What to Look for in an RV Dealership

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It’s easy to overlook the importance of choosing an RV dealership. However, they can make or break the entire experience.

Just because they have a fancy facility or slick marketing doesn’t mean they’re the best. Unfortunately, finding a place to treat you right and give you a good deal isn’t always easy.

Today, we’ll look at the most important things to look for in an RV dealership.

Let’s get to it!

What to Look for in an RV Dealership

If you’re shopping for a new RV, visiting multiple dealerships during the process is a good idea. Doing so can give you the best view of what’s on the market and what you can expect to pay. 

However, you want to look for some signs that they’ll take care of you throughout the entire process.


When choosing an RV dealership, the company’s reputation is important. We’ve never purchased anything more than accessories from Camping World. However, it’s no secret that many in the RV community have strong feelings against them.

Hearing one or two people who have had a bad experience is one thing. Unfortunately, we regularly see posts online hating on Camping World and other big-name dealerships. If an establishment has a negative reputation, consider shopping elsewhere.

Screenshots of good reviews for an RV dealership called Sunshine RV in Arizona.

Knowledgeable Staff

The next thing you want to look for when choosing an RV dealership is a knowledgeable staff. Their employees should be able to provide answers to most general questions you have regarding the units they’re selling.

Additionally, they may need to look up some answers because they likely sell many different brands and models. Don’t read too much into this. 

Manufacturers use various materials and frequently make changes. We’d rather a salesperson say, “Let me check,” than give us inaccurate or wrong information.

However, you’ll need to know a thing or two to judge an individual’s knowledge. This will require that you familiarize yourself with RVs, how to use them, and how critical systems work. If not, telling when the salesperson isn’t honest about a camper will be challenging.

Pro Tip: You can get a better deal on your RV when you buy at the right time. These are the 5 Best Times to Buy an RV!

Customer Service

Unfortunately, when choosing an RV dealership, you won’t fully experience their customer service until you complete the transaction. Luckily, resources like Google and Yelp can make it easy to see how previous customers feel.

However, it’s important to remember that these are only one side of the story. Some customers have unreal expectations or need to allow the dealership to make a situation right. They’re not manufacturing the units and should only sometimes take the blame when things don’t work right.

Read through the positive and negative reviews and look for patterns for their customer service. You want to find a dealership that provides a consistent experience.

When making a significant purchase, you don’t want any surprises.

A customer service call center. Knowing what kind of customer service you will receive after buying an RV is critical  when choosing an RV dealership.

Location and Accessibility

The next thing to consider when choosing an RV dealership is its location and accessibility. If you rely on the dealership for maintenance and repairs, you want them close. 

New owners commonly haul their rigs back to the dealership after their first few trips. The service department will often address any issues discovered during these trips.

On the other hand, many handy individuals are comfortable doing DIY maintenance and repairs. If you’re one of them, you may have no problem shopping at a dealership hundreds of miles away or in another state.

It’s important to know that some RV service centers attached to dealerships won’t work on rigs they didn’t sell. This can make finding a shop for service or repairs even more challenging.

Product Range

We encourage anyone shopping for a new RV to tour various models before deciding. Doing so can allow you to taste what’s available and consider all your options. As a result, when choosing an RV dealership, it’s a good idea to find one with a comprehensive product range.

While this can be an essential quality, it’s not always the most important. If you’ve been able to narrow down your options to a specific brand or model, you don’t care about others.

When you’re first starting shopping, this can be more critical than when you get along in the process.

A map that says Lazydays RV showing all of the nation's top RV brands in a list.

Service and Maintenance

Unfortunately, service and maintenance are a standard part of owning an RV. Things break and malfunction from time to time. 

When choosing an RV dealership, knowing that they’ll be able to help you service or maintain your rig can be critical. If you’re new to owning a recreational vehicle, working on them can be intimidating.

This is another reason a local dealership is better than one far away. If you experience an issue or need a repair, you want it to be as easy as possible. Hitching up and hauling it hundreds of miles for a minor fix isn’t ideal.

Most RVs come with a limited time warranty, but they require you to take it back to the dealership you purchased your RV from to get work done.

Pro Tip: Read Why Does RV Warranty Work Take So Long? (And Tips To Speed Up The Process)

Financing Options

When choosing an RV dealership, the final thing to consider is their financing options. Some larger dealerships have deeper relationships with banks and financial institutions. As a result, they can offer better interest rates and incentives than smaller establishments.

If you’ll be financing your purchase, making that a part of the conversation when shopping is a good idea. It’s no secret that dealerships make considerable money on the financing side. As a result, they may be willing to cut you a deal.

Additionally, financing an RV can be challenging and requires better-than-average credit. As a result, shopping at a dealership with various financing options can help you get approved for a loan.

Pro Tip: Getting ready to purchase your RV? Read Important Facts To Know To Secure RV Financing!

RV Dealership Red Flags

When choosing an RV dealership, you must look for any red flags. These are qualities or characteristics that should send you running from any transaction. 

These include a lack of transparency, pushy sales tactics, and limited knowledge of the products they’re selling.

Additionally, we’ve heard of consumers getting far enough in the process that they wanted to hire a third-party inspector to examine the rig. However, the dealership denied their request, stating it was against policy.

In reality, they likely knew the inspector would discover issues they would need to fix, ultimately costing them money.

If you discover any of these types of red flags, run away quickly. Trust us, it’s better in the long run.

It can be challenging to walk away from what appears to be your dream camper. However, if they hide something, you’re likely avoiding a nightmare.

A Grand Design section at an RV show. You want to know a dealership's reputation when choosing an RV dealership.

What Should You Not Do When Choosing an RV Dealer?

When choosing an RV dealer, one of the biggest mistakes you can make is to rush the process. Sure, buying a new camper can be exciting.

However, most of us make poor decisions quickly or when we let our emotions take the lead. So, take your time and don’t rush it.

Additionally, many consumers neglect to do any research. They’ll shop at the most convenient location and not consider any others. 

However, you can save hundreds or thousands of dollars by expanding your search radius.

Finally, when choosing an RV dealer, pay attention to communication. How quickly they communicate with you during the process is essential. Anyone you interact with should conduct themselves professionally, including in written form.

Choosing a Good RV Dealership Makes All the Difference

As you can see, there are many things to consider when choosing an RV dealership. If you take your time and think through each step, you can make an informed decision. 

While it may be difficult, a quality sales team can walk you through the process. When you’re spending your hard-earned money, you deserve the red carpet treatment.

  1. Hi Jason & Rae, I’m Sue Bell with my husband Danny. We’ve been watching your videos since you began and have decided to go full time. We have narrowed our choices to a Grand Design front living or rear kitchen, or a Luxe front living. We will be purchasing this year as soon as we sell our home in NJ. My question is…how much is 2000 lbs of belongings??? Is it enough just to hold the essentials? I’ve asked a few people and no one seems to clearly know. We might have to go to another floor plan with a higher weight capacity. I’m so concerned because I need this rv to look and feel like a home, not a garage I’ve turned into a home. (And is the hitch weight included in this total?)

    We’ve never owned an rv before and have been “ looking” for 5 years now. We’ve been to many dealers and the Hershey shows during this time. We just flew down to see the Luxe units at the Tampa show. And…we are more confused now than we were in the beginning!

    You seem very happy and comfortable in your floor plan and we love ❤️ your honesty and humility in trying to help others learn and enjoy this lifestyle. I’m retiring the end of this month and Danny has just retired in January. So now, if we can just make a decision….

    Thank you for all the time and effort you have put into your blog and videos! We have learned so much and you two (& Carmen 😘) are one of our favorite rv stars!

    Thanks for reading, take care and enjoy!

    Sue Bell

    1. Thanks for watching and congrats on deciding to go full time! 2000 pounds is definitely enough to carry the essentials but it is still a limiting factor. We just get our rig weighed every 6 months at the Cat scales and purge if we are close to max. The upgrades of solar and batteries are what put us closer to the limit.

      We absolutely love our Grand Design floorplan and still have not found another we like more. The limited cargo carrying capacity is worth the trade-off for us to have the separation.

      I would recommend taking a trip to Elkhart and taking factory tours. Both Luxe and Grand Design are there so you can kill two birds with one stone and see the differences in how they are built since it is going to be a large purchase.

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