We just got done with our six months shopping. Our advantage was this is our second and we knew exactly what we wanted, not what we thought we might want. You are ahead of the game if you know what you want and what you can live without when looking.
We did not want anything older than 2005 and I wanted an E450 chassis. We did not want slides but wanted a queen bed that was not sandwiched in the corner.
Our max length was 27' as that's the max length allowed for some places we like to camp. We almost bought new but a queen in a slide soured us. We wanted a bed that did not need the slide extended to use.
We got lucky and found a 2006 27' with no slides, a queen walk around, lots of storage, and only 17,000 miles with all the upgrades imcluding 6V GC batteries and everything else we wanted for just under $30,000 from a dealer. It was cleaner than many of the new and nearly new ones we looked at. It had a good set of Michelins on it but they are in the recall so I will be getting all new Michelins on it free. Had to drive to the next state to get it but saved ourselves $40,000 over what we were looking at in striped down new models without options.
I've been adding and changing out things like going to all LED lighting, adding a 150 psi compressor, moving the back-up camera, etc. Looking forward to using it within a month or so as soon as the salt is off the roads up here.
Shop around. There are good deals out there but you won't find them unless you know the minimum you want and what you can't live with. Be ready to buy with cash in hand when you find one. If it's that good a deal it won't sit long as the season is starting.
Just noticed they will be looking at a class A in a year or so. I would not buy a C now just to sell it in a year. If they have not used one, rent a C or an A a few times and then they will have a better idea of what they want in an A next year. Or, why get a C now and wait for the A? Just go for the A if they know that's what they want. Interest rates are low right now. They might not be next year when they want to upgrade.
2006 Fleetwood Tioga 26Q
Toads: '15 Ford Focus, '10 Harley Softail Custom and '15 Harley Softail Deluxe
Upstate (the other) New York