Should you buy a RV – sight unseen without an inspection?

Should you buy a RV sight unseen? What about traveling 100s (perhaps 1000s) of miles to look at a RV for sale only to find out it the condition wasn’t exactly how the “for sale” ad indicated.

Buying sight unseen.

I know it is hard to believe but I have seen people post on social media that they found this great RV on the internet and bought it sight unseen. Why would anyone do that you ask? Beats me. I know we are supposed to believe everything we here and see on Facebook. You gotta think about it though. All you see are the people posting their success stories. No one ever posts that they bought a RV sight unseen and had all kinds of issues. Were the posters bragging they got a great RV sight unseen or rubbing it in to those who didn’t have a good experience. Don’t know. Will you take a chance on buying a RV sight unseen without an inspection?

Is it wise to travel 100s (perhaps 1000s) of miles to look at a RV for sale?

This is a personal question only you can answer. We have had clients contact us after they have flown half-way across America to look at a RV only to find out the condition wasn’t what was described in the ad. The clients comments were, “We cannot fly across America and take time off work to look at a RV only to find out the condition wasn’t the way it was described in the “for sale” ad”. Here are some pics of someone this happened too. In this case, the buyer only took one day off work and drove approx 300 miles round trip to view the RV. The ad indicated it was in great shape. You be the judge.


We advise our “out of town” buyers that we are going to inspect the RV they are looking to purchase as if we are going to purchase the RV ourselves.

Are RV sellers honest most of the time?

Are RV sellers (Dealers and Private sellers) honest most of the time on the condition of the RV they are selling? I believe they are but all it takes for someone to have a bad experience, that is new to the RVing lifestyle, to be turned off on purchasing an RV. Here are pics of a young college student that bought a RV and the dealer (seller) wasn’t honest with the buyer on the condition of the RV. The college student is a newbie to the RVing lifestyle and this unscrupulous dealer took advantage of an uneducated buyer.


Would a RV “Pre-Purchase Inspection” alleviate these situations?

Would a RV “pre-purchase inspection” alleviate these situations? Absolutely!

Can you perform a Propane leak test? Can you perform a Delta test on the RV AC units? Can you verify the RV inverter is working properly? Will you climb up on the roof of the RV to check for any sealant cracks that could lead to water penetration? Are you willing to remove and inspect all the life safety devices in a RV? Most only have a life span of 5-7 years. Do you know how to perform a “hot skin” test on the exterior of the RV? Can you see inside the engine of a motorhome? We cannot either. Is a Fluid Analysis of the motorhome a wise choice? Of course, it is. It is like a blood test of your body.

A lot of folks that have mechanical experience like electricians, plumbers, etc could muddle their way through inspecting a RV before they purchase it. I know it won’t be as in depth of an inspection as you would receive with a certified RV inspector. I gotta believe the average buyer, especially newbies, cannot perform these tests either because they do not have the training or the tools to perform the test.

Does it make a difference of the age of a RV as to whether an inspector should be hired? The answer is NO. We have inspected 2018 models that have had issues. People often ask “what are some things you find most often while performing an inspection?” Maintenance, actually the lack of maintenance and roof sealant issues. A lot of RVers use their RV occasionally and either don’t know they should maintain their RV regularly or they just plain forget to do it. Sometimes it can be health issues arise that prevent the seller from doing any maintenance.

NRVIA Certified Inspectors

That is where a NRVIA (National RV Inspectors Association) certified inspector comes into play. The association certifies the training the inspectors receive and they require all inspectors to have at least 24 hours of CEUs (continuing education credits) each year to maintain a level of certification. We are currently at the highest level of certification, Level 2, that the association offers.

We are trained to inspect any RV that is manufactured. We use a computer generated software that identifies all aspects of an RV, whether it is a Class A Motorhome, a Class B or C Motorhome, a 5th wheel trailer or a travel trailer. We provide our clients with a detailed report, including pictures, indicating any issues we find while performing an inspection. Our buyers are then able to make an “educated buying decision” on whether they should purchase an RV, negotiate any repairs with the seller or just walk away from the purchase. Do buyers walk away from a purchase after they receive the inspection? Yes some do and we feel good that we were able to assist the buyer from not buying a RV that has many problems. We want all RV buyers to enjoy the RVing lifestyle as we do.

To learn more about RV inspections, the “points of inspection” we inspect, about fluid analysis on your engine and more, you can visit us at www.inspectmyrv.com.

We know we are educating “one buyer at a time”. Help us get the word out so buyers can enjoy the RV lifestyle as it was meant to be, worry free.

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