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Old 03-22-2016, 09:05 PM   #1
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Default Pricing disparity on new FFs

So I'm looking at buying a new 2015/16 233RBS. I had a very informative chat with a sales guy a Cruiser RV about options and pricing etc which was prompted by my not understanding why there is such a massive pricing disparity in new 2015-16 233RBSs. These things are advertised on RVTrader from about $19k to $40k.

The sales guy said the recommend retail price for the 2016 model is currently just under $25,000 before options are added. He then explained that there are only five optional extras that add cost to the purchase price, namely: 32 TV, bumper grill, rear view camera, upgraded a/c and electric leveling jack system. And then he said that those options are all pretty cheap (hundreds rather than thousands). When I asked him why dealers advertise them for such vastly different prices he said that dealers are free to charge whatever they like for them.

So, my question is two-fold: First, do we know why there is such a different advertised price range, especially when it's so easy these days to compare prices in your home state and nationally? Then secondly, what would be a good price for my new 233RBS if the MSRP is $25k? Since there are some advertised for $19k I would have thought that a savvy buyer shouldn't pay more than that? Unless, of course, the dealers advertising at those prices are unscrupulous and are actually selling TTs they know are in some way faulty and just want to shift them?

Any ideas greatly appreciated!

Cheers
Simon
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Old 03-22-2016, 10:42 PM   #2
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Some places are/advertise as wholesale lots. The get the unit in and sell it without checking any of the systems ... or so I've been told. Since they do zero 'dealer prep work' they can afford sell at a lower price.

Plus they work on volume for a bigger factory discount or bonus at years end ... or so I've been told.
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Old 03-23-2016, 09:58 AM   #3
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When I bought mine in the fall of 2011, I simply shopped online and bought from the lowest price seller. Their dealer level "warranty" means essentially nothing to me. If you think factory level work is bad, wait 'til you see some of the "repair work" ( I use that phrase loosely ) done at dealer level. Ugh. I'd rather fix things myself, so I know how it's done ( correctly ).
Local dealers love to use scare tactics to try to get you to buy from them.

Having said all that, I do understand that not every RV buyer has a shop full of tools and the desire to use them. So they may be stuck with "dealer service".
I really enjoy working on things though.
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Old 03-23-2016, 10:33 AM   #4
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Thanks guys. If I buy it out of state then I'll have an independent inspection performed on it, but if I buy it locally then I'll do the inspection myself, so any dealer inspection/prep isn't really a factor for me, especially on a new one like this.

GMW - When you bought yours did you end up getting a discount on the advertised price? Or do the dealers tend to stick to their guns when they're already the lowest advertised price around?

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Old 03-23-2016, 10:45 AM   #5
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When I bought mine, the deal I got was $3800 below the best price I could find locally. I had to drive 600 miles to get it.
If you are buying new, I'm not sure what you expect to find by having an independent inspection done ? What would be the point ?

I know, I know !!!! ..... a LOT of people come on the forums and say things like, "make the dealer fix it before delivery !" As a concept, that is reasonable. In practice, you may have these "repairs" done by the lowest entry level shop person there at the dealer. In other words....they may "fix" the issues with some scotch tape and super glue. I'd rather they leave things alone, so I can fix them correctly. But I seem to be the lone ranger in this concept !

When I went to pick up my trailer, I even asked the salesman to cut the "walk-thru" short. I wanted to get on the road back home. I can figure out on my own how to operate a water heater or how to hook up a fresh water hose. ...just 'sayin.....
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Old 03-23-2016, 11:30 AM   #6
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The reason for the inspection on a new one that I'm too far away from to inspect myself would be to make sure I'm not buying a Friday trailer that came out of the factory funky - particularly roof/water leaks. Like you, I'd likely do any repairs myself but I'd want to avoid anything that is truly lemon-like from the get-go given that state lemon laws and buy-backs don't apply to TTs.
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Old 03-23-2016, 12:25 PM   #7
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I'm not going to say your approach is wrong here, but let me play devil's advocate.

You're going to pay someone, that you don't know, that you have no idea what their qualifications are, to go and inspect a brand new product ? If this inspector rejects the trailer, then you are out the inspection fee. If the inspector approves the trailer, you pay the fee and go buy it. Suppose something goes wrong ? Do you have any recourse back to the inspector ? Not likely.
This inspector really has no skin in the game. All he is going to want to do is easily pocket some of your money.

Now then, next issue: if the trailer ( or any product for that matter ) is a "lemon", are we going to be able to determine that when it's new ? My guess is, that's unlikely. We only find out we have a defective unit after we have used it for some period of time, which obviously means what we have to do is first purchase it, then proceed to use it in the real world.

If buying something used, I can certainly see the value in a careful pre-buy inspection, because something that has been used for a few years and not maintained correctly is likely to have water or other damage. Once it's used, the faults are more easily seen.

....just my thoughts on it.

I would suggest, don't overthink it. It's really just a simple little house built on a couple of simple axles and a simple frame. Operative words there are...."simple". These things ain't the space shuttle.
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Old 03-23-2016, 12:27 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnimalHungry View Post
The reason for the inspection on a new one that I'm too far away from to inspect myself would be to make sure I'm not buying a Friday trailer that came out of the factory funky - particularly roof/water leaks. Like you, I'd likely do any repairs myself but I'd want to avoid anything that is truly lemon-like from the get-go given that state lemon laws and buy-backs don't apply to TTs.
Good answer. Also, some trailers sit on lots for a long time. That can effect the tires and other areas. The tires do have the week and year of manufacture on them. When we picked up our tiny used trailer, the technician pointed to a brand new very large trailer that he had been working on for a long time fixing mistakes from the factory before the new owners could pull it home.
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Old 03-23-2016, 12:34 PM   #9
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I hear ya. I was hoping to be able to find a reputable RV inspector just like I'd find a reputable mechanic if I wanted an auto inspection who would give me an independent review of the TT. While these TTs are "new" many of them have been sitting around in the elements for months and I just want to be able to avoid the worst, most obvious issues if at all possible. I like the way they are simple, so I can inspect, repair and maintain it myself but spending $20k plus on something that leaks from the get-go isn't in my plan. And I really don't care about the few hundred bucks of inspection fee if it means I can avoid the very worst issues straight out of the gate.

Cheers
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Old 03-23-2016, 12:37 PM   #10
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My point is Simon, that when you buy your new trailer and bring it home, you're going to over it, under it and through it. For instance, you're going to open the galley cabinet, and you're going to check all the water line and drain connections. You're going to find some are probably a little bit loose. You're going to lay on driveway under the trailer and look up where the wall sections attach to the floor. You'll have your 1/2" socket on an extension and your ratchet. You'll find some of them are slightly loose too. Do you think you're paid inspector is going to do that ? Maybe....but if the ground is wet, and since you're not there to ride herd over him....he is barely even going to glance under that trailer.
Nobody is going to "care" about this thing like you are. Not the Indiana farm boys putting it together, not the dealer, not the 19 year old high school dropout working in the shop at the dealer, not the inspector.....none of 'em. YOU are the only one that is really going to care enough to bring it home, and do things like pull the brake drums off, and pack the bearings correctly. And adjust the brakes properly. Etc.

..... " some assembly required". Keep repeating that in your head !
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Old 03-23-2016, 12:42 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnimalHungry View Post
I hear ya. I was hoping to be able to find a reputable RV inspector just like I'd find a reputable mechanic if I wanted an auto inspection who would give me an independent review of the TT. While these TTs are "new" many of them have been sitting around in the elements for months and I just want to be able to avoid the worst, most obvious issues if at all possible. I like the way they are simple, so I can inspect, repair and maintain it myself but spending $20k plus on something that leaks from the get-go isn't in my plan. And I really don't care about the few hundred bucks of inspection fee if it means I can avoid the very worst issues straight out of the gate.

Cheers
Simon
....you're missing my point Simon. If there is a small leak in this new trailer that's been sitting on the lot for months.....neither you, nor the inspector is even going to be able to see evidence of it. Unless you tear the inside walls apart to look for "hidden" damage.

Go around to a local RV lot and look at trailers. Doesn't matter the brand...just go look. Chances are you will see various small issues ( loose/missing screws, cabinet doors crooked, etc ), but what you won't be able to see is if there are major internal structural problems. Those things manifest themselves over a period of time and use.

Best of luck to you finding a "certified, educated" RV inspector. My bet is, those guys are few and far between. If they are all of those things, they probably work at their own dealership. Guess what ? ....they are going to say to you...."come buy from us. We're like....the very best of the best".
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Old 03-23-2016, 12:49 PM   #12
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I understand. At the end of the day it's just about minimizing risk. While an inspector won't be as thorough as I will be, he should be able to, for example, tell me if there's moisture inside the thing which will have be running a mile. I'll remember the "some assembly required"!

Cheers
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Old 03-23-2016, 01:17 PM   #13
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Keep us updated please ! I'm curious to see how this whole process works out for you.
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Old 03-23-2016, 01:27 PM   #14
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Will do. We're going to view some tomorrow if the snowstorm here eases up. Have to see how much wriggle room the local dealer has on price.

Cheers
Simon
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Old 03-23-2016, 02:30 PM   #15
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....snow ???? ....what is this snow you speak of !!

....this was day before yesterday here in Tucson.....cooled to a moderate 77 today.....

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Old 03-23-2016, 03:18 PM   #16
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....snow ???? ....what is this snow you speak of !!

....this was day before yesterday here in Tucson.....cooled to a moderate 77 today.....

Started half hour ago. Now they project maybe 11 inches. Me=sad, snowmobiling husband=hopeful!
96 degrees is a miserable temperature imho.
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Old 03-23-2016, 03:47 PM   #17
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LOL

I agree with ^^^^^^ 96 degrees is to damn hot!

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Old 03-23-2016, 03:54 PM   #18
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So, my question is two-fold: First, do we know why there is such a different advertised price range, especially when it's so easy these days to compare prices in your home state and nationally? I'll go with supply and demand being one factor. If a dealer has one on the lot (and maybe the only one in the area) - he may be patient, set a high price and wait for the buyer. If a dealer has ten on the lot, or lots of dealers nearby, competition may result in lower prices. Also, the farther the dealer from the manufacturer, the more the dealer pays in transportation from manufacturer to lot.



Then secondly, what would be a good price for my new 233RBS if the MSRP is $25k? For what it's worth, a good price is what you're willing to pay - factor in travel to/from an out-of-area dealer, convenience, etc. The minute you settle on the absolute lowest price you'll buy it and do a search two weeks later and find one cheaper. It's inevitable.
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Old 03-23-2016, 04:19 PM   #19
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LOL

I agree with ^^^^^^ 96 degrees is to damn hot!

....it was just about right hanging out in and by the pool all afternoon....
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Old 03-23-2016, 04:26 PM   #20
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So, my question is two-fold: First, do we know why there is such a different advertised price range, especially when it's so easy these days to compare prices in your home state and nationally? I'll go with supply and demand being one factor. If a dealer has one on the lot (and maybe the only one in the area) - he may be patient, set a high price and wait for the buyer. If a dealer has ten on the lot, or lots of dealers nearby, competition may result in lower prices. Also, the farther the dealer from the manufacturer, the more the dealer pays in transportation from manufacturer to lot.



Then secondly, what would be a good price for my new 233RBS if the MSRP is $25k? For what it's worth, a good price is what you're willing to pay - factor in travel to/from an out-of-area dealer, convenience, etc. The minute you settle on the absolute lowest price you'll buy it and do a search two weeks later and find one cheaper. It's inevitable.
On a $25K sticker, for a current year new model, I'd offer $17K but not expect to get it for that. But in the end, it will be darn close to that. If it's a non-current year new trailer, offer even less. Those usually go for blow-out prices.
Travel expenses mean little to me, as they tend to be minimal. A few hundred dollars is about all it amounts to.
One guy on another forum told me I was nuts to travel 600 miles to go get my new trailer ( 1200 round trip ). I'm thinking..... I bought a travel trailer with every intention of pulling it tens and tens of thousands of miles. Why would I argue over another mere 1200 miles ? Besides, I like to drive. The words "road trip !" .....still light me up ...
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