It’s true what they say, “Home isn’t a place. It’s a feeling.” This is especially true when it comes to living life on the road. As your home transitions from place to place, you want that comfortable, inviting, and peaceful feeling to remain constant. So, how can you ensure your house-on-wheels will provide you with a harmonious home no matter where you go? Investing in the best RV for your needs will do the trick.
However, finding that RV or knowing what to look for isn’t always the easiest task. Luckily, we have a few tips to help you narrow down your choices, so you wind up with a sound investment that will become your home-sweet-home.
1. Craftsmanship & durability
When it comes to shopping for an RV, it’s easy to feel like you’re experiencing double-vision. It’s also difficult to compare the craftsmanship and durability of an RV without living in it for years. There are some sure telltale signs of better longevity and craftsmanship you can look for, though.
Durability is in the details
Higher-grade finishes last much longer. Inexpensive carpets, countertops, and fixtures will need to be replaced much sooner than higher-grade options. This can add up over time and make your RV less enjoyable to be in after five to ten years pass.
Examine the details of the RV. It’s easy to get swept away in the excitement of a fancy RV, however, be sure that all the elements have been finished with quality in mind.
Quality craftsmanship will stand the test.
A well-thought-out layout in an RV is worth its weight in gold. The best RVs are designed by people that care about their users and envision how the space will be used. As you shop for RVs, take the time to picture your day-to-day in the space. Did the maker provide enough storage?
Fiberglass vs stick-built body
Understanding the benefits of fiberglass versus stick built can also be tricky. Fiberglass is a better option if you’re aiming for durability and longevity.
Fiberglass is truly an ideal material for RV construction. Fiberglass RVs can be built with fewer seams. This seam-free construction prevents water intrusion and provides a highly durable body that flexes as a whole rather than only at tension points. Fiberglass is also extremely strong.
Stick-built trailers are constructed in several panels and over time, these panels tend to take a lot of wear and tear from travels at high speeds. As you’re traveling, your trailer will experience the force of acceleration along with drag as air travels over the exterior. Add in potholes, bumps, and hard braking, and stick-built trailers start to come undone at their seams. This is because each panel flexes individually, unlike a fiberglass trailer that responds to wind, bumps, and acceleration by bending then returning to its original form and strength.
Wood also does not contend well with water. As seams weaken, water can seep in and rot. Fiberglass retains a water-tight hold, and repairs are as easy as some new fiberglass and a fresh gel coat.
As far as longevity goes, you can anticipate a fiberglass Escape trailer will last your lifetime.
2. Personalization is a HUGE plus
When you buy an RV, you are dropping a pretty penny on your dream home on wheels, so you want to get what you want and need. Personalization ensures your RV reflects your tastes and has the functionality you need.
Ultimately, you want your RV to be a sanctuary on your adventures. You don’t want to be reminded every evening of features you wish you had or didn’t have.
For example, carpet may not be the best choice for dog owners. (Trust us when we say that vacuuming on the road is not a fun priority). If you buy a pre-built RV from a major retailer, you may not have the option of laminate or linoleum.
If you’re looking to travel the country, you may also want to consider personalization options like solar panels.
3. Consider resale value
While it’s nice to think you may have your RV forever, it’s unlikely. Many RVers tend to want to upgrade or downsize after a few years. Additionally, an RV is a major investment. This makes it a must to research your potential RV’s resale value.
When researching potential RVs’ resale value, you may find that some sizes, styles, and features are much more in-demand. Because of their durability, you will find that fiberglass travel trailers have excellent resale value. And because fiberglass trailers continue to become more and more popular, their resale value continues to grow.
4. Research the manufacturer’s reputation
Just like cars, trucks, and SUVs, differing RV companies have varying reputations. You wouldn’t walk into a dealership and drive off without looking into a new car, would you? The same is true when it comes to your next RV.
To begin your research, read RV owner forums or join Facebook groups. Note how much maintenance owners discuss and their attitudes in response to the maintenance. Yes, there are companies that are known for making lemons that wind up being a never-ending list of to-dos and stress.
Often, companies with the best reputations have waitlists–quality takes time, after all. If you’re considering upgrading to an Escape Trailer, you will want to get on the waitlist and put down your deposit, now.
5. Transparency: quality you can see
In the RV industry, it can be difficult to find a company that is willing to be completely transparent. However, we believe if you stand behind your process and prices, there’s nothing to hide.
How can you tell if an RV company has your best interests in mind and is being completely forthcoming? They will offer:
Non-commission sales: Commissions give salespeople an incentive to encourage RV shoppers to buy before they’re 100% informed and ready. Remember that there is no reason to rush into a purchase, nor should you feel pressure to make a decision without time to think it over.
Educating versus “selling”: When you find the right RV, you shouldn’t need to be sold to. Instead, honest companies with high-quality recreational vehicles are happy to teach you about their offerings.
Photos and answers: When a company is proud of its RV, they will happily answer any questions you may have about the building process of their RVs. They will also send you updates and photos as your RV is being built.
6.Customer-centric values matter
Just as transparency is a sign of a company you trust, customer-centric values are also a dead giveaway. As you research your potential RV manufacturer, read reviews related to their customer service. Do owners often express frustration or feel they drove off the lot without support? If so—steer clear. Instead, look for companies that will:
- Provide you support beyond your purchase–with lifetime support
- Honor a warranty
- Have customer service representatives that know their products and are happy to chat
There’s no place like home in the right RV
When you purchase your RV, you want to feel confident in your decision. When shopping for your next RV, be sure you receive the best service, value, and transparency throughout the process. Buy from a company you can trust and drive into your next adventure knowing you made the best decision.
Looking for more tips on how to purchase an RV? Check out the Harvest Hosts Beginners Guide to RVing – whether you’re new to RVing, or have had your hand on the wheel for a while, there’s always something new to learn.
Since 1993 (officially Escape in 2002), Escape has been building trailers with a passion to create the best possible fiberglass trailer on the market. Escape builds high-quality, lightweight fiberglass RV trailers designed to be practical, elegant, and affordable. Escape manufactures and sells direct to consumer, allowing for collaboration, customization, and extensive personalization in the trailer building process. Contrary to the traditional dealer approach, Escape has taken a customer-centric approach, earning a very loyal customer base.
Want to learn more about Escape Trailer? Check out why we’re considered one of the most trusted RV companies in North America.
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