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Old 04-27-2021, 12:21 PM   #1
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RV dealership salespeople ignoring us?

Hello RV'ers!


My wife and I are relatively new to this, having had a 2018 Jayco Hummingbird 17RB for less than a year before realizing that it had everything needed to go camping, except space...especially for older adults who really need more creature comforts. We sold it early this Spring.


After looking at other larger floorplans, we are very interested in a Rockwood 2509s, as we have a 1/2-ton F150 and can't tow more than 7400 pounds.


I've contacted two large dealerships for quotes. One (about 2 hours from us) has an automated online quote system, but I had a few questions about options. I've been dealing with a young salesperson now for almost a month (initial contact 03/31). Literally a week or so will go by with no responses, and that only after my "initiating" communications again. Most recent example, she answered all of my questions, but I asked a simple yes or no question: with the coming price increases, will the price I was quoted be "locked in", or will it increase? Another large RV dealership in Michigan says they don't raise prices in that event, but see it as a cost of doing business (i.e. the price they quoted is the price it will be, no matter what). I asked her over a week ago, and just emailed her again to see if she received my email (I know she did!). I'm still waiting to see if I hear back.



Anyway, I contacted the other dealership in Michigan (6 hours away from us). Here they don't have an automated quote system, so I contacted them online with what I was looking for. After not hearing anything for over a week, I made another online quote request (online, but doesn't automatically provide cost numbers) for the same unit. This time a young man texted me and said their computer put me into their inactive section, and to give him a day to get the price. That was early Friday morning. By noon Tuesday, I still haven't heard anything, so I texted him to ask where we were on the quote, still waiting to hear back from him, too.


There is another dealership I called a little over a month ago about this same unit, but he didn't seem interested in selling anything either. I asked if he had the model we were interested in, he said no, they don't carry Rockwood. I waited a moment to see if he might suggest an alternative, or ask me why I wanted that particular model. After a few moments of uncomfortable silence, I politely thanked him and hung up.


Soooo...what are my wife and I doing wrong? While we certainly don't want a leisure-suit-wearing/cigar-smoking used car salesman trying to sell us a camper, it would be nice to have a salesperson who acknowledged our existence on planet Earth. We're not asking them to show us around taking lots of their time, or for prices of all kinds of other RV's. Just one...with just 4 standard options...and an "approximate" timeframe we could expect delivery.


I don't want to be cynical, but is this how young salespeople are today? The only other dealership we dealt with at least conversed with us repeatedly (finance lady was our age), but added almost $5k to the price they originally spoke with us about, saying Rockwood sent them a price sheet with higher prices, so they had to increase the price according. After walking away, she called me a week later to see what I would offer, I told them about the same they originally quoted...I haven't heard back from her since.


We are both courteous people (please, thank you, all that) and are genuinely nice people, the life of the party, so to speak. But trying to order and buy a new RV is the only time in our almost 60 years we've had to literally beg salespeople to take our money. And with the high backorder numbers, we'd like to get our order in the lineup so hopefully we might get it in time to take it out at least once or twice, so TIME is critical right now.

We would appreciate your wise feedback and your own recent experiences.
Thanks!
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Old 04-27-2021, 01:01 PM   #2
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I've heard quite a bit from others that demand is far out-pacing supply for RV sales. Prices are going up from the factory accordingly and dealers have no choice but to raise their own prices.

I imagine even in "normal" years that this would be their busy time of year (just before Memorial Day). I can't imagine what they are dealing with now.
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Old 04-27-2021, 01:09 PM   #3
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When given the choice of dealing with a Customer "On the Phone (or online) versus a Customer "On the Lot", the one there in person will win out everytime.

In the minds of most sales persons the one in front of them is the sale that has the higher likelihood of being closed. The other is, again in their mind, a "shopper".

When sales slow the "shoppers" get more attention. It's just the way the world works.
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Old 04-27-2021, 01:10 PM   #4
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I think that the dealers have enough in-person customers, that the internet customers are put on the back burner.
Add that to the fact that many young people have poor customer service skills.
Have you tried RVW?
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Old 04-27-2021, 01:26 PM   #5
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I also noticed at my dealership a near complete lack of "hungriness" . When I asked about it there and other places I visited, the answer was that they didn't have anything to sell. If you want to order something and wait 3-4 months that's another thing, but most people don't.
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Old 04-27-2021, 01:31 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bikendan View Post
I think that the dealers have enough in-person customers, that the internet customers are put on the back burner.
Add that to the fact that many young people have poor customer service skills.
Have you tried RVW?



They are one of the dealerships I'm referring to. In fact, I know I was in their email system because I was getting repeated "form" emails about how different they were, etc, and other things about the company...and even in the salesperson's name. Just nothing from the salesperson.


I understand sales are high (if the dealership even has much left...some dealers are getting low on stock), but should I expect an entire month, or longer, to get answers? Seems that even a simple "keep alive" email to let me know they haven't just blown us off, would be helpful, or better yet, and explanatory email saying it might take a week or so to get back to us. I guess it's just being virtually "ignored" when we're ready to pull the trigger, is frustrating.


Maybe dealerships should have a dedicated salesperson who handles all online inquiries, relieving the lot sales staff of dealing with emails.


I think you may have something there...maybe we need to make the drive (6 long hours) and put them on the spot.
Thanks for your input !
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Old 04-27-2021, 02:04 PM   #7
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Pyroguy, Dave Durnell, the co-owner of RVW, is a member here.
He hasn't been active for a while but he's always said that customers can contact him. You might see if you can get his email address.
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Old 04-27-2021, 02:18 PM   #8
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TI think you may have something there...maybe we need to make the drive (6 long hours) and put them on the spot.!
For the hard earned money you plan to spend I say that is a good plan - 6hr drive and stay is well worth the trip and fairly close
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Old 04-28-2021, 01:13 PM   #9
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There are not many true online dealerships today because of the demand. RV Nation in Ohio is a true online dealership as I bought from them 3 years ago and the price over what I was getting locally was much less and for me worth the 2000 mile trip.
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Old 04-28-2021, 01:44 PM   #10
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With today's demand, in person shoppers get taken care of first.
Make a trip to any of them and I bet your experience is way different.
It is just a sign of the times we are in right now.

I've had two different R/V sales places say they have enough folks coming on the lot that they barely have time for calls and online sales. Are they missing out?... possibly but if they don't have the inventory (and most don't) taking care of someone standing in front of you is way more important. (to them)
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Old 04-28-2021, 02:16 PM   #11
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Found it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bikendan View Post
Pyroguy, Dave Durnell, the co-owner of RVW, is a member here.
He hasn't been active for a while but he's always said that customers can contact him. You might see if you can get his email address.
Found it in a 2017 post on this forum:
David ddurnell@rvwholesalers.com
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Old 04-28-2021, 02:29 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pyroguy View Post
Hello RV'ers!


My wife and I are relatively new to this, having had a 2018 Jayco Hummingbird 17RB for less than a year before realizing that it had everything needed to go camping, except space...especially for older adults who really need more creature comforts. We sold it early this Spring.


After looking at other larger floorplans, we are very interested in a Rockwood 2509s, as we have a 1/2-ton F150 and can't tow more than 7400 pounds.


I've contacted two large dealerships for quotes. One (about 2 hours from us) has an automated online quote system, but I had a few questions about options. I've been dealing with a young salesperson now for almost a month (initial contact 03/31). Literally a week or so will go by with no responses, and that only after my "initiating" communications again. Most recent example, she answered all of my questions, but I asked a simple yes or no question: with the coming price increases, will the price I was quoted be "locked in", or will it increase? Another large RV dealership in Michigan says they don't raise prices in that event, but see it as a cost of doing business (i.e. the price they quoted is the price it will be, no matter what). I asked her over a week ago, and just emailed her again to see if she received my email (I know she did!). I'm still waiting to see if I hear back.



Anyway, I contacted the other dealership in Michigan (6 hours away from us). Here they don't have an automated quote system, so I contacted them online with what I was looking for. After not hearing anything for over a week, I made another online quote request (online, but doesn't automatically provide cost numbers) for the same unit. This time a young man texted me and said their computer put me into their inactive section, and to give him a day to get the price. That was early Friday morning. By noon Tuesday, I still haven't heard anything, so I texted him to ask where we were on the quote, still waiting to hear back from him, too.


There is another dealership I called a little over a month ago about this same unit, but he didn't seem interested in selling anything either. I asked if he had the model we were interested in, he said no, they don't carry Rockwood. I waited a moment to see if he might suggest an alternative, or ask me why I wanted that particular model. After a few moments of uncomfortable silence, I politely thanked him and hung up.


Soooo...what are my wife and I doing wrong? While we certainly don't want a leisure-suit-wearing/cigar-smoking used car salesman trying to sell us a camper, it would be nice to have a salesperson who acknowledged our existence on planet Earth. We're not asking them to show us around taking lots of their time, or for prices of all kinds of other RV's. Just one...with just 4 standard options...and an "approximate" timeframe we could expect delivery.


I don't want to be cynical, but is this how young salespeople are today? The only other dealership we dealt with at least conversed with us repeatedly (finance lady was our age), but added almost $5k to the price they originally spoke with us about, saying Rockwood sent them a price sheet with higher prices, so they had to increase the price according. After walking away, she called me a week later to see what I would offer, I told them about the same they originally quoted...I haven't heard back from her since.


We are both courteous people (please, thank you, all that) and are genuinely nice people, the life of the party, so to speak. But trying to order and buy a new RV is the only time in our almost 60 years we've had to literally beg salespeople to take our money. And with the high backorder numbers, we'd like to get our order in the lineup so hopefully we might get it in time to take it out at least once or twice, so TIME is critical right now.

We would appreciate your wise feedback and your own recent experiences.
Thanks!
Have you looked on rvtrader to see if there are any close to you? I see it is a bunkhouse. If only the 2 of you do you need a bunkhouse?
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Old 04-28-2021, 02:42 PM   #13
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The same is happening in the boat world, we have two fairly close boat dealers by us but couldn't find anything there, as soon as they came in (new and used) they went out the door, all the sales people would tell us is we have to come in on a daily basis, we ended up going 2.5 hrs away to look at several used boats (we were there right at opening time) and found one that was traded in three days before we showed up, it wasn't even on their web page yet or up for sale, they let us put a down payment on it but we had to wait for the paper work to clear the bank from the previous owner, our sales guy said they get calls from the east and west coast (I live in Nebraska) wanting them to hold a boat or several days until they can get there to look at the boat, even with an offer of a deposit the boat dealer is telling them they will not hold the boat, they have a enough local business they are not even worrying about people outside of their local market. I would not have sold the other camper until you had a new camper lined up.
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Old 04-28-2021, 03:15 PM   #14
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I've noticed the lack of hungry salespeople for at least 5 years. RV's or autos. They NEVER call back even after a rest drive or a RV lot visit. They do not need my or your business because the next people in the door will buy (in all probability to the salesperson) so if they're not busy with me face to face I don't exist. Strange at first but now I'm accustomed to being a "piece of meat".
I was in industrial sale for 35 years and would have starved to death if I'd treated customers or prospects that way.
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Old 04-28-2021, 04:09 PM   #15
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Our local dealer usually has 30 plus units on the lot and 20 ordered on the way. Today he has sold 15 units recently (last two weeks) and only has 6 left on the lot. All used units are gone. Sadly demand is outpacing supply. They have one salesperson, one mechanic and the owner. He is a very small dealer I can't imagine how busy large dealers are.


My question would be why waste time on answering questions for sold units and customers that will probably never come.


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Old 04-28-2021, 04:09 PM   #16
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I continue to read about the lack of available RV's both used and new. I am sure the posters are experiencing those trials they related. Just wanted to offer an observation I have had for several weeks now. There are four (4) RV dealerships within three miles of my home south of Birmingham, AL. Two are "big box corporate stores" Great American RV and the C World place and two are single locations. All four appear to have a fair to good inventory. One only sells travel trailers and a few 5ers. The other three sell all styles. When I do go into CW to buy some needed items I am swamped by three or four salespersons. My common response is "did that once from here, never again". Any way, in my location I do see see a good inventory of RV's on the lot. Just my observation from the Birmingham Metro area in Alabama.
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Old 04-28-2021, 04:21 PM   #17
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Not surprised. Back in 2013 when I wanted the new Corvette coming out, I made multiple contact attempts with one of the biggest Corvette dealerships in the country, Kerbeck Chevrolet. Despite multiple emails and phone messages that I knew exactly what I wanted and had cash in hand to pay sticker price, I was ignored. I finally got hold of a manager for the 'family' of Kerbeck dealerships, and he told me to call back on Monday. Needless to say I did not buy from them. This is just an example of a dealership selling so many cars, they could care less about making an easy sale. I was truly amazed they were doing THAT good they could just ignore potential sales.


On a happy note, that same weekend, I clicked a contact for Criswell Chevrolet in MD, and in 15 minutes, their head Corvette salesman, Mike Furman, called me back in person and took my order slick as ice. So, there is such thing as dealerships becoming too big for their own good.
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Old 04-28-2021, 05:17 PM   #18
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I think you need to find a instock unit that meets your requirements, and go buy it. If you blink, it will be gone. Go to every RV show you can and take your check book.

From a dealers perspective, how would you like to take a order for a unit without knowing the cost. That is what is going on plus manufactures are changing up specifications faster than they can print them. Lets also cover rising prices, 2,3,and 4 year old units are selling for more than there original sale price. This is before add on's, taxes, and all the other stuff thy can get into your pockets for. This is happening in the RV, Boat and some half to one ton trucks. It is not a buyers market.
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Old 04-28-2021, 05:57 PM   #19
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from the buyer's perspective, it seems that the dealers and their salespeople might not be trying too hard to 'sell' RVs, but the fact is, they are so busy with the physical IN-PERSON sales, they both don't have nearly the 'time' to respond to 'quote' requests, and realistically also don't know if you are simply 'kicking the tires', or you are coming in with a check in the next few hours. The default is to concentrate on the people who are actually there at the dealership, as they are found to be the most likely 'today' sale. A sale a month away is not alluring enough to salespeople, they don't have that long to wait. They may not even be there that long.

As much as you want to use the internet and technology to get 'ahead' of the game and find the best 'price' and model with all the features, salespeople know that you are not their best customer - the ones standing in front of them are.

I'm a salesperson. I know that my focus, right or wrong, is the person in front of me with pockets that 'may' have money, or a checkbook, or a credit card. The ones that email or text or leave a voicemail, or even 'call' for a quote, have proven NOT to be the sale of the day - they have good intentions, but 'let me think about it' and 'let me get some other prices' are just other ways of saying 'NO'.

GO to a dealer. TALK with them in person. Period. You don't have to buy right there and then, of course, but you'll get a LOT more info to do so.
As for 'quotes', once you leave the premises, all bets are off. There is no 'law' that says they must honor any 'quote' for any length of time. You have to go in with the attitude that you are finding and BUYING today. If they sense that are just kicking tires, they will quickly move on to the next customer.
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Old 04-28-2021, 06:05 PM   #20
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Soooo...what are my wife and I doing wrong? ... Just one...with just 4 standard options...and an "approximate" timeframe we could expect delivery.
It might be that the salespeople don't have the answers that you want. Tis a Covid19 world with rvs in high demand and prices increasing as the price and availability of parts changes daily.
Your best bet right now would be to go to the website of the rv dealers and see if they have one on their lot. RV trader is also a good resource to find the rig you want.

You may also want to reconsider the Rockwood 2509s because it has a UVW of 5300 lbs and a CCC of 1569 lbs. and that's an estimate. If your rig can tow 7400 lbs. That's pretty close to its max.
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