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Old 08-16-2013, 07:20 AM   #41
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And part of it is simply having the budget for new, I paid 10K for a 2009 side bath. I really didn't want to pay that much, and I was looking for one in the 6-7K range but just wasn't finding it. When I ran across mine I had to scrimp and save and tell the buyer I'd make a second payment, and make a huge financial transaction never even meeting the owner, nor seeing the camper. All of the things we are warned never to do.

I did my due diligence, and it worked and I got my 4 year old Scamp Standard SB for 10K which I think is a good price. It was missing the propane tank and battery, but the AC works, the fridge works on AC, and I am getting it slowly tested and cleaned.

10K was more than I wanted to pay by a lot, but still less than full price new from the factory.
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Old 08-16-2013, 08:26 AM   #42
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I would be very unkely to buy new. I would prefer a beat up egg with a solid frame. Or even one that needed frame work because I would want to galvanize the frame.

The reason for this is it is much easier to drill holes, grind out tabbing and start over, using the shell as your canvas to build your vision of a camper than to do the same with a new camper. I could be wrong, perhaps some builders sell empty shells for owners to finish. Even so it is probably smarter to get a cheap shell than pay big bucks for a new one. I like to change things and it is easier to guy something and start over than it is to modify it and work around problems.

How many campers have recliner's? Or space for that? Want a 47" TV? Wood stove? What if you want a taller or longer camper? Cut it in half, prop it up and glass it back together. It would be crazy to do that with a new camper.

The analogy would be buying an old Victorian house, gutting it, insulating it, and giving it a modern floor plan, insulation and appliances.
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Old 08-16-2013, 08:31 AM   #43
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Because we came into some found money, and, because when this past Spring I said, "Hey, let's go camping," and ...I got an (indignant) "forgetabout-it" (or words to that effect) reply from "dear one," I decided to sell our 16 ft Scamp. My beloved needed more space, required better conveniences. We ain't spring chickens no more. Ordered a 19 ft Escape. Will pick it up at the factory this Sep.

The big question was, what will that old '86 sell for? It had been abused, neglected and poorly repaired by the previous owner. Much hidden rot. I had wanted it bad enough to pay too much. It became a great fun project. I gutted it.

However now, becomes apparent my re-build solutions might not satisfy most current potential buyers. No sink, no water storage, no refrigerator, no air conditioner. It's 27 years old. I grudgingly had to accept the fact that it now needed some expensive upgrading, including a new axle, brakes, etc. More money!

Had hoped to put it up on eBay by June. Because of the man-yanna factor, it took all summer to get the Scamp ready. Finally, yesterday, the auction ended, and it is sold. Whatta ride. Over 5K page views and a couple hundred "watchers." There was initial heavy bidding, then a high bidder begged out, then several days of nada.

Despite heavy interest, only one person called and asked to come by to inspect before bidding. I checked, and way back in June many FB trailers sold. Did I miss the boat? I was one of only two eggs currently up on eBay. Began to worry would not break even, though all I wanted was getting my material costs back. Labor costs was free - for me, pure recreation.

To my mind there can be no way to predict what will happen on eBay. There are bidders who are naive, and them who are very smart and who know how to win an auction. When selling a trailer, the price sell it for, I think, depends on a fair and honest description, and many great pictures.
In any case, Hell of a ride, every time.
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Old 08-16-2013, 08:40 AM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Myron Leski View Post
I decided to sell our 16 ft Scamp.

The big question was, what will that old '86 sell for? It had been abused, neglected and poorly repaired by the previous owner. Much hidden rot. I had wanted it bad enough to pay too much. It became a great fun project. I gutted it.

However now, becomes apparent my re-build solutions might not satisfy most current potential buyers. No sink, no water storage, no refrigerator, no air conditioner. It's 27 years old. I grudgingly had to accept the fact that it now needed some expensive upgrading, including a new axle, brakes, etc. More money!

.
It is worth very little at this stage. People who want a blank canvas know that the cost to built a camper will be high. They don't want to pay a lot for something like this. I know because I've been inthat situation myself. You camper is worth at most a couple hundred dollars,maybe only $100.
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Old 08-16-2013, 09:03 AM   #45
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Ed, John and Conrad...all good thoughts and obviously you all did what makes you happy. For me, on this endeavor, buying new was the way to go. To go through the time and effort to modify as extensively, as some of you enjoy doing, would be like going to the dentist for me. Plus, I can spend that time making money to pay the difference between new and nice new. Mine will be a 2014 loaded with options (AC, TV, cable, shower, commode, awning, heat strip, extra lights and outlets in and out, 54" bed, and more). This winter we will be spending a month or two traveling Florida. Having my Scamp will save me from $1,000 to 2,000 over previous trips. We will be going to several football games throughout the sec this fall and the next couple of years, plus long weekend trips visiting historical sites, civil war battlefields, etc. In 3 years I can expect to have saved a minimum of $5,000 on our travels plus we can take the dog! My new, loaded, Scamp is about $13,800. I am confident that in 3 years (2016) I could sell it for $10,000...if not more, here in the South where they do not seem to exist! If I wanted to. This is a good return on investment for me plus, I don't have to sleep in anyone else's bed and my wife won't have to spray the mattress for bed bugs...lol! As you can see, different people have different needs and one mans pleasure is another's pain.
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Old 08-16-2013, 01:16 PM   #46
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Prime thing for me in the used market is usability in its current state. Followed by what is it going to take in terms of money and labor to get it into good shape.

If I can camp my way home (with DW) it would command a much better purchase price than if it's in too rough of shape to use "as-is. And that as my better half will tell you includes how it looks. To be honest if the windows "look" good and leak like a sieve it would probably still meet her criteria, after all I have to fix the leaks, she has to not be embarrassed to be seen getting out of it.

Going down on a scale that ends at gut and re-do or major replacement/repairs which I'm not willing to do generally. For myself the finished trailer must support the purchase price plus cost of renovation if I sell it afterwards. Rougher the trailer harder it is to know what total repairs are going to run. More discount to purchase price required to keep me interested.

If the fridge does not work the purchase price can't just be a matter of we took $400 off because you can buy a fridge for that amount. Hello! I have to find the right fridge and install it, possibly with some custom work to make it fit or hook up. Try more like $500 or $600 off the price it would be worth with a working fridge.

Don't want to find myself in a postion where I have lots into a trailer that I can't get back out of it. Probably why I would not tend to buy new. resale is less than purchase price. Besides if I can't keep expense of camper and camping below price of Holiday Inn guess where better half is going to book next "camping" trip



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Old 08-16-2013, 01:49 PM   #47
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Since I am not very skilled (nor inclined) in repairing and rebuilding, my feeling would be to look for something with only a few years' use. Maybe 1 to 5 years old, still almost like new, but the biggest depreciation hit has already taken place. But once it got to be more than 12-15 years old I'd probably sell it and buy something newer again, to avoid the likelihood of more substantial repairs that tend to come with age.

I feel the same way about motor vehicles; the two used vehicles I bought had over 100K miles and turned out to be money pits, so if I ever bought another used one it would likely be 'not very used'.
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Old 08-16-2013, 01:57 PM   #48
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Most people sell items because they are no longer useful or they want the liquidity, it always best to acquire the second type.
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Old 08-16-2013, 02:02 PM   #49
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"You camper is worth at most a couple hundred dollars,maybe only $100."

?? Holy Cow, Night Sailer, either I am the flat luckiest guy on earth, or done something way-out right.

A hundred bucks, eh? Note my avatar pix.... that Scamp just sold on eBay for 5K plus. Ohh, OK, guess I failed to mention that I actually did a pretty good job of repair and rebuild. It was ready for it's close-up.

To paraphrase Casey Stengel, "...you can look it up."
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Old 08-16-2013, 09:34 PM   #50
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Well, if we were considering getting a "new to us" trailer and were looking at new vs. gently used (say, something 5 years old or less), I'd want either a pretty hefty discount or some major added on options or else I'd just want to get the new trailer. When you start looking at older trailers I think it gets more complicated. You spend less, but take on more risk. And it pays to be handy! And to kinda like old stuff to begin with!

The thing is, we've yet to see something new that we like better than our beloved 26 year old Bigfoot. We like its layout and its spaciousness and its big windows. It works for us, but of course everybody has their own list of "must haves" and some people would never be happy with a trailer this old. Sure, it would be nice to have more modern amenities like a bigger fridge and a microwave oven and a hot water heater that fires up at the push of a button and who knows what else, but everything comes with a price. We have less than half of what it would cost to buy a comparably sized new trailer invested in our old Bigfoot. And that's after fixing and/or improving a host of issues - a new hot water heater, new wheels and tires, two new Fantastic Fans, a new catalytic heater, fixing some plumbing leaks, having the propane lines tested, new propane tanks, installing a CO/propane detector, new cushions, new upholstery and new curtains (both DIY projects), new graphics, LED lights, etc., etc. It's still not as fancy as a new trailer, but it suits us.

One thing that I haven't seen addressed in this discussion is the concept of Opportunity Cost, sometimes defined as "The difference in return between a chosen investment and one that is necessarily passed up." or "The cost of an alternative that must be forgone in order to pursue a certain action. Put another way, the benefits you could have received by taking an alternative action."

Having never purchased a new trailer, I'm not familiar with the process, but I imagine that one way or another most people must have to finance their purchase either through the manufacturer or a bank? Or perhaps some people pay cash. Either way the money going into the trailer is no longer available for any other use whether that be an investment or something else. The "opportunity" to either make money off that money or to use it for something else is lost. In our case, we'd rather have less invested in the trailer and more available for other things than the other way around! And as Donna says, YMMV!
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Old 08-16-2013, 09:36 PM   #51
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Back in June there were a lot of eggs up on eBay, hence more competition. Should also add the buyer, who was the one who actually came to look it over before bidding, was local, had been looking hard for a few weeks but could find nothing that suited him, and had a personal deadline.

He spent well over an hour with me, told me specifically I satisfied all his questions and concerns. He had no interest in absent bells and whistles many would consider deal breakers. Serendipidy, I guess. Never undervalue; there will always be someone who knows value when they see it.

When he pushed me I told him, bid only what you can afford. If you don't win it there will always be another one.
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Old 08-16-2013, 09:58 PM   #52
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......
One thing that I haven't seen addressed in this discussion is the concept of Opportunity Cost, sometimes defined as "The difference in return between a chosen investment and one that is necessarily passed up." or "The cost of an alternative that must be forgone in order to pursue a certain action. Put another way, the benefits you could have received by taking an alternative action." .....
Very good point! Monthly payments are a steady opportunity loss. I do tend to mind less repairs and fixes I can do with cash out of pocket where I get to decide based on choice available at that time if I want to pursue this opportunity (fix/add to camper) or some other opportunity.

I also don't mind delayed gratification. I can buy some parts now, some later and as long as I'm making progress and can use the camper I don't mind.

Axle I'm getting ready to purchase and original purchase are the only money I drew out of saving to make. The rest has been out of disposable income where I made the choice that seemed best at the time.
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Old 08-16-2013, 11:12 PM   #53
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Kathy...all good points. In our case, we have the money to pay cash, we have our investments producing monthly income thus, this is disposable income, we don't want someone else's problems, we like a warranty, we want the options we choose to order vs ones someone else ordered or modified, we don't want something like 26 ft...we want something small, clean and new. We don't have time to fix up someone else's wear and tear. Resale value on a new one is very high...if you can find one. Different strokes for different folks!
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Old 08-17-2013, 05:04 AM   #54
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New vs. Used is a constant choice and in part depends upon your financial position. Fortunately most items on a small trailer are not shockingly expensive nor difficult to replace. If you have the time to improve the old it can be a solid choice and financially appropriate.

The most important part of new or used is 'using'. Sometimes we get involved with finding the right trailer not the finding the right road. It's obvious that people can and do have great times in multiple configurations and age trailers
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Old 08-17-2013, 05:23 AM   #55
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Another reality in buying new is that there's always additions and changes you will make so it's trully yours or to add functionality not on the 'option list'.

Used or new, 13 or 16 or even 26, they all share fiberglass and a method to get out and enjoy North America, the latter by far the most important.
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Old 08-17-2013, 07:35 AM   #56
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Its not what it costs to get into a trailer, it's what it costs to get out. If you purchase a trailer that's a couple of years old, you should have minimal maintenance issues, yet, after years of enjoyment, sell it for only a slight loss on what you originally paid for it. Interest rates on savings accounts are pitiful, the stock market is risky; why not put your investment where you will enjoy it?
Having said that, honda03842 hit the nail on the head:
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The most important part of new or used is 'using'. Sometimes we get involved with finding the right trailer not the finding the right road. It's obvious that people can and do have great times in multiple configurations and age trailers
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Old 08-17-2013, 08:23 AM   #57
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Cam A, those are good points. And I agree with Norm, the most important thing is to get out and use your trailer whether it be an oldie or brand new!

One thing about buying used is that it pays to be knowledgable. We've RV'd for a long time and this trailer is our 4th rig, so when we went shopping we had a pretty good idea of what to look for, what to avoid, etc. (although I wish we'd known about the "Trailer Weights in the Real World" thread before we bought our trailer!). We passed up a couple of other same size Bigfoots, one older and cheaper and one newer and more expensive, but in both cases it was obvious that the PO's had not taken good care of them so no matter what we could have gotten them for, we didn't want them.
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Old 08-17-2013, 10:27 AM   #58
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Well said Norm and I agree. I already have mods I am going to make. I am going to latch the fridge, per your help and install a 5" fence post under the back bumper to start.
CAM...when you get older, like me, you have to figure out ways to make your money produce safe income. Not easy in today's market, you are right!! With annuities, bond funds, various safe mutual funds, etc...about a 6% return is the outcome. This is a fun item for us to get my DW out to see much of North America, as Norm accurately states. My business travels afforded me the opportunity but my sweetie was busy working at home. Now we BOTH can play together. My blood pressure goes down just thinking about it
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Old 08-17-2013, 10:29 AM   #59
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Where are you getting a 6% return on your investment in todays market? Inquiring minds want to know.
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Old 08-17-2013, 10:32 AM   #60
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Well stated Kathy, another reason I needed to buy new. I'm learning so I needed a new one from a reputable company with a warranty. If all goes as hoped, in a couple of years we will trade 'up' to a larger model. I read the "trailer weights" piece and decided to make sure I was well under with my TV. I know my sweetie will be packing it up pretty good...already started, she is excited!
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