unapuravida, welcome to iRV2.com. You have come to the best RV enthusiest website on the internet. My dad tacught me that you will ususally get what you pay for. With that in mind and you saying that you may be able to buy a motorhome for under $1000, we can't expect too much. You could have any number of problems, it all depends on how well the owners took care of the unit and maintained everything. I would get a buddy that knows all about cars and can fix or rebuild the drive train look at the chassis side of things. If it has a generator have him check that too. Look at the DOT date box on the tires as usually the tread is ok but the age is not; replace if over 6 years old. Hopefully you can check it out while it is raining. Look for leaks, softspots in ceiling and wall; floor too. Soft spots are wood rot from water and are expensive to repair. You should have a qualified person perform an LP gas leak test on the LP gas system. CHeck all appliances. Make sure the coach is level and turn on the refrigerator. It could take 24 hours for it to get good temperatures throughout the whole box. Since you want to use it in winter make sure the furnace still works and the fan does not sound like it is going to come out. It make work for awhile but with its age could get hot and then the bearing could start to squeal; so run it for a long time. Check all of the electrical systems; you have two: 1- DC volts for inside lighting, furnace, battery with charging. The outside lighting will be off the chassis battery and the alenator should charge both batteries. 2- 120 volt AC for the air conditioner, receptacles, TV (TV could be 12 v DC) and converter uses 120 volts AC to put out 13.8 volts DC to recharge the batteries.
You might try to get some college buddies that know about these different systems and mechanics to help you check it out. Buy them some beer and pizza and they will be glad to. Good luck and let us know what you find.
Mike, RVIA & RVSA Certified Master RV Technician
Amy, Dr. Assistant - Roxie & Mei Ling, four legs each
2000 Gulf Stream Scenic Cruiser 450 hp & 1330# torque
06 Saturn Vue, 06 Chevy Z71 4x4 & 2014 Corvette Z51 M7