At Derby Motorhomes we have many years’ experience of counselling first-time motorhome buyers. Here we have condensed some of our top tips into a brief motorhome buying guide.
Think carefully about why you are buying one
There is no suggestion here that you should start to question your decision! This is more about being sure you understand what you expect to get out of your motorhome because that will tell you how you are going to use it.
That, in turn, will feed into your deliberations about the type of motorhome that is likely to be suitable for your needs. If you plan to use your motorhome regularly for long-distance trips around Europe and with a number of passengers aboard, it may incline you towards certain types of vehicle. By contrast, if you are planning to just use it occasionally in the UK over the summer months that might suggest a different approach.
Prepare your finances
Once you have a type of vehicle in mind, whether that is brand new or pre-used, you should start to get a reasonable understanding of the sort of price you may be paying.
It’s always advisable to be sure in advance just how you plan to finance your purchase. Apart from providing you with peace of mind, it also means you’ll be able to focus on driving a hard deal with the seller.
Don’t emotionally commit based on photos alone
All manufacturers understandably show their product in the very best light in their publicity material. Try to avoid losing your heart to a given motorhome based on that input alone.
There is absolutely no substitute for hard research on the models you are thinking about and at the same time, getting your hands on them for a test drive etc.
A motorhome that looks fantastic in an online photograph and presentation might feel completely different to you if you were inspecting it inside and driving in for an hour or two. So, keep an open mind at the outset.
Take expert advice
Buying a motorhome is not like buying a car. It is a specialist area and any motorhome buying guide should make the point clearly that, unless you have prior in-depth knowledge, you should take expert advice and guidance before deciding on a given vehicle.
Think about parking and storage when not in use
Remember that local laws and your insurance policy might prohibit you from permanently parking your motorhome on the public street when it is not in use.
Similarly, parking on your driveway or in your back garden might be an issue with neighbours.
There are often easy solutions to this type of challenge but be sure you have thought this one through in advance.
Don’t over-compromise on quality
Economy is always going to be a big issue for any buyer but cutting back on space or facilities in order to save perhaps a modest amount of money, might be something you’ll regret later on. Compromises may, of course, be necessary but go with your instinct where things such as fittings, furnishings and little luxuries are concerned.
Check your licence
The good news is that many motorhomes can be driven on a standard driving licence.
However, the position isn’t always entirely straightforward, as the weight of a motorhome plus the date you passed your test, might both have an effect on the type of vehicle you can drive on that standard licence.
It’s worth checking this in advance on the government’s website above.