In this article, we will analyse the following question: Is a camper van a good investment? We will discuss the pros and cons of investing in a new versus an old camper van. We will also give you a few tips on reselling your camper van for the best price.
Is a camper van a good investment?
When investing in a camper van, there are two factors that can affect whether it is a good or a bad investment.
- You invest a huge amount of money in something that you will only use a few times a year. However, this only applies if you are not living there full time, but it is still something to consider. You will also benefit from a significant price reduction if you purchase a used motorhome.
- If you maintain your camper van properly, you can resell it for a decent sum. Renovations and modernization go a long way in attracting the attention of potential buyers.
Truth be told, camper vans can be a great investment as well as a money pit. The predominant factor is the purchase of a new or used motorhome.
Invest in a new or used camper van?
When it comes to camper vans, buying new or used vehicles is one of the biggest debates.
Used vehicles can quickly break down or require repairs. But on the other hand, it is quite possible to find the rare pearl especially if you buy a motorhome from a private seller.
Below is a list of the pros and cons of buying new and used motorhomes.
Pros of buying a new camper van
Investing in a brand new camper van means no one else has driven it. It is good to know that you are the first person to use the shower, toilet, refrigerator, microwave, bed and other amenities.
As we all know, new vehicles have fewer problems than used vehicles. You won’t have to make repairs for a while.
Investing in a new motorhome also gives you the possibility of customizing it with optional equipment.
Cons of buying a new camper van
The most obvious downside is the price. The minimum budget for a new 4-seater camper van is $60,000. If you decide to add options or customize the equipment, the cost can quickly climb.
In addition, a new motorhome quickly loses its value. This is called liability, after many years the value of the motorhome will be zero anyway.
Unlike real estate, which is considered an asset, and which will allow you to make money on a daily basis, but also on resale.
Benefits of investing in a used camper van
When you buy a used camper van, you won’t even have to spend 75% of the original value in most cases. Wait a few years until all the new models are out and buy a vehicle that is between 3 and 5 years old.
As long as you maintain it properly, you will be able to travel in a used motorhome without much hassle.
The resale value of a used motorhome is much closer to the purchase price. For example, for a motorhome worth $60,000, you can hope to sell it for around $50,000.
Disadvantages of buying a used camper van
You never know how the motorhome has been maintained, whether inside or under the hood.
Old campers tend to look a bit dated.
Some people find it attractive, others see it as a barrier. This older style may or may not be a drawback for you, but it’s worth mentioning.
Rent your campervan to pay your monthly instalments
If you don’t use your motorhome all year round, renting it to individuals can help you cover your monthly loan payments and amortize your investment.
Concretely, here is what the rental of your motorhome can bring you per year.
Let’s assume that the loan costs you $400 / month – or $4,800 / year. On average, the maintenance costs amount to 1000 $/ year.
Renting your motorhome for a week can earn you an average of $650.
To make your investment profitable, you must therefore rent your motorhome for at least 9 weeks a year so that the financing of your motorhome is fully covered by the income generated by the rental. This is called self-financing.
Of course, if you rent your motorhome for longer you can even generate a profit.
Get the best price on the resale of your camper van
A financial investment is only a wise decision if you can recoup some, all or more of your initial investment. As with everything, reselling your motorhome properly is a priority.
A motorhome is quite difficult to sell, especially if you decide to sell it yourself by placing a classified ad. However, if you are patient, you can get a good price in due time.
Here are some tips for making a profit when reselling your motorhome:
- Keep the maintenance log up to date. Keep paper records of all your repairs, maintenance procedures and renovations that you have made to the vehicle. When selling it, you can justify your price by what you have achieved on the motorhome.
- Be honest about any issues with the motorhome. If you don’t mention that the awning is torn or the bed frame has a crack, the potential buyer will spot it and feel cheated. He might even wonder if you have hidden additional issues as well. Always be honest when selling, this will increase your chances of selling quickly.
- If you can, try to sell the vehicle before it reaches 100,000 kilometres. People are much more likely to buy a motorhome without bargaining when there are five digits on the odometer rather than six.
- Finally, be sure to clean the interior and exterior of the vehicle, and remember to fill the gas tank before the potential buyer arrives. These little things make all the difference and show you care about the details. The buyer will feel like buying from someone who takes good care of their vehicle.
The bottom line
Overall, camper vans are a good investment if you can afford to maintain them properly. You can rent it out to cover your maintenance costs or even self-finance when you are not using it and enjoy it for a long time for your family vacation.
Do you agree? Let us know what you think!
FAQ on Is a camper van a good investment?
When is the best time to buy a camper?
The best time to buy a camper is at the end of the tourist season and during clearance periods. This is the time when the supply is surplus and buyers have a wide choice of models and brands. For used vehicles, it is easier to negotiate the selling price
What budget for a first motorhome?
More generally, a good new integral motorhome with good equipment will have a price set between 60,000 and 100,000 dollars.
What are the disadvantages of a camper?
On the downside, living in a small space means that there is little privacy, and hello dirt! In motorhomes, the pace is generally less. We delay more on the journey and we also lose a lot of time for maintenance and daily tasks (emptying, cooking, cleaning, etc.)
What is the most reliable brand of a motorhome?
The Adria motorhome is robust and reliable. Its products can easily be adapted to your needs, which is why the brand is number 1 in the market in Sweden. Choosing an Adria motorhome, one of the oldest brands in the world means benefiting from unique know-how and a very good quality/price ratio.
What is the best small motorhome?
The best small motorhomes are Wingamm Micros, Laika Ecovip 305, Hymer Van 314.