Using Depreciation to Determine RV Values
Another tricky way of determining the price you should pay for a new RV, is by reversing the depreciation on the cost of a similar used RV.
You can reverse the depreciation of a used model (preferably one only a few years old) to get an estimate of what a new model should cost.
You can get the depreciation schedule from RVCG as mentioned above, or you can calculate it manually.
For example, assume that you have calculated a certain RV model that is a few years old should have 30% depreciation.
You find a used RV for $100,000, but you want to know what the fair market price is for a new model.
Take the used selling price and mark it up up by the depreciation percentage.
In this case you take the $100,000 sales price and divide it by the .70 (100%-30% depreciation) to arrive an acceptable fair market price for the new RV at $142,847.
There is a handy Excel spreadsheet to compare the depreciation of a USED RV to a NEW RV available for download here.
RV Values Guesstimation
If you find yourself out shopping for an RV, and begin negotiating without having previously done your homework on the fair market value of the model you are shopping for, there are a couple of key themes to keep in mind.
MSRP’s are commonly marked up by the dealer, in some cases as high as by 40% – depending on the model and brand.
As a buyer, if you assume that the ticket price is marked up a fair bit, you may decide to negotiate down to a smaller markup. Keep in mind though that most RV dealers wont dip much below 5-10% – even if their life depended on the sale!
Figuring Out the Worth of Your Used RV
The question “What is my RV worth?” will be top of mind when you are a seller trying to find a reasonable asking price for your RV.
If you’re a buyer you’ll want to know the other side of that question, “How much is this RV Worth?”
If buying from an individual this can be a challenging process.
If you are a seller who is trying to determine a selling price you need to look at a combination of the current market, current statistics, and the condition of your RV.
For a quick and easy answer, sellers can look at the National Automobile Dealers Association Guides, the NADA Guides, to determine their RV’s Fair Market Value (FMV).
While this is not always the most reliable method of determining a selling price, it is convenient and easy.
You could also use the RV Blue Book.
If you use the guides to help determine your asking price, focus on the “Low Retail” or “Used Wholesale”, instead of the higher numbers, which are often far less realistic.
The same would go for buying or selling a car if you are more familiar with that.