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Why Fall Is a Terrible Time to Sell Your RV

Why Fall Is a Terrible Time to Sell Your RV

There’s a season for everything, including selling an RV. If you want to get the most bang for your buck, the timing of putting your rig on the market is crucial.

Typically, fall is one of the worst times of year to list your camper for sale. You might leave several thousand dollars on the table.

Today, we’re sharing why you might want to think twice about trying to sell your RV in the fall. Let’s dive in!

It's The Perfect Time To Sell An RV -- We Explain Why!

Think Twice About Selling Your RV This Fall

If you no longer love your RV, you may be considering trying to sell it this fall. However, before you slap a “for sale” sign on it, you might want to consider the whole picture. Between rising interest rates and slowing demand, the fall RV market isn’t promising for sellers. 

Additionally, many owners discover they owe substantially more than what their RV is worth. A massive decrease in demand has magnified the depreciation RVs experience. RVIA’s most recent report indicates a 45% decrease in new shipments.

Pro Tip: Make sure to do these 7 Easy Things to Do to Quickly Sell Your RV before you put your rig on the market.

Class A motorhome priced to sell
Before you slap a for sale sign on your RV this fall, you may want to wait a few months.

5 Reasons Fall Is a Terrible Time to Sell Your RV

It’s crucial to remember that the decrease in demand and higher rates this fall are typically temporary. This time next year could be a different picture. However, there are several other reasons you should wait to sell your RV in the fall.

1. End of the Camping Season

Fall is a sad time of year for many RV owners as it marks the end of camping season for most of the country. As a result, very few people want to purchase a camper, since they won’t use it for several months. Instead of paying campground reservations, they might pay several hundred dollars in storage fees before taking it out for the first time.

While this isn’t always the case, we see it often. The demand for campers drops substantially across the board. Many dealerships reduce their sales teams because of decreasing foot traffic into their lots and showrooms. Getting a new or used trailer isn’t exciting if you can’t take it camping immediately.

Autumn camping in Door County, Wisconsin
Peak RVing season is in the summer, so less people are interested in purchasing a rig in the fall.

2. Others Are Trying to Off-Load to Avoid Having to Store

Unfortunately, many owners try to sell their campers at the end of the camping season. Whether they’re calling it quits or buying another model in the spring, many don’t want to pay to store a camper they’re not using.

This means you may be among many trying to sell their camper privately. Unless your unit has distinct features or upgrades, it may get less attention from potential buyers. If they do notice, they’ll likely spend more time comparing it to other models they’re considering. If you’re hoping for a quick sale, it’ll be less likely this time of year.

3. Oversaturated Market From Dealers

In addition to private sales, many RV dealerships want to unload their inventory. This creates an oversaturated market where you compete against dealers offering financing and other incentives you can’t.

An over-saturated market is a buyer’s market. With so many options, it forces you to price your listing very competitively. If you don’t have much wiggle room on your price, having a lot of competition certainly won’t help. The further into the season, the more competitive it can get. Dealerships can get very generous to make room for the next round of camper models.

Many RV dealerships will be unloading their inventory in the autumn, making for stiff competition.

4. Holidays Are Coming

The start of fall is typically September 22 or 23, so there are less than 100 days left until Christmas and other festive holidays. With presents to buy and last-minute tax donations to make, many people curb their spending as much as possible. Buying a camper may be far from the top of their list of priorities.

5. Manufacturers Are Releasing Next Year’s Models

This is when many RV manufacturers release their new models. This means that your RV just got another year older. Each time your camper turns another year older, it becomes less appealing to potential buyers.

In addition to being newly constructed, new models often come with features that older models can only dream of possessing. For example, many newer models have solar panels, upgraded batteries, and technologies to make enjoying your rig easier. Unless there’s a significant price difference, many consumers will wait to see what these new models offer.

Instead of selling your RV this fall, wait until next spring to put it up for sale.

When Is the Best Time to Sell an RV?

Generally, the best time to sell an RV is spring and early summer. Those who want to get a camper for the upcoming camping season are actively shopping at that time. With more demand, you’ll likely get top-dollar for your RV. The longer your camper sits on the market, you’ll want to consider reducing the price to attract more potential buyers.

Pro Tip: Want to sell your rig quickly? Find out What Is the Fastest Way to Sell an RV?

Need to Sell in the Fall? Here’s How 

While it may not be ideal, selling your RV in the fall is possible. To give yourself the best shot, the first thing you’ll want to do is to give it a good cleaning. You’ll want to get it looking as good as possible. Additionally, complete any maintenance that may be necessary. Cleaning and maintenance are the last things new owners want to do.

Another thing to consider is that you’ll want to lower your expectations regarding your asking price. Be realistic about what your rig is worth, and know that you won’t likely get your full asking price. Additionally, don’t be offended by low-ball offers. Potential buyers will want to score a deal, especially if they won’t use the RV for several months.

When creating your listing, take your time and list any upgrades, modifications, and unique features for your unit. Take many pictures and use plenty of light. You don’t want the interior to look dark and dungeon-like.

Fall Is the Time for Buying, Not Selling

Selling an RV can be an emotional experience, especially if you have years of memories with your family. Unfortunately, fall is the time to be a buyer, not a seller. While it may take longer and you may get less than you hoped, completing a transaction in the fall is still possible. If you plan to say goodbye to your rig soon, we wish you the best of luck.

Are you looking to buy or sell an RV this fall? Tell us in the comments!

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About Mortons on the Move

Tom & Caitlin Morton of Mortons on the Move gave up the stationary life for one where they are constantly on the move. They are full-time travelers, television hosts, and digital media producers.
They left their jobs, sold their house and possessions, and hit the road in September 2015 in their full-time “home on wheels”. Since then they have traveled the US, Canada, and even internationally by RV.
Now, they are Discovery Channel & PBS TV Co-stars of “Go North” on Amazon Prime Video, co-founders and instructors of RV Masterclass, and contributing authors for and an Arizona travel guide.

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