In my previous post, I discussed the used class b motorhomes which I feel would be great selections for my personal style and my needs for traveling and working from the road. At this point, the Falcon and the Xplorer are my top choices based on features, amenities, low price and being fully self-contained. In this post, I will show you what I do and where I look, if you’re interested in finding used class B motorhomes for sale.
How to Find Used Class B Motorhomes for Sale
The search is supposed to be the funnest, most exciting part of the RV purchase process but I know from experience that it can be a pain. I live in Houston, which is a HUGE city but not exactly the RV capital of the world, meaning we don’t get a whole lot of used RVs for sale. Places like California, Florida and Arizona have way more RVs for sale than we do here so if I want a certain type of RV, I had better know how to search in different locations.
- Where to look for Used Class B RVs:
- Local Listings
- RV Dealers
- RV Consignment Lots
- Social Media
- Ad Huntr
- eBay Motors
- RV Trader
Although listing an RV in a local listing and paying for the Ad might seem crazy with all the free advertising listings out there these days, I still find that people use this form of Ad, despite the cost. Examples of local listings would be your local newspaper, community newspapers and bulletin boards (grocery stores). You may also find possible RV choices for sale while driving around town. Keep your eyes open for those “for sale” signs, as you may find a real bargain.
The above local newspaper listing is an example of where you might find used class B motorhomes for sale. I wouldn’t get your hopes up, but it is worth it to grab the local paper from your front yard or a near-by convenience store and take a look.
Dealers in general can be a pain because they thrive on pressure and they usually have quite a markup on their vehicles to cover costs. I would personally stay away from dealers, but maybe you enjoy messing with the sales people and their managers. This can be fun, plus you can get a look and feel of the inside and you may even get a knowledgeable sales person who answers all your questions.
To find RV dealers near your location, you could do a Google search like one of the following:
- Motorhome dealers in (your city here)
- Used Class B Motorhomes For Sale (your city here)
- Class B motorhome dealers in (your city here)
- RV Dealers (your city here)
RV Consignment Lots
I really only have experience with one RV Consignment location and that happens to be PPL Motorhomes here in Houston, Texas, plus they have a location in New Braunsfels. Basically, a person looking to sell their RV takes their RV to a consignment location, they decide on a price and then the RV Consignment company adds their markup. The cool thing about the location near me (PPL) is that they are hassle-free, meaning I can check in then roam their whole facility without constant pressure from a sales force. Even if you don’t plan to buy from the consignment place, at least get in there and try things out. Can you stand up inside? Is the restroom big enough? How comfortable are the driving seats? Is the bed big enough for you and/or a guest.
RV Consignment locations will usually clean up and get the RV ready for sale and some may test the systems and fix things before listing the RV for sale. After looking through their RV selection, you can then talk with a representative and begin negotiating on price.
Below is a look at the PPL Motorhomes website (click to enlarge):
When your looking for a vehicle, why not let your friends on the net know about it and maybe they will do some of the heavy lifting for you. Sites like Facebook and Twitter can be great ways to spread the word. If you have tons of Facebook friends, then you could ask your friends to keep their eyes and ears open and help you track down the elusive RV deal of your dreams.
The same is true with twitter. You would be surprised how helpful the tweeting community can be. Maybe your perfect RV is sitting in a driveway in Minnesota but you would never know because the owner just has a for sale sign and no other form of advertisement. But, if your twitter buddy sees this RV and lets you know about it, you just extended your reach with a couple keyboard strokes.
Searching for RVs on Craigslist
Craigslist has become the go to site for buying and selling stuff online. In my experience, Craigslist has been great for both selling my stuff and buying things for cheap. You can find just about anything for sale and even some stuff for free on Craigslist.
When you first go to Craigslist, the site will normally detect your location, based on your ip address, and pull up the sub-page for your city or one near you. Below is a look at the very basic looking Craigslist home page, but don’t let the basic feel and touch of the site fool you. It’s a powerful, free Ad listing site.
Although the site is great for buying and selling stuff, it lacks severely in search filtering. Something really needs to be done about this, but for now we will just have to use tools to make it better. For instance, if you were to click on “RVs” in the “For Sale” area, like below:
You would be given every RV listing in the Houston and the surrounding areas with very little way to narrow those listings down to something more close to your ideal RV. The screenshot below shows many different types of RV with no easy way to filter out what you don’t want:
The other knock I have on Craigslist is that they should allow us to easily search multiple areas. I know there are not many Class B RVs in the Houston area but I want to be able to easily search other Craigslist areas. Unfortunately, this isn’t available on Craigslist, but there are tools out there that can make this happen.
Ad Hunt’r (Craigslist Classifieds Search)
When an item I am looking for isn’t available locally, I turn to Ad Hunt’r as my multi-state classified search tool.
*** UPDATE 6/18/2013 ***
Thanks Kent for the comment. He suggested I do a video, better describing how to use Ad Hunt’r so here it is:
What makes Ad Hunt’r so cool? Let’s use my current favorite RVs as an example, the Falcon and the Xplorer. To search for a Intervec Falcon RV and filter out all the other RVs, trailers and campers, I would usually start by entering “Falcon” (without the quotes) into the Ad Hunt’r search bar like below:
Just putting “Falcon” into the search will give you about 75,000 results so we need to filter the results down. First lets take a look at the Advanced Search box. You can choose to see results from “Anytime”, “Most Recent” or “Past Month”. I like to select “Past Month”, so I can get a little bit of history. If you go more than a month, most of the Ads will have expired or will have been deleted. Next, press the “Advanced Search” button and the total should be down to about 11,000 results.
The next step to really reduce the results is to select “RV” in the Filter by Category section, which will reduce the results to 50+.
Extra Step (Optional): Now, as you can see below, there are 55 results but we still have results we don’t need. 55 results is easy to look through but if we want to tweak it some more, we can select the unwanted words to remove those listings from the results. As you can see below, the words “Roadmaster” and “Tow Bar” appear on Ads that have nothing to do with the Falcon RV, so we can filter those out.
Below is a quick look at us filtering out the unwanted words. Put the words in the “Unwanted Words” box and press “Advanced Search”. Now, when you hit Advanced Search, it will reset the category, so you need to go back down and select “RV” again under Category.
After all the filtering, I now only have to look through 27 results, and 9 are Ads of the Falcon RV. When you click on one of the Ads, it takes you to the Craigslist page, example below:
Finding the Right RV on eBay Motors
I don’t know if I could buy a vehicle on eBay without personally checking it out first, so eBay is not my favorite for a final RV purchase but I do like to check it out every once in a while to see what kind of deals are available. To do so, you first want to go to the RVs and & campers page:
From there, you can use their Finder and Refine your search. I like to select “Motorized” and “Class B” for my particular choice of RV. See Below:
After selecting a Class, you have a choice of many options to refine your search on eBay Motors including:
- Model Year
- Sleeping Capacity
- For Sale By (Dealer/Owner)
- Slide Outs
- Air Conditioners
- and a few more…
These options should be all you need to narrow down your search. After I make my selections, I have about 43 to choose from, but actually a lot less since I didn’t filter by price and many of the 43 are way out of my price range. Below is a Falcon (without overhead bed) I see available on eBay:
Searching RV Trader Online for Motorhomes
Another great resource to use when searching for an RV is RV Trader Online. I not only use this resource on my computer but I also use the app on my iPhone when I’m in the mood to research RVs. Since I have been focused on the Falcon for the majority of this post, let me use the Xplorer as the example for RV Trader. First off, RV Trader have an easy to use search form right on their front page and gives you an option for advanced search as well.
Based on my search criteria, RV Trader only found one result:
That Xplorer looked pretty sweet but ouch on the price! $25k! Wow!!
Below is a Falcon available on RV Trader. This guy is older but the price is much more attractive:
Summing It All Up
Well, there you have it. That is my list of the places I use to check, find and hopefully buy my RV here in the near future. I personally like Ad Hunt’r the best but use many of them often.
What are your favorite sites or sources for used RVs for sale? Let us know in the comments below.