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Old 12-08-2022, 06:40 PM   #1
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Rookie Considering Purchase

Hello all,

I am completely new to this and just starting my research. I've always loved the idea of RVing and recently rented a Class A motorhome with the family for a weekend.

I'm now considering a purchase but I am thoroughly lost on travel trailer vs motorhome, although I really prefer the motorhome concept.

We have 2 children ages 7 & 10 and realistically won't have a ton of time to do trips between their sports activities and life itself.

So, given I just rented one myself, I'm considering a purchase but will definitely rent it on RVshare, etc to A-not waste it sitting in a lot, B-recoup some of the expense.

I don't even know where to start but looked at a few class A and C motorhomes. I don't own a truck so if I went travel trailer, I would have to get a pick up and don't want anything bigger than an 1/2 ton.

Few questions to start:
1. If you're considering renting it, what would be most rentable?
2. If you go with a motorhome, class A or C for family of 4? I didn't mind driving the class A rental, but thinking many people may be scared to drive them compared to C
3. Top 3 quality brands that won't give me too much of a headache maintianing

I realize I will get many mixed opinions here but I really need a starting point!!

Thanks in advance for your knowledge
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Old 12-08-2022, 08:46 PM   #2
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Welcome!

Get ready though....the opinions will not be very mixed at all.... 10 to 1 you are going to hear, "Don't do it!"

You mention you won't use it much because of your kids schedule... That's not a good start.

Your mention if renting it out will get the strongest reaction... Most here will say "No way"

Lots will go wrong with the RV (especially if you are renting it out). It will likely be a deal killer if you cannot do most repairs yourself.

Compare advertised RV rental rates on the "Rent Your Own RV out" sites, then compare it to Cruise America/etc. Then ask yourself, will someone rent from me over Cruise America (or similar)?

Other than those things, I don't see any issues with your plan.

Questions welcome, and good luck!
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Old 12-08-2022, 10:31 PM   #3
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I had a 30ft class A and ended up selling it for a travel trailer with bunks in the rear. But I have a toddler and a baby. They don't do well on the pullout couch or table/bed yet. So bunk room with a slide was the best option for me. I also already had a 1500 truck.

The class A was a breeze to set up with the hydraulic levelers from the drivers seat. That was very nice! Less work than a travel trailer for a weekend warrior.

Class A is typically more expensive to buy up front. But if your buying a truck and trailer. Then it's up in the air.

Long road trips are WAY better in a class A. But again, my situation called for a trailer layout. You can find a cheaper class A gasser with a generator and do whatever type of camping you can imagine.
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Old 12-08-2022, 11:54 PM   #4
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You can have three successful rentals and then have someone completely destroy it. It won't be damaged on purpose, but between people never having driven an RV and just not caring, it can be easily damaged. If you read posts here, one of the biggest complaints is the time RV's sit at repair shops. Between lack of parts and employees, they can sit for months before they even look at it.

From your description of use, I would just keep renting as needed. Assemble some containers with equipment you may want for each trip and just load it up in a rental each time. If you don't have a spot to store the RV, you're looking at storage fees, DMV fees and a much higher insurance price since you'll be renting out the vehicle. Then you'll need a slush fund for repairs and maintenance.
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Old 12-09-2022, 07:50 AM   #5
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We know some people in Ohio who started with 1 travel trailer renting it. Now they are up to 6 travel trailers. When somebody rents one this lady has it taken to the campground, setup and ready for use. They meet the renters at the campground and go over instructions for operating things in the trailer. After the renters are done, they meet them at the campground, inspect the travel trailer and sign-off, if nothing is wrong.

The thing is, there is only a few campgrounds they will take the trailer. We talked before and she has told me, you need several units to make money. One reason, not enough income from one unit, several would be better. If you only have one unit, somebody returns it and unit needs repairs, it is out of service.
Now if it supposed to go right back out on another rent, but needs the repairs, are you going to stop the rental and give the money back to the new customer. Not only the income you lost, but you just caused some family to cancel their hard-earned vacation plans.
Legally, could they recoup any lost cost for tickets, etc...?
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Old 12-09-2022, 08:02 AM   #6
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In my opinion, for weekend camping with small kids, a travel trailer over the motorhome is a no brainer. There is just too much upkeep and maintenance expense with a motorhome to justify that. Even if you have to buy a new truck, your cost will likely be cheaper in the long run (and you'll have a new truck, which is useful whether camping or not.) Get a TT with a bunkhouse. The kids will want to invite friends along. As they grow, you will want something different, and it's much easier to change / upgrade with a TT vs a MH.
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Old 12-09-2022, 08:24 AM   #7
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Welcome to the forum!!

1. If you're considering renting it, what would be most rentable? The one closest to your home.

2. If you go with a motorhome, class A or C for family of 4? Whichever one provides the most living space and you are comfortable driving.

3. Top 3 quality brands that won't give me too much of a headache maintianing
Good experience with Winnebego, Thor,......

If you consider purchasing, a travel or fifth wheel trailer will offer the lowest initial and on-going (maintenance, registration, insurance) costs and offer lots of living space BUT you need to have a suitable tow vehicle.
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Old 12-09-2022, 08:29 AM   #8
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Glad you and the family enjoyed camping, the next decision may change that. Getting into an RV is an expensive process. So think about how much you want to spend. Renting your RV is a bad idea, as many have already said. So do not plan on an income stream to help justify this purchase.
So now you have the new vs used debate. Then the Class A/B/C trailer one. And then no matter what you pick there will be issues once you buy it.
We started with a class B with class A equipment but that would never fit all 4 of you. Then a Class A when we had kids. It worked great, you become very popular when going to soccer matches and marching band events with a warm dry space with a toilet! Also saved on hotels. Now that it is just 2 of us a travel trailer and pickup are optimal. Much cheaper than the A and you would be surprised how useful a pickup is in life outside camping.
So for now, keep researching and as you learn remember what life would be like if you picked the Class A/B/C or trailer and see how you feel. The journey is not just on the road it is in picking one too!
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Old 12-09-2022, 08:36 AM   #9
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Hello all,

Thanks for all the feedback. Gives me some things to think about.

There are some management companies in my area that handle all the bookings so I don't have to deal with meeting the renters, going over everything, etc, etc. They obviously take a cut of the rental, but also handle everything as far as the rental goes, taking a lot of the headache away from me and my time.

As part of this fee, they also keep the unit at their location so I wouldn't need to worry about storage fees as I can't keep it at my own property. I understand things will go wrong and repairs needed, but if you are renting it enough to at least cover your costs, it seems to be a pretty good investment. I'm not really looking to make a ton of money (but would gladly take it) but rather, not let it go to waste in storage for most of the year.

If I would go down the rental route, do you think it would be easier to rent a travel trailer vs motorhome? I personally would enjoy the motorhome more for my own use, but trying to understand what moves more as a rental. According to RV share site, majority of their rentals are travel trailers and quite a bit of income is being generated.

I just love the class As and the convenience of just getting in and going vs hitching up and all the set up with the trailer.
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Old 12-09-2022, 08:56 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JAC34 View Post
Hello all,

I am completely new to this and just starting my research. I've always loved the idea of RVing and recently rented a Class A motorhome with the family for a weekend.

I'm now considering a purchase but I am thoroughly lost on travel trailer vs motorhome, although I really prefer the motorhome concept.

We have 2 children ages 7 & 10 and realistically won't have a ton of time to do trips between their sports activities and life itself.

So, given I just rented one myself, I'm considering a purchase but will definitely rent it on RVshare, etc to A-not waste it sitting in a lot, B-recoup some of the expense.

I don't even know where to start but looked at a few class A and C motorhomes. I don't own a truck so if I went travel trailer, I would have to get a pick up and don't want anything bigger than an 1/2 ton.

Few questions to start:
1. If you're considering renting it, what would be most rentable?
2. If you go with a motorhome, class A or C for family of 4? I didn't mind driving the class A rental, but thinking many people may be scared to drive them compared to C
3. Top 3 quality brands that won't give me too much of a headache maintianing

I realize I will get many mixed opinions here but I really need a starting point!!

Thanks in advance for your knowledge
Wow! If 50% of the public wouldn’t be idiots, I think owning a rental unit would work. Go ahead and do it and please check back in with us in about 2 or 3 years when you try to sell it.
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Old 12-09-2022, 09:09 AM   #11
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My thoughts. First I’d never rent my rv to anyone. Second if your trying to rent it to recoup some of your investment or reduce your storage costs, you probably couldn’t afford an rv in the first place. I am a very positive person, but your proposal is a flawed approach unless you have a lot of discretionary money and are very handy with self repairs. That and you assume your customers will care for your investment as you would. Hope all works out whatever you decide, but I’m with Country Road.
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Old 12-09-2022, 09:33 AM   #12
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Renting out my motorhome to complete strangers is not something I would do. Whatever could go wrong, will in time, go wrong. I'm sure it works for some, but the potential for loss and disappointment would prevent me from doing it. To get something "Rentable" will require a major investment as opposed to something that just your family could enjoy. IMHO, the risk is greater than the potential benefit. However, is sounds as if you have convinced yourself it would work for you. If so, don't invest any more than you can afford to lose, as the potential for loss is very real.

Edit: The real winner in a rental through an agent is the AGENT. No investment, no risk and no headache. Just collect the fee. It's a no risk Win for them.
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Old 12-09-2022, 10:29 AM   #13
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My thoughts. First Iíd never rent my rv to anyone. Second if your trying to rent it to recoup some of your investment or reduce your storage costs, you probably couldnít afford an rv in the first place. I am a very positive person, but your proposal is a flawed approach unless you have a lot of discretionary money and are very handy with self repairs. That and you assume your customers will care for your investment as you would. Hope all works out whatever you decide, but Iím with Country Road.
Thanks, I can easily afford an RV, I just don't like it to be sitting idle for months on end. Seems wasteful to me and just was thinking how to get some use out of it as much as I can while also covering some of the cost so not to waste its life away.

I get the risk, just was asking between the 2 options, motorhome vs travel trailer, which would be more appealing to people.

I get that people don't want strangers using their baby, but things can alway be fixed, just need a good dealer and use your rental profit for repairs/maintenance. Not to mention security deposits that come with the rentals along with renters insurance all required by RVshare and the like. Lots of coverage to cover your ass that the renter pays for. Unless it rolls off a mountain side in a fiery ball, all things can be fixed!

But I get it, not for everyone!
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Old 12-09-2022, 10:39 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by JAC34 View Post

If I would go down the rental route, do you think it would be easier to rent a travel trailer vs motorhome?

Just about everyone would be able to rent/drive your RV (assuming it isn't over the max weight for a regular driver's license).


Most everyone does NOT have a truck to pull a trailer (...unless you are also renting them your truck + trailer).


-Chris
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