-2015, 12:38 AM   #2
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So, years ago, I mentioned to a co-worker that I was considering buying a motorhome and driving it around in my retirement.

He replied, "Motorhome? My parents have had motorhomes for years. They LOVE it!"

Then, he asked, "Do you like fiddling with stuff?"

I said, "What do you mean, fiddling with stuff?"

"Oh, there's LOTS of stuff on there and it ALWAYS requires some degree of fiddling with."

He was right.

That's NOT, necessarily, a BAD thing.

Just be aware that there IS a LOT of stuff that needs FIDDLING with.

Take care,
Stu

P.S. I LOVE fiddling with stuff. And, that's a good thing.
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Old 08-11-2015, 12:50 AM   #3
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Yep, you either need to be able to fix stuff yourself or have a deep pocket to pull money out of!
Luckily we can do both or we wouldn't have the rig we do!
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Old 08-11-2015, 08:32 AM   #4
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Yes, I can imagine that there's plenty of stuff to fix/fiddle with when you're essentially driving a house down the road. I have no problem with that, although I'm no mechanic or advanced electrician. As with home ownership, I suppose, you do a lot of learning as you go and I'm OK with that, but I have no illusions that I'll be able to fix everything myself, either...
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Old 08-11-2015, 08:43 AM   #5
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Be certain you like the floorplan......if you are going to be spending a good bit of time in the MH you want to be comfortable - we wanted 1 and 1/2 baths, walk around bed, larger refrigerator, outdoor entertainment center, no less than 2 AC;s, bathroom accessible even when slides in and two slides minimum. Probably at least 34-35 ft long with good storage underneath and drawers in the BR for each of you. Happy searching -
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Old 08-11-2015, 08:54 AM   #6
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Pulling a horse trailer might limit your choice in motor homes. The total trailer weight and/or tongue weight might exceed the ratings of some motor homes.
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Old 08-11-2015, 09:15 AM   #7
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We bought our first(and only) motorhome 6 years ago & have been full timers for 5. We love it & can't imagine a different life style. We went to RV shows for several years, checking out the different styles, etc. You can see just about everything there. We ended up buying a 4 year old used one in excellent condition with low mileage. We also bought the Good Sam Extended Warranty. We've gotten our money's worth every year. We aren't great at fixing things. Some things we've learned along the way & have been able to do ourselves, but forget it when it comes to something big. Also, we've never been in a campground trying to fix something, where someone hasn't come along & wanted to help. It's just that way with the RV community. Put a lot of thought into your lifestyle, look at your options, then buy what fits your budget & enjoy. One other thing we've noticed is that most newbies are always moving. Take time to stop for a couple weeks & enjoy where you are. You don't have to sightsee everyday. Relax! It's a whole new way of life.
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Old 08-11-2015, 09:55 AM   #8
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Take your time .... look at as many as possible ... this will help determine what your priorities will be and go from there .... We also took a long while to find the right coach for us ... the shopping can be way fun ... so enjoy the adventure ...
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Old 08-11-2015, 10:31 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SandK View Post
Yep, this here is post #1, ladies and gentlemen. My new wife and I are about to dive in to motorhome world, quite likely, and it's both a lot exciting and a little intimidating. But all you RVers just seem to be having so much fun, I think we'll survive.

I don't mean for this to get too detailed, but if you want to throw out some words of wisdom for newbies like us (actually she's had a class A before and loved the heck out of it all), I'm all ears. So many brands, so many options, so many decisions and choices. All we really know is that want it to be able to pull a horse trailer occasionally and we want a non-convertible master bed, and we probably want gas, not diesel. We figure we're looking at at least 26 feet to get that, and have looked at some nice ones. No grandkids yet and that's likely more than a few years away at best, so it's pretty much just us two; we're in the Seattle area.

I'm also wondering if there's a best time of year to buy; pros and cons of buying new vs. used; all the usual newbie stuff like that. Any and all input is welcome and appreciated...

Welcome to IRV2! We're sure glad you joined us!
Just don't rush into anything. Do a LOT of tire kicking and don't believe everything the sales person tells you!

After you pretty much decide on what you would like to have, go to RVTrader.com or some of the other on-line sites and search for that same model. You can get a better idea of what you should be paying. If you can find an individual within traveling distance with one for sale you will probably be able to negotiate a better deal.

Good luck, happy trails, and God bless!
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Old 08-11-2015, 02:09 PM   #10
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Thanks, all. We've been looking at RV shows for the past few years and do have some definite preferences in floorplans and etc. And yes, there are some requirements, for sure, for towing a horse trailer -- we'll be sure to get that right. Amazing how many floorplans don't have any main seating that faces the TV -- but I guess you fit everything in as best you can...
Thanks much -- keep 'em coming!
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Old 08-11-2015, 04:41 PM   #11
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If you limit yourself to a particular class of motor home at a particular length you will find you limit your floor plan choices. Often times the options you want will also put you in a certain floor plan.
We know we want a class C. Wife isn't comfortable driving a class A. We want a outdoor kitchen. We do some bbq catering and use the motor home to pull my smoker to events and having the extra fridge, sink and cabinets on the outside is very useful to us.
We want 29 to 31 feet in length. These choices really box you in to one or two floor plans. And the only difference is the dinette and sofa are swapped sides.

We have a 2005 Coachmen. The new ones we are looking at that meet the criteria have the identical floor plan as our 2005 Coachmen. So after 11 years not much has changed floor plan wise.
If all your shopping for is floor plan and no other real requirements you can shop for months and consider all sorts of options. But if there are other needs besides floor plans those needs will choose a floor plan for you.
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Old 08-11-2015, 04:46 PM   #12
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Pulling a horse trailer might limit your choice in motor homes. The total trailer weight and/or tongue weight might exceed the ratings of some motor homes.
True. Our Type C had a 3,500# limit, our first Type A was also 3,500#'s, our first DP was 5,000#'s, our second DP was 6,000#'s and our present one is 15,000#'s
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Old 08-11-2015, 05:05 PM   #13
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We researched and looked for two years before we bought ours, not that you need to take that long but you do need to do your research and find what qualities are most important to you. If you spend the time looking/researching you will end buying a MH you love rather than settling for something and replacing it after a few years. For some it's price, others quality build and less time in the shop, others floor plan alone.

Take your time looking on this forum and read up on all the brands, what people like/dislike about them, things that break, how they are treated by the dealers/manufacturers, how long it takes for repairs to be done ect. You will start to develop what's important to you. Then go out and look/drive as many as you can and you will see what people are talking about as well as further develop your sense of quality.

Remember when looking that at the starting price point for MH's, many times spending a few thousand more will really improve the quality of what you buy as well as floor plan/amenities that you get. You get what you pay for and sometimes that "great deal" leaves a lot to be desired.

Don't be in a rush to buy, get what fits your needs and price you want to spend and you will be happy you did your research. Don't be afraid to go a little bigger than originally planned. You will get used to how big it is, but if you buy too small then you have to live with it until you upgrade if you can. As far as towing, towing a horse trailer may be a bit much, most gas MH's are in the 5000# towing capacity range.

Good Luck and remember looking for one is half the fun.
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Old 08-11-2015, 07:58 PM   #14
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Don't buy anything you cannot test drive.
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