Valuation of used vans?

Oct 19, 2017
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Hello all, I'll shortly be looking to source a good used van and am keen to know when I buy that I get a value for money deal & of course have some ammunition available to help me haggle. Knowing that information is power I've been doing lots of general reading to help me prepare, but the valuation issue just escapes me & I've not picked up background knowledge on this subject as yet.

Can anyone advise where I might find a reliable reference source of valuation material that gets updated and/or offer some guidance on this please.
 
Nov 11, 2009
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That's quite a difficult one. Dealers have their guides but just like Glasses Guide for cars they are almost imossible to get hold of. I've always done it by my own research. Firstly find the caravan models you like. We search all possible sources for sales both private and trade including the two Clubs. Visit dealers to compare models, condition etc. Then when you feel you have a good feel go and seriously view your chosen model(s). If the dealer feels you are a serious buyer then negotiating often brings reductions or benefits. I tend to buy in the dark days of winter as business is slow and I find I get s better deal. Works with cars too. Good look.
 

Parksy

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Nov 12, 2009
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Hi Dave, welcome to the forum.
Click Here to check out the Used Caravan Price Guide.
Buying a used touring caravan is as you quite rightly mentioned, a matter of negotiation backed by knowledge about what to look for.
Prices can vary and the guide should give you a rough basic idea of current prices for each make and model, depending on the condition of the caravan. Never buy without inspecting the goods first, if buying via an online auction website have the caravan checked by an approved mobile caravan service engineer if you are unable to look for yourself.
You'll find some good basic information on what to look for when buying a used tourer Here
A browse around the guide will help you to avoid the more obvious pitfalls for those who are relatively new to the hobby.
Buying from a reputable caravan dealer is normally more expensive than a private sale, but your consumer rights are protected when buying from a dealership or commercial entity.
If you have any questions about buying or using your prospective caravan please don't hesitate to ask.
 
Oct 12, 2013
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I know that when we traded ourd in in May just gone we got a good return and that was after 4 years of it .
It was kept in the best of condition as if it was still new and we only lost a few thousand over 4 years but then haggled a bit when we got our new one for bits and bobs and now we're happy :p
 
Jan 19, 2002
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True it might be more expensive to buy from a dealer, but some give up to 3 year warranty on recent date used vans. If you are new to caravanning you might get a starter pack thrown in which can save mega-bucks - from step and mains lead to battery and water containers. Over the coming weeks you might find a higher turnover of used vans as owners p/ex for the latest model - after all many of the sales at the shows release a used van to the market. My advice would be decide the layout that suits, and the max weight you can tow and view as many as you can. Be picky - a one-owner van with service record that shows signs of care inside and out is ideal. Also bear in mind that you will most likely have to return the van to the selling dealer for any servicing or warranty help so concentrate on sales outlets reasonable locally.
 
Oct 12, 2013
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True , we went back to get a mover put on ours a few weeks after we got new one , it was sitting alongside our old one , what a length difference side by side ,it was sold within 2 weeks off part x'ing it !! The engineer even came over and gave the bairn his cd that was left in the cd player in the old van !!
 
May 7, 2012
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Personally I do prefer to trade it in, it is less hassle and if anything goes wrong with the old one after you have passed it on you will not get them chasing you. The free price guide looks a useful tool as I have looked at dealers web pages to get some idea of value. You can use the magazines website to see if anything similar to yours is for sale and what is being asked, although allow for the dealers margin.
 
Nov 16, 2015
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emmerson said:
Surely, the value of anything is what you, the buyer, are prepared to pay for it?
With you Emmersson, two vans ago a 545 Coachman, never hit it with us the , changed to a , 560 fantastic, so all good. Everything great. Seen new vans but this one keeps us happy.
 
Jul 22, 2014
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emmerson said:
Surely, the value of anything is what you, the buyer, are prepared to pay for it?
No, it is what people generally are prepared to pay for it, which is what is relevant to the OP. I might be prepared to pay £7500 for a certain model of used caravan, but if I find that 90% of them being offered at around £5000, I am not going to choose an odd one out priced at £7500. The value of such a caravan is £5000.

Of course we can get into thought experiments such as the scenario of a millionaire in a death cell, who is willing to bribe the jailer with all his wealth in exchange for a key to escape. That does not mean that keys are worth £1,000,000 each. It is the development of the scenario that has the value, not the key.
 
Aug 9, 2010
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Disagree Z. The seller only wants one buyer, so what that buyer is prepared to pay is what the van is worth!
Doesn't matter about all the others. The one who does the deal is the valuer.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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DrZhivago said:
emmerson said:
Surely, the value of anything is what you, the buyer, are prepared to pay for it?
No, it is what people generally are prepared to pay for it, which is what is relevant to the OP. I might be prepared to pay £7500 for a certain model of used caravan, but if I find that 90% of them being offered at around £5000, I am not going to choose an odd one out priced at £7500. The value of such a caravan is £5000.

Of course we can get into thought experiments such as the scenario of a millionaire in a death cell, who is willing to bribe the jailer with all his wealth in exchange for a key to escape. That does not mean that keys are worth £1,000,000 each. It is the development of the scenario that has the value, not the key.
I have to disagree with your interpretation. In the OP's case it will be what he/she is prepared to pay, It may not be the same as other peoples assessment of value.
 
Mar 13, 2007
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yeah have to agree with that scenario Prof.
when we decided to sell the van I tried hawking it around the dealers including the one we bought it from. to be honest they weren't really interested if I didn't want to PX it. and the best price offered was 25% less than the forecourt price. I looked at a few similar vans asking price. then added 10% expecting to come down a bit for a sale but the first couple who saw it agreed the full asking price as it was still like new and had extras they couldn't fine anywhere else.
they were happy to pay a little more for it to get what they wanted so the end price reflected their willingness to pay it. of course I was delighted it went to a good home and reduced the losses I would had suffered had it been sold for a price dictated by some book.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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I went through this process 18 months ago. If buying new then what isof interest is the trade in price or money to change. The best guide you can get is to check as many ads and dealers for the same make model and year as the one you already have. But this will give you only the forecourt or ticket price. What is difficult is to find out what sort of margin a dealer adds to the price he pays or allows you and whether he also adds a percentage in order to be able to take it off when you haggle.
The spread of forecourt or advertisement prices I found for my previous van was several thousand pounds around a basic price of around £10,000 so not really much help.
The ticket price will also depend on the time of year and how long the dealer has held the van.
Another tack if you have market value rather than new-for-old insurance is to ask your insurers what value they put on your van. Obviously it is in their interest to give you a high rather than a low figure but it may be some sort of marker.

I've bought and sold more houses than I have caravans and although house purchase can be pretty stressful at least you can usually get a better idea of whether the price is reasonable or not.
All this is probably not much help or consolation but at least you know we all have the same problem
 
May 7, 2012
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Possibly the easiest way to get a value is at exhibitions where you can get a trade in price from several dealers. The local one may not give you the best deal though but you have to remember that it is the selling dealer you have to deal with if things go wrong so bear that in mind and the cost of going to collect it when considering values. If you have two or more local dealers try them all.
 
Oct 19, 2017
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Thank you all post contributors, your collective wisdom & views have successfully steered me into my new purchase this last week & I'm in a comfort zone believing I've secured a good van at a realistic market price. Only time will tell of course!
 
May 7, 2012
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Hope all goes well with the new van. Let us know what you got and how you get on with it.
 

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