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Old 04-09-2016, 06:37 PM   #1
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Buying and selling motorhomes

I have been thinking about going in a different direction with my investment ideas. I have been thinking about buying and selling motorhomes. I have plenty of storage space. I actually have an opportunity to purchase a practically brand new class c for an unbelievable price and thought that i could sell for a decent profit. Just wondering if anyone else has done this or thought about it? Not jumping into anything. Just contemplating the idea...thanks in advance for any thoughts.
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Old 04-09-2016, 06:44 PM   #2
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Good luck.
I have always sold at a loss.
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Old 04-09-2016, 08:06 PM   #3
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In most jurisdictions a motorhome is considered a "motor vehicle" which requires a dealers license to legally sell at a retail level.

Are you a licensed auto dealer?
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Old 04-09-2016, 08:21 PM   #4
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No. Not a licensed dealer. In maryland, by law, you can sell a few motor vehicles per year without a license. Im not trying to go big time. Just thinking about the idea.
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Old 04-09-2016, 09:45 PM   #5
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My brother in law started out that way and now has two locations, and may buy a third. He did it the right way though and got his dealer's license, bought the appropriate insurances, and hired the right people. At first it was just him and another guy, they bought used MH's at the auctions, refurbished them, and sold them at a pretty good profit. He now has a couple of new RV franchises for both trailers and MH's, and still does the used MH refurbishing. The one thing to be careful about though is the liability. He takes great care in making sure the used ones he refurbishes go out in the safest/best possible condition, new tires, engines serviced properly, roofs and all appliances checked out and serviced if needed. He has done real well for himself and could retire any day he wants. But it is way more than just buying one and re-selling for a profit, there is a lot of liability that goes with it.
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Old 04-10-2016, 08:10 AM   #6
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I think if you're looking at it as a hobby, unless you are in possession of the right skill sets, you're about to get an expensive lesson.

Some guys can do this and make it look easy. Others get burned big time.
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Old 04-10-2016, 08:16 AM   #7
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If you have the skill sets, or can rapidly build/hire them - both hard and soft skills - and think you have the marketing and business acumen - and of course the financial wherewithal. Go for it. I worked for myself for 16 years - as with anything there are pro and cons. But nothing ventured nothing gained.
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Old 04-10-2016, 08:51 AM   #8
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It can be done. In the car dealer's (which I was for ten years) lingo, this is called "curbing" (selling as many units per year as the law allows, but without dealer license.

While I was in military full time, I did a LOT of curbing. Fancy, local (for the country I was in at any given time) cars, that I cleaned up (detailed/serviced to the "T"), and had them sold (mostly to my friends on the base) before I was even done playing with them. I had them all,.....Ferraris, Lambos, R&Rs, you name it. Every high end car on the planet. I did it as a hobby. I love to play with machinery. And I drove them daily. Sold them all for substantial profit. I NEVER sold a vehicle at loss.

Last year I did the same thing with a first MH in my life. I purchased one just to take it on couple trips, and see whether I will like this, or not. Also I like to learn new things, and that first MH taught me a lot about MHs in general. I completely refurbished the inside (on my own). Material/furniture/fixtures/plumbing......... cost only. All of it my labor. Before I was even done with it, people that come by on my ranch (delivery people, friends, etc,) already asked several times "is it for sale"? When I decided that I need longer MH, DP, more HP....etc. I called ONE person (the one that was asking about it more than once), and had it sold in one hour. Since I'm not in the business of selling vehicles any more, I sold it CHEAP. I recovered my original purchase price, all the material/fixture cost, and enough labor costs to pay a person of this qualification to do it all (I would not work for that hourly wage). It took me two months to do it working 4-6 hours a day (including weekends). That includes trips to the stores, warehouses, dealers, etc. for parts, specialty tools, etc.

Wife said I sold it too cheap (it was like new inside and out, and I guarantee there is not another one in CA of that vintage/mileage/condition). I sold it to a neighbor, that had a need for it (really needed extra space for his kid, and thought it would be nice to drive it on the weekends). I didn't want to charge him what I could've sold it for to a person I don't know.

So to answer your question,......yes it can be done. There are several skills that come into play (and I hope you posses them). Product knowledge is one of them. Art of negotiation is another. These two are very important not to buy a "turd", and to buy the unit BELOW all "books', "markets"....and all BS people believe in. Remember.........ANYTHING is worth only as much as somebody is willing to pay for it. No "book value", no "market value"......nothing like that. Buying used vehicles is a lot like playing Poker. You need to read your opponent, and figure out which (CASH) offer he can not say "no" to.

Then you come to other (more exact) skills you will need. How well do you run the buffer to buff the gelcoat/clearcoat (or how well do you run carpet cleaning machine)? How well can you remove/replace graphics? How good of a "hobby mechanic" are you? Do you have tools you will need? How about jacks (these things are heavy)? Do you have connections to get parts you will possibly need at wholesale? What are your plumbing skills? Can you replace flooring? It's a long list my friend. If you have to "farm out" all this....you WILL NOT make profit!

Is it possible? By all means,.......however, there ARE easier ways to make money. Trust me.
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Old 04-10-2016, 02:20 PM   #9
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I was just thinking about it as a hobby and not a job. I am self employed and have a business with employees and all the headache that comes with that. Thanks alot for the replies. This cane up because i have the opportunity to buy a 2014 class c that is practically brand new for a price that is very low and thought that I could sell for a decent profit. Thanks again
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Old 04-10-2016, 05:37 PM   #10
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This would be a tough business unless you stick with entry level (read cheap) RVs. The lower cost models might work out okay, but trying to sell the higher end (read expensive) models would be tough. We are on RV number six. The first four I've sold myself...including a Class C and a high end 5th wheel. However, I traded our last MH...way too expensive to try to sell as an individual. Plus, I wanted the cash from that sale to put toward the new RV. So, it was easier all around to trade with the dealer.
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Old 04-19-2016, 09:56 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by motohomo View Post
I have been thinking about going in a different direction with my investment ideas. I have been thinking about buying and selling motorhomes. I have plenty of storage space. I actually have an opportunity to purchase a practically brand new class c for an unbelievable price and thought that i could sell for a decent profit. Just wondering if anyone else has done this or thought about it? Not jumping into anything. Just contemplating the idea...thanks in advance for any thoughts.
You say you have plenty of space, I am unsure how much you have, but consider a venture in RV storage rather than buying/fixing/selling. This assumes you can get proper zoning. I have a friend that has earned a nice living providing opened, top covered and full covered stoarge for RV's. He has not had an open space for years.

He also sells a few RV's on consignment so he has no cash invested. He has cash flowed the whole deal starting with open storage and moved to covered storage in phases. Just a suggestion.
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Old 04-19-2016, 12:58 PM   #12
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Vaper3000 nice idea. Something to think about.
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Old 04-19-2016, 07:15 PM   #13
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Vapor3000 brings up an excellent idea. It seems covered storage is getting harder and harder to find. In our area it's very limited. We were very lucky to get ours, and I would never tell the owner, but he could charge a lot more than he does.
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Old 04-19-2016, 09:15 PM   #14
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I believe here in Ohio you can sell 6 vehicles a year w/o needing a dealers license

W/o a doubt depending in the price you could make money on it, or it could sit for many many months and you could break even at best. Totally depends on what it is and what you can get it for. Possibly check out pplmotorhomes.com and look at what a similar RV has sold for there. Might give you a idea if it's worth the effort or not.
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