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Old 02-01-2012, 04:58 PM   #1
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local Dealer purchase Vs online

Hi everyone, this will be my first rig and my question is for all you seasoned RVers, there is a big price difference between rigs found in local dealers vs online search all over east coast, now if i was buying a car i wouls try to find the nicest car for the least amount of money but with MH i am not so sure, is it worth paying the extra dough to purchase from a local dealer? most likely i will either buy a brand nre rig or one that is 1 or 2 yrs old, but the problem is slightly used MHs ( 1 or 2 yrs) are not any less expensive than new ones! your thoughts? thank you.
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Old 02-01-2012, 05:29 PM   #2
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comparing apples to apples... if you did find a similar coach online cheaper, you could always use it as a negotiation tactic with the local guy to sell it cheaper.
Really before you start all that you should decide what and how you want to pay... prearrange all that before hand and see if a quick closing might move the deal forward.
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Old 02-01-2012, 05:36 PM   #3
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Thanks

Thanks todd,,,, i feel like i am 16 and buying my first car,,lol....but a MH is a such a pleasure that i want to make sure i do it right.
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Old 02-01-2012, 05:43 PM   #4
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comparing apples to apples... if you did find a similar coach online cheaper, you could always use it as a negotiation tactic with the local guy to sell it cheaper.
Really before you start all that you should decide what and how you want to pay... prearrange all that before hand and see if a quick closing might move the deal forward.
This is what we did. I can't comment on buying used... except that IMO it's a good idea... but on a new rig you might want to do a little research to find out how easily you'll be able to get service in your area if you don't buy locally. Some dealers, mine included, give their own customers preference when scheduling appointments and put "outsiders" at the bottom of their priority list. This may or may not be an issue in your area.

I Googled the type of coach I wanted to buy... a new Itasca Ellipse DP... and then sent emails to about 20 dealers across the nation telling them I had decided on what I wanted and wanted to know their best price on the unit they had advertised. About half replied with a price... the other half wanted me to call them which I refused to do.

I took these emails in to my local dealer when it was time to negotiate. I explained to them that I would prefer to buy locally but wouldn't pay more than a very small amount for that privilege. We were able to reach agreement on a price and they have supported me very well.

Best of luck.

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Old 02-02-2012, 06:29 AM   #5
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Your system works well Ricko. I use the same one to buy new cars. The same dealer has bested the lowest price 7 times now. Good for him Good for me.
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Old 02-02-2012, 09:27 AM   #6
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New coaches will have issues! Service is important...but is the local dealer capable to do more complex issues vs a large dealer or factory service! I have needed to go to the factory for slide issues..or find a dealer with the resources to do the repair. Closest dealer to my home is 100 miles away...not a big dealer or have the needed expertise for really complex repairs! All that being said ...next time I will give more consideration to the local dealer..better to have service done during down time ( while at home) locally, than when traveling ie fl ... at the fl dealers peak season! Wait wait wait.
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Old 02-02-2012, 10:35 AM   #7
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...i am not so sure, is it worth paying the extra dough to purchase from a local dealer?
I bought two TT's from a nearby dealer and my current 5er factory direct from 1,200 miles away. The big variable is the quality of the dealer's after sale support. Mine was lousy, actually zero, so I lost nothing by buying elsewhere.

If you can find a nearby dealer that will stick with you then its worth some $.
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Old 02-02-2012, 11:30 AM   #8
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RickO gives excellent advice, who was it that said boldness increases with every hundred miles distance between buyer/seller?
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Old 02-02-2012, 07:32 PM   #9
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We purchased new from a local dealer but before we decided on which RV, we rented. This gave us a feel for floor plans and systems/options and the RV traveling/camping experience. It nice having our service done less then a half hour away from home plus he gave us the best price after visiting different dealers and RV Shows.
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Old 02-02-2012, 09:14 PM   #10
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Thanks todd,,,, i feel like i am 16 and buying my first car,,lol....but a MH is a such a pleasure that i want to make sure i do it right.
Best advice I could give you is to "sleep on it". Even having looked at many coaches... I overlooked something on my current unit. Nothing terrible just an "Oh darn... I should have seen that!"
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Old 02-03-2012, 10:25 AM   #11
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When you buy from a dealer, depending on state laws, there is an implied warranty of roadworthyness.. (Many states have laws saying the vehicle a dealer sells MUST BE SAFE TO DRIVE unless clearly marked otherwise)

When you buy from a "Previous owner" no such warranty applies.

Also, in the case of RV's the Dealer is supposed to give you a walk through, showing and/or demonstrating every system on/in the coach, showing location of fuse boxes, and such.. Again, not so the private seller.
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Old 02-03-2012, 11:28 AM   #12
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I bought my current rv, A 06 Allegro Bay from a dealer on line. I negotiated a fair price for my trade and made arrangements to travel 850miles to Florida to comsumate the deal, if it was to my liking. I deposited a $1ooo refundable deposit to hold thecoach. I then hired an inspection to check out the coach before I made the trip. I ended buying the coachfor about $25000 less than a conparable coach seen locally. I would not hesitate to buy another one on line. Just be sure you get a bill of sale and title when you pay for it.
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Old 02-03-2012, 01:51 PM   #13
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I bought from a local dealer and am glad I did. Then again, this was my first DP and there was a lot that I didn't know, still is. They provided a warranty which I have used, a 24/7 cell phone number for help, and always got me in for prompt repairs even when their shop was busy (which is most of the time). They take care of their customers first, before they go on to someone else's.

Online retailers can always sell cheaper because once they have your check they don't plan on ever seeing you again. Their costs are lower so they can sell cheaper, it's that simple. You are now someone else's problem. Maybe you've got legitimate issues but what are you going to do? Sue them across state lines? Good luck with that and you better have real deep pockets.

I disagree with the approach of having multiple companies go through the work of putting together a price for you when there is no intention of buying from them. That is a cost they bear and they have no chance to recoup it, let alone make a profit. If you told them that is what you were going to do, just use them for bargaining purposes, then they would decline. If you don't tell them then it's being dishonest.

Studies I have read found that the best value point for a buyer is when the coach is 4-5 years old. That is the period when depreciation has really taken it's toll but the asset still has a lot of life in it. The depreciation from that point on tends to flatten out percentage wise.

All things being equal I will try to buy my next coach from a local dealer. All things being unequal (within reason) I will do the same.
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Old 02-03-2012, 05:49 PM   #14
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I disagree with the approach of having multiple companies go through the work of putting together a price for you when there is no intention of buying from them. That is a cost they bear and they have no chance to recoup it, let alone make a profit. If you told them that is what you were going to do, just use them for bargaining purposes, then they would decline. If you don't tell them then it's being dishonest.

.
You may have misunderstood the approach I outlined.

In the emails I sent to dealers nation wide I explained that I was shopping for a particular coach and wanted to know the best price they could offer. I don't think that put them through much "extra work" to respond to. And, if one of them had offered a substantially better deal I was ready to travel to buy my rig. I was willing to pay a small premium to purchase locally but wasn't going to give away the farm to do it.

I saw absolutely nothing dishonest about it.

Rick
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