Are Campervans A Good Investment?

Ever wondered if owning a camper van is a good investment? Concerned about the amount of money that it would take to maintain these vans over time? Read on to discover the reasons why Campervans are a great investment.

There are two things to consider when deciding whether camper vans are a worthwhile investment or not. The first of these is whether you’re going to be investing a lot of money into a van that you are not going to be using frequently.

Of course, this only applies if you aren’t planning on living in this vehicle on a full-time basis. The second of these is whether you’ll be able to re-sell the camper van for a large amount of money after you have maintained it. Renovation can be expensive and so you need to make sure that you will be able to re-sell the vehicle for a greater price at a later date. 

The pressure seems to undoubtedly double when purchasing one of these vehicles for the latter reason, fortunately there are numerous factors that will help you to determine whether you should invest in a used campervan.

How old is the van?

Aged vehicles are well known for having motor issues, cosmetic problems and other engine related issues and campervans are no exception to this. The interior design may also be dated and the renovation of this is something that should be considered with regards to your budget.

What is its mileage?

People traditionally view lower mileage as being better than a vehicle that has higher numbers. However, this is not always the case with camper vans as oil, rust and coolant leaks may occur if your vehicle is older but hasn’t been used as frequently. You should always double check this before purchasing.

Number of previous owners?

Fewer owners is always an indication that the vehicle has been taken care of and is more reliable as it has been recycled continuously or been in need of constant renovations.

Water damage?

One of the key things that you should look for in a campervan is whether there are any water spots. If there are any bubbles in the paintwork or any mould / discoloration on the walls then this is a clear indicator that the vehicle has experienced water damage. Also ensure that you check the caulking around the outside of the vehicle to check for this.

Is there any damage under the hood?

Be sure to check out the engine on your vehicle as well as any other components that are situated under the hood of the van as this is the best way to check how well the vehicle has been maintained. If there are any oil stains or stains from other liquid or leaking fluids then you should invest in another camper van.

Do not rush or feel pressured into purchasing a campervan before you have made all of the appropriate checks and seen a number of vehicles. You’ll thank yourself later, especially if you are planning on living inside of the van full time! Otherwise, you’ll be spending excessive amounts of money on renovations and maintenance that could have been avoided.

New Versus Used

When it comes to purchasing a campervan, the debate between buying new or used vehicles takes precedence. Used vehicles are known to be difficult as many of the older, more stylized vehicles may contain rust or water damage that leads to further difficulties.

However, finding a vintage hidden gem is one of the most rewarding things about buying a campervan and you will be able to source these from a private owner. Here are some of the pros and cons of buying both new and used camper vans:

Pros of choosing a new campervan over an old one

1) Buying a new van means that no-one has used any of its facilities 

It’s always nice to be the first to use the shower, toilet and kitchen facilities within these vehicles as you know that a new camper van is going to be immaculately clean prior to you using it.

2) Newer vehicles have fewer mechanical issues

You won’t be required to do as much maintenance on these vehicles and won’t need to replace items like the battery or radiator as frequently (if at all!) You also won’t need to worry about purchasing new tires or be concerned about any wear and tear. 

3) Customize your new vehicle

There are numerous ways to be able to customize a new campervan which means that you can request specific tiles and materials to be built from scratch. You can even select specific carpet colors, microwave brands, coffee machines and solar panels, enabling you to create your own brand of paradise on wheels.

4) New campervans come with new sealing and no water leaks!

You can rest assured that a brand new campervan isn’t going to come with any issues like mold or water leaks that can cause bubbling in the paintwork and create unpleasant smells.

5) New campervans meet all RV park requirements.

The best part about owning a brand new camper van is that they are guaranteed to meet the requirement for RV parks. Whereas, older vehicles may not. Some, if not most, of these parks now require your vehicle to be less than 20 years old and free of rust with fully functioning facilities like water and electricity.

Cons of choosing a new camper van over an old one

1) New camper vans are more expensive

Newer vehicles can cost around $120,000 and you won’t be able to find any newer models for less than $60,000 unless you are extremely lucky. Despite these vehicles being new, they may still need repair work and this can be an additional burden on your budget if you are already purchasing them at such a high price. 

2)   Every single scratch will drive you crazy!

Although this is not a financial burden as such, every little mark or scratch will cause an annoyance as you’ll be eager to keep your vehicle in the same condition that you purchased it in. This means that you may feel more restricted with regards to allowing guests to use the van or allowing pets inside of the vehicle. Older vans tend to provide the user with more mental freedom as they’re less paranoid about damages!

How to make a profit with a campervan?

These vehicles are undoubtedly a great investment if you wish to use them enough to make the expenditure well worth it. You are guaranteed to make a good profit if you follow these suggestions:

1) Rent the vehicle out to travellers.

Use websites like AirBnB to rent your campervan out to those who are travelling to the area. A van to rent for the weekend is the perfect choice for a lot of people and you will be able to make up to $100 per day (or more) depending on where your campervan is located.

2) Before you re-sell your campervan, renovate it.

Don’t feel the need to renovate everything if there is no need to but adding some solar panels or updating the kitchen area is the perfect way to enhance your campervan and advertise it at its best. You could also add a new set of tires or some new decor. These improvements will do wonders to improve the overall resale value.

3) Live inside your campervan.

Living inside your campervan is the best way to make an overall profit. Whilst this may pose a few limitations with regards to space, you’ll be able to save so much money by doing so as opposed to renting a larger house or property. The upkeep of camper vans is only around $100 per month and you’ll be hard pushed to find any rental deal or mortgage that comes close to this level of affordability! 

5) Maintain your records

Prior to reselling, you should ensure that you have kept a record of all papers related to your campervan, including any maintenance or repair work that you have undertaken. You’ll then be able to present all of this paperwork and prove that any renovations are recent in order to impress potential buyers.

6) Keep up on fluid changes

Make sure that your fluid is kept up to date in order to avoid old transmission fluid that can make your gears slippery and thus, pose a danger. People tend to only focus on renovating the more expensive parts of their campervans without recognising the need to keep their fluids updated.

To conclude, a campervan is a great investment as long as you maintain your vehicle correctly and ensure that you are purchasing a vehicle that is sustainable and not rusted. A camper van provides a breadth of freedom like no other vehicle and you are guaranteed to be saving money and making a profit if you live out of these vehicles on a full time basis. 

Matt Roberts
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