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Old 09-18-2019, 07:37 PM   #1
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Custom Order or Buying off the Lot?

Interested in the experience of others related to new purchase. Pros and cons of custom ordering new trailer vs. buying off the lot? Do you get a better deal purchasing something off the lot that the dealer has incentive to sell? Or do you save money with a custom order since dealer knows they won't have to floor the unit in their inventory? The model we're looking at is in stock at the dealer but has some options we really don't want (but could live with). Custom ordering gets us exactly what we want and comes with a lower overall starting cost since we don't really need some of the more expensive options found on the dealer model. Trying to do the "cost-benefit" analysis as it relates to compromise. Appreciate any insight from those who have recently purchased new.
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Old 09-18-2019, 08:04 PM   #2
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Interested in the experience of others related to new purchase. Pros and cons of custom ordering new trailer vs. buying off the lot? Do you get a better deal purchasing something off the lot that the dealer has incentive to sell? Or do you save money with a custom order since dealer knows they won't have to floor the unit in their inventory? The model we're looking at is in stock at the dealer but has some options we really don't want (but could live with). Custom ordering gets us exactly what we want and comes with a lower overall starting cost since we don't really need some of the more expensive options found on the dealer model. Trying to do the "cost-benefit" analysis as it relates to compromise. Appreciate any insight from those who have recently purchased new.

I have bought several units off the lot but I now am ordering a unit as There where things on the new 5er i did not want and made the cost of the unit a bit more. By ordering I cut the cost plus the dealer does not have the expense of taking pics of unit and then putting up on web site and then having inventory to pay for. Just my thoughts. Later RJD
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Old 09-18-2019, 08:21 PM   #3
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https://www.rvdirect.com/ ... https://www.wanarv.com/?gclid=CjwKCA...hoCkP0QAvD_BwE ... https://www.rvwholesalers.com/ ... https://www.couchsrvnation.com/ .... I have seen these talked about on here others may be able to provide feedback ... they will all work with you and send a build sheet so you can order what you want ... I bought twice from RVone both times saved a lot and very good experience ... your location may play a part in who you may buy from ... We wanted to order so we did took 10 weeks new Rockwood Ultra Lite ... saving can be in the $1000's ... Best of Luck
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Old 09-18-2019, 08:27 PM   #4
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We just bought a motorhome. We looked at dealer inventory across the country. Not one single dealer stocked the model we decided on, in the option configuration we wanted. So, the only way to get what we wanted was to order the unit through our local dealer.

Outside of clearance sales and moving old stock, the dealer’s price would have been the same either way, dealer stock or new order.

For ordering the unit:

Pros
*You get what you want.
*It hasn’t been walked in and poked at by hundreds of customers while at the showroom, or transported to RV shows.
*Dealer hasn’t borrowed parts out of it temporarily to fix another customer’s unit.

Cons
*You’re pretty much stuck with the build quality as delivered. You don’t get to preview your exact unit before you put money down.
*Design or material details could change with forward production of the model, so it could be built a little different than you expected.

We were nervous about the condition our ordered motorhome would be in when it arrived. We didn’t expect perfection, of course, but we were relieved that it was in acceptable condition as delivered, and all the options we ordered were included.
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Old 09-19-2019, 10:55 AM   #5
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I have bought several units off the lot but I now am ordering a unit as There where things on the new 5er i did not want and made the cost of the unit a bit more. By ordering I cut the cost plus the dealer does not have the expense of taking pics of unit and then putting up on web site and then having inventory to pay for. Just my thoughts. Later RJD


RJ is ordering a new 5th wheel? He will also need a new truck as that old Ram has no power
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Old 09-19-2019, 11:53 AM   #6
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I prefer ordering. I've ordered 2 trucks and 1 fifth wheel now. I would have ordered our current rig, but the manufacturer was putting that line on "hiatus" (which apparently was the precursor to no longer making it).

I felt I got a good deal on ordering as I was able to price shop apples-to-apples from 4-5 dealerships. I didn't have to worry about differing options or anything like that. The dealer didn't have any overhead except for prepping the unit once it came in.

On the one I didn't factory order, it was a left over 2017 that was 16 months old when we bought it. I got a good deal on it due to its age (the 2019s were just coming out by then). But, I took a hit on it being 2 model years behind.
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Old 09-19-2019, 11:59 AM   #7
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This depends fairly radically on the type of RV you're looking at. For example, the Rockwood Mini Lite I bought had about 10 different options, with only a few being hit or miss. For this reason, it was pretty easy to find on-the-lot options if I just had to have the wood grain simulated flooring (I did).

For the higher end trailers and MHs, there are likely a lot more options and those options are probably more polarizing. For me, it wasn't too hard to compromise and take the 13.5K BTU A/C instead of the preferred 15K BTU ... but I probably wouldn't compromise on a big 5er that simply didn't have the optional 2nd A/C unit in the bedroom, e.g.

I'll compromise on an $18,000 trailer with a few options. I'm not going to compromise on a $70,000 5er. For similar reasons, that's why I ordered my truck.
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Old 09-19-2019, 01:11 PM   #8
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If you order find out when they are making year to year changes. When we ordered ours in 2018 it ended up being titled as a 2019, but it was exactly the same as a 2018. The 2019 changes were made soon after that, had we got those changes, we probably would have walked away. there were some significant changes on our model.
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Old 09-19-2019, 01:13 PM   #9
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Hi,

We have bought four fivers off the lot - each one an end of season leftover at a great price reduction. Each had a few thing we might not otherwise have wanted, and each was missing a few things on our wish list. As I see it, life is full of compromises...

But objectively, each of these rigs has allowed us to live in real comfort. And with 6-7 years ownership of each one, we never wished we had ordered new and paid a lot more for a few relatively minor (to us) features.

Others, of course, could legitimately conclude that if you are going to plunk down big bucks, you ought to get exactly what you want.

FWIW from a guy who just bought a leftover 2019 truck for pretty much the same reason...

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Old 09-19-2019, 01:29 PM   #10
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Wgen I bought our motor home it had been sitting on the lot for about 14 months. After looking on RVTrader for quite a while, used ones with the same options were selling for anywhere from $3k less to $12k more. I flew 900 miles to pick it up and drove it home. I figure I saved at least $5k and likely more. There was nothing that needed fixing that I could not fix.

As mentioned above, it was almost immediately 2 yrs old. (a new 2016 purchased in May 2017). Looking at what similar ones sell for now, I've taken about a 20% hit on depreciation in the 16k miles and 30 months we've owned it.
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Old 09-19-2019, 01:43 PM   #11
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I have bought several units off the lot but I now am ordering a unit as There where things on the new 5er i did not want and made the cost of the unit a bit more. By ordering I cut the cost plus the dealer does not have the expense of taking pics of unit and then putting up on web site and then having inventory to pay for. Just my thoughts. Later RJD
Congrats RJ are you going with a Phoenix ?

I ordered my current trailer added some extras like additional 110 outlets
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Old 09-19-2019, 01:59 PM   #12
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I prefer off the lot and at least a year old new model. Our two new TT purchases were heavily discounted. We would have never gotten an ordered trailer anywhere near the prices we got the ones off the lot.
We aren't picky about getting every little detail we want. We care about getting the most for our money. Ordering one would be the most costly.
And we don't do trade-ins. We sold our 10 year old HTT for twice what the dealer offered as a trade-in, for our new TT.
Same goes for our vehicles.
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Old 09-19-2019, 02:17 PM   #13
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As you can see the answer is... it depends.

Off the lot units are often discounted more than an ordered unit so the dealer can move it and use the money for other things if they've had it a while. And, a unit they got in last week isn't going to get those same discounts either.

As mentioned, it may have been sitting there with a certain amount of folks going in and out to look at it. That really shouldn't hurt it but you might want to be sure things like the flooring and counters aren't scuffed, etc.

You really have no way of changing build options on a lot model. What you see is what you get, with the exception of things a dealer 'could' install. (like slide toppers) But then you risk paying more to the dealer than what it costs from the factory and have to take into consideration whether the dealer is 'capable' of doing quality work. You need to decide on that.

Ordering will get you all the options you want usually cheaper than the dealer can install them.

There is a waiting period.

Models can (and do) change throughout the year, not just at model year change out.
It could be slightly different or significantly different than a model on the dealers lot and there is really no guarantee the build quality will be any better or worse. That is hit or miss and a chance you take when ordering.


I'd have no qualms buying a unit off the lot if it met my criteria of having the things I want at a good price. I'd also have no qualms ordering as long as I did my homework on what options are available... meaning it is often easier to visualize a build in person (seeing it on the lot) than trying to figure it out on a build sheet.

For us, a big purchase like a R/V needs to check ALL the boxes and not just some.

If an on the lot model does that, all well and good, if not, time to order.
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Old 09-19-2019, 04:45 PM   #14
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This happened to us ... 5picker said "Models can (and do) change throughout the year, not just at model year change out.
It could be slightly different or significantly different than a model on the dealers lot and there is really no guarantee the build quality will be any better or worse. That is hit or miss and a chance you take when ordering.
" 6 weeks into the order rep e mails us for approval Pebble our color choice is gone and we have Stone now he included pictures .... No Problem we like it better 2 shades darker than Pebble .... other changes 2020 unit now comes with factory installed TPMS by TST ... back splash behind stove and counter now top to bottom ... bathroom changed ... shower on same wall as toilet with added cabinet over top of toilet ... opposite wall sink and mirror and the mirror is lower on the wall (better for Cindy) .... tires upgraded to 16" from 15" more load capacity ... we were happy with all the changes I think this happens most years around July/August ... something to consider when placing your order... as far as build quality I am sold on Rockwood/Flagstaff ...
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Old 09-19-2019, 06:50 PM   #15
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As you can see the answer is... it depends.

Off the lot units are often discounted more than an ordered unit so the dealer can move it and use the money for other things if they've had it a while. And, a unit they got in last week isn't going to get those same discounts either.

"Depends" is the operative term.

If the Dealer got huge discounts at the release of the new model year as an incentive to fill his lot, there can be more margin for him to work with.

I bought my MicroLite off the lot and it was fairly loaded as well as being the "next year's model". Had just arrived a day or two before I came in looking for it so it wasn't "old". Discount was fairly deep.

I've special ordered cars and trucks in the past and when compared to buying "off the lot", I've always come out better off the lot. Special Orders had less discount and the off the lot units had more options included that I came to like yet really didn't pay more for them.

The comment that on a special order you get what shows up is so true. The last vehicle I special ordered spent almost a month in total at the Dealer while getting all the issues resolved.

My off the lot MicroLite has yet to see the Dealer's shop and the only "warranty" issue was the pilot lite in the oven. Ordered new one, replaced it myself, and didn't have to spend an additional $40 in fuel to get it to the dealer and back home.
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Old 09-19-2019, 07:12 PM   #16
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I special ordered the truck and the trailer. When you deal with large dealers you can often special order for less then what they would charge on the lot.

The dealer has no liability in the vehicle. It is ordered shows up goes through psi. Gets cleaned and is paid for and delivered. It isnít on their lot for more than a couple of days. They donít have to worry about it being damaged or sitting on the lot for months.

I got 21 percent of msrp on the truck and 30 percent off the trailer for ordering compared to another dealer.
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Old 09-21-2019, 06:04 AM   #17
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RJ is ordering a new 5th wheel? He will also need a new truck as that old Ram has no power
Old Ram Ha New truck will be a T2000 Later RJD
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Old 09-21-2019, 06:17 AM   #18
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Old Ram Ha New truck will be a T2000 Later RJD
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Old 09-21-2019, 07:02 AM   #19
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If your going to do it do it right, Later RJD
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Old 09-21-2019, 08:26 AM   #20
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If your going to do it do it right, Later RJD
Plus much safer and in my case was also much cheaper then getting a new F450 or something like it and my T2000 even came with a car
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