Veteran RV sales manager offers insider tips to save big on an RV
Everyone about to buy an RV should read this book!
"If a buyer knows exactly how a dealer makes his money, then he will know how much to offer, and what pitfalls to avoid," writes the author.
By Chuck Woodbury, editor
RVing is fun. Buying an RV is not. Veteran RV salesman and now sales manager Bob Randall knows this. Healso knows that a lot of buyers pay way too much for what they could have purchased for a whole lot less.
And so he has written a book: "The RV Buyers Survival Guide: How To Survive and Profit Through the Buying Experience." In it, he reveals what you will not find in any other RV advice book that I know of, and that is: how does a dealer make his profit? How much does he mark up each RV? What reasonable offer will he not refuse?
"The trouble is and I've seen this hundreds of times a couple decide they want a trailer or motorhome," Randall explains. "They envision themselves out on the road, camping in a beautiful campground, sitting by the campfire, enjoying the freedom of RVing. But what happens is they get so consumed with this wonderful dream that they just don't take the time to prepare themselves for making an intelligent purchase."
And that, says Randall, can spell disaster. Not only will this dreamy-eyed couple likely pay too much for the vehicle, but in doing so, they may set themselves up for big trouble down the road when it comes time to trade it in. "In the business, we say that customers like this are 'buried,'" he explains. "They owe more on their RV than what it's worth."
Randall explains the simple way to avoid this all-too-common trap.
But the most important thing he reveals is how dealers make their profit , both on the "front end" which is what they make on the actual sale and the "back end," where they can earn even more money through financing, insurance and other add ons.
"If a buyer knows exactly how a dealer makes his money, then he will know how much to offer, and what pitfalls to avoid," he says.
In this concise, but important book, Randall outlines the specific ways a dealer earns his profit. He furnishes exact percentages. He shows how much leeway a dealer has to work with on different types of RVs, from folding camping trailers to high-end diesel motor coaches. He explains why a first-time buyer can have an advantage buying one with a trade in. And he offers advice to those buyers WITH a trade in. Is it better to sell their old rig themselves or use it as a trade? It's not as simple a choice as it may seem, and Randall explains why.
The process is of buying an RV is not rocket science. But there are definite "do's" and "don'ts" that can make a huge difference in how much a buyer pays for an RV, and Randall spells them out. To me, buying this book should be an absolute no brainer decision for anyone who is about to walk onto an RV lot to plop down a good chunk of money . They WILL, with rare exception, save thousands of dollars simply by knowing the secrets an insider like Randall is willing to share. Randall has no beef with RV dealers, he just has an issue with customers who get shortchanged. He wrote the book to help these people.
So, maybe you're planning to visit your local dealer next weekend. And maybe when you get there you'll find the RV of your dream with a price tag, of say. . . $60,000. How much should you offer the dealer $55,000? $50,000? $45,000? More? Less? Randall tells you point blank what a dealer needs to make on a sale, and what he's most often willing to accept as an offer. It's probably a whole lot less than you think!
As the editor of this and other web sites about RVing, I have seen a lot of books about "How To Buy an RV." But none has been written from someone inside an RV dealership. No other book on the market today addresses the basic fear of most RV buyers of being "taken" of paying much more than the dealer would have accepted. I know that if I had read this book before I bought my last motorhome, I would have easily saved $3,000 to $5,000 no question about it. And I have believed for years that I got a great deal because I saved a few thousand dollars off the sticker price.
Randall sells his book for $23.95 in its printed form and $17.95 for a PDF eBook (which you can be reading in minutes after placing your order). To me, the price of this book is too low, and I told Randall so in a phone conversation. "You're saving people a lot money," I said. But he explained that he's comfortable with the price as is.
If you plan to buy an RV, you MUST read this book first. The chapter "How the MSPR (Manufacturer's Suggest Retail Price) is Figured," is worth the price of the book alone.
Order the printed book for $23.95.
Order the PDF eBook for $17.90.
This book is almost never available in bookstores. We came across it by accident. But after reading it and recognizing its extreme value, I arranged with Randall to sell it through this website for RVers, both those who are brand new to RVing as well as veterans ready for another purchase.
Readers' comments about this book
"I just had to write to tell you about my experience with your book! I read it twice and went directly to the dealer that had the 5th wheel I was interested in buying. After loading up on options, I calculated both his and my price and was prepared to make an offer. Along the way, I had dropped some hint words that I picked up from your book and the dealer seemed to know I was knowledgeable in what I was doing. To my surprise, he came back to me with a bid only $75 higher than I would have offered. I signed right then and there. Your book saved me $8,000 and the wisdom of what to look for in a dealer has made me confident that I have done so. Thank you."
"We just finished reading the survival guide and our eyes have truly been opened to the realities of buying an RV. There is
"Not only did I buy the guide, I used it and walked into the dealership with confidence, said all the "right things" as you instructed, and walked away the proud owner of a 2001 Damon Intruder with 8000 miles on it for $69000! I feel like I did well since they were asking $79,900. Its amazing how they did everything just like the book said. It was almost like a game for me to play and watch them respond right on cue! Thanks so much, I can truly say the book was money well spent!"
"Today, we looked at many units and had just about given up, but finally an Itasca seemed to fit the bill. So we purchased it. . . . The one piece of advice I found in your book was to argue the price and I did. I remembered your formula and I worked from that and fought for a larger price reduction. Yes, we did get it. I am very proud of me today, but that is only thanks to you. I would not usually have the nerve to fight.
"This book helped us to stay in control during the negotiations for our new Class A motorhome. We feel that we negotiated a fair price for the coach and it was in line with the what the book stated about wholesale vs. retail price of a coach. Prior to purchasing this book we were involved in a deal that went south and was a disaster. We had a hard time getting our down payment back when they could not deliver. This time as we entered into negotiations, we felt confident and entered on our terms."
"I wanted to let you know how useful your book was. It gave me the information and I ended up paying 12% over dealer cost. Your book took all of the anxiety out of the negotiation process and I ended up with a fair transaction for all parties. Many Thanks."
"We saved a little over $10,000; the dealer made $3,000 for a phone call to the factory rep. He is happy. We are happy. A lot of our happiness comes from reading your book."
"This guide. . . explains the ins and outs of the industry, the best time to buy, and finally the purchasing process, where you can save thousands of dollars. We found this guide very easy to follow and when my wife and I applied his step by step instructions, by the time negotiations were over we had saved thousands of dollars! Bob even taught us how to receive more thousands in the value of our trade. It was a great feeling knowing we had the confidence to walk into the sales office being one-up on the dealer and their sales staff. "
"We really want to thank you. We pick up our new RV tomorrow. We got a Class C Gulfstream 2002 Conquest Sport Model 6316S RV Motor Home. We got 21% off the MSRP. Believe me we were not savvy when it came to negotiating before reading the book. We were not savvy to anything about buying big ticket items before reading your book. We each read the RV Buyers Survival Guide twice. We took notes before going to the dealer. Instead of the buying process being a nightmare, it was a dream. I have written down the few things that need to be corrected before we pick it up tomorrow and have made it clear that we will not sign the loan papers until all is as it should be."
"I am very pleased with the guide, and would have paid more for it, since it will probably save me much more when I am in the process of buying a travel trailer. Yes,the print size is excellent, especially for the many folks who are senior citizens and need a slightly larger print size. I would highly recommend the guide to anyone who is thinking of becoming an RV owner."
"This publication provides a good overview of the choices and decisions to be made in purchasing any size RV. I found it especially helpful when it came time to negotiate a deal on a new RV. Bob gives details on typical dealer markups and lets you know how to figure a fair price. He also gives step by step advice on how to negotiate with the dealer. I felt much more confident in my negotiations and knew I walked out with a good deal. This book can save you lots of grief and money!"
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