Purchasing a Used RV: Benefits from rentals RVs are easier to finance and they have good warranties

Purchasing a Used RV: Benefits from rentals RVs are easier to finance and they have good warranties

Purchasing a Recreational Vehicle from a rental fleet is an excellent alternative, costing only a fraction of buying a new RV. El Monte RV and Cruise America are two of the most popular national RV companies to offer top savings on their expiring rentals. I’ve listed the top 5 reasons you should consider when buying an RV from a rental fleet.

One year warranty

The benefit of having a warranty is good assurance when purchasing a used RV.  El Monte Warranty is a real warranty back by El Monte RV, not an “extended service contract” with lots of loopholes. El Monte provides all there RVs with 12 months on the drive train and 30 days on appliances. The RV inspection and pre-sale check-up are really comprehensive. There RV inspection is much better than most RV dealers will do, even for a new one. Most RV dealers do not offer powertrain warranty’s and if they do, you have to deal with a bogus third-party organization with many obstacles that make it hard to present a claim. If I had to do it all over, I would opt for a third party RV inspection that included fluid analysis. A fluid analysis would provide more assurance since the RV has a lot of miles.

Easier financing

Financing for RVs less than five years old is easier to obtain. Most banks will not finance an RV over five years old. Typically rates are higher and terms are much more rigid when you come across a bank that will finance an RV older than five years. Banks see the risk with older RVs. Banks recognize that  RVs that are older represent higher maintenance cost, lower reliability and warranties are not always available. RVs sold by rentals companies is much newer.RV rental fleets will start to sell their fleet once the vehicle reaches two years old. The enhanced mileage reduces the price and that also makes it easier to finance. The age of the RV coupled with the chassis warranty and reduced-price provides an easier path for financing with a much more friendly rate.

Newer RVs at Wholesale prices

The industry average for miles driven is 5000 per year. The typical mileage for an RV that is three years old is 15k to 25k. El Monte RV rental will start to turn over there fleet at the two to three-year mark with mileage ranging from 60 to 100k. For example, a 2016 Coachmen Leprechaun with low miles will cost around $69000 at PPL motorhomes, however, the same RV at El Monte RV rental will cost $45000. Most people would be cautious of the miles but most people do not realize that these Ford chassis are heavy duty and are designed for high mileage. I recall a time I was riding in an airport shuttle van at the Albuquerque airport. The vans utilize the same Ford Chassis and engines used in  90% of all production gas RVs produced. I was amazed to see the airport shuttles with well over 300k miles and the driver told me that the vans are used 24hrs a day and are rarely turned off. So when you purchase an RV rental you’re getting a late model RV at wholesale prices due to hi mileage.

Detailed maintenance records

RV rental companies offer meticulous maintenance records. Maintenance records are very important. Vehicle and RV manufacture provide timelines on suggested maintenance for the chassis and RV.  Yearly maintenance for RV items such as the water heater and the roof is crucial for keeping your RV in tip-top shape.  The major RV rental companies do a great job chronicling chassis and RV maintenance items. I purchased a 2014 Fourwinds class c RV with 78 thousand miles. I received a stack of pages detailing every maintenance item you could imagine. The report included tire and oil changes and all other related maintenance items. I purchased the RV comfortable that I had a good idea of what I was purchasing.

Your not buying a rundown old rental RV

I often wondered if the bed or even the RV sofa was used by 100s of renters, so I asked. The maintenance manager was very candid and took me on a tour of their shop. He showed me an RV that they were retiring from service. This unit was in bad shape. Seats were worn fridge was broken among many other things. The shop basically replaced everything in the RV. Their shop was equipped to change out everything all the way down to the window valances. I was impressed.


Buying a used RV rental is not for everyone. If you are new to the RVing with little maintenance ability and low on cash a used RV from one of the two major rental fleets may be the best thing to ease you into the RV ownership. My first RV was purchased from El Monte RV and I literally had no issues with it.   The RV was purchased with 90,000 miles and I sold it with 140,000 miles trouble free. The only challenge you might face is the mental hurdle you may have when purchasing an RV with high mileage.

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