Our guide to buying a pre-owned caravan
blog / advice / pre-owned caravans / sales / family
Choosing your first or next caravan is an exciting experience! Buying a pre-owned caravan is cost-effective as you won’t experience the depreciation of the first year and if you buy nearly new, you’ll still get all the advantages of a new caravan!
Stock levels of new caravans have been limited since the pandemic began which makes buying pre-owned an even more attractive option. Production was reduced in 20/21 due to lockdowns and social distancing, and in 2021/22 due to the challenges the industry faced getting the materials they needed for manufacture.
There are many things to consider when buying pre-owned, such as what age caravans are best to buy, how well the caravan has been looked after, whether the decor and facilities suit your taste and requirements, and whether they’re good value for money. Read on for some answers to some of the most frequently-asked questions…
HOW MUCH DO PRE-OWNED CARAVANS COST?
This is a very broad question as it depends on so many factors - the age of the caravan, the level of the model, the spec, how well it’s been looked after… But as a rough guide, if buying from a dealership you should expect to pay between £15,000 and £20,000 for a five-year-old, mid-range, 4-berth caravan.
Start off by setting a budget for how much you want to spend. This may determine what age caravan you’re likely to be able to afford, which manufacturers are open to you and whether you’ll be looking at entry, mid or premium level ranges.
Ensure your budget is realistic - it’s important to get a caravan that has all the features you want and need, but also one that you feel is good value for money. It’s not a good idea to spend more than you’re comfortable with, or to be so restrictive that you’re unable to get what you actually want.
Start off by doing some research - price up different manufacturers and models and compare the options. Which ones appeal to you and have the features that you need to fulfil your requirements? Please get in touch if you’d like our help with this.
At Winchester Caravans and Motorhomes, we stock pre-owned caravans from all manufacturers to give you the greatest choice!
IS IT WISE TO BUY A PRE-OWNED CARAVAN?
Buying pre-owned is a great idea, as long as you’re willing to be patient and wait for the right one to come along. There are so many makes and models out there that you are sure to find something to suit your needs.
If your budget is on the lower side, buying pre-owned as opposed to new will enable you to get a much higher spec model. It may also get you a more spacious model which would be beneficial, particularly for families. The other advantage of opting for a pre-owned caravan is that the sharpest drop in value will have passed, meaning that you won’t feel the pinch of that initial loss!
Plus, as things stand with production levels of new caravans, there is greater availability of pre-owned than new and you’ll be able to receive your vehicle almost immediately, rather than having to order and wait a number of months for a new model to be delivered.
WHICH MANUFACTURER AND RANGE?
There are many different manufacturers to choose from so be sure to research them all to discover which is the best one for you. Different manufacturers will offer different prices, levels of quality, equipment and features, warranties and dimensions. Your search criteria will preclude some manufacturers so researching them will help whittle them down.
Once you’ve decided on a manufacturer, you’ll need to explore the different ranges on offer. A lot of this will be down to price, but there will also be many different options to consider within each individual range; things such as berth size and layout preferences will again help you to make a shortlist.
Remember that as you are buying pre-owned, you’re not ‘picking one off the shelf’ as such, so you’ll either have to be patient for the model you’re after to come up, or have a range of models in mind that you’d be happy with.
WHAT’S THE BEST SIZE AND LAYOUT?
This all depends on how many of you will be sleeping in the caravan and how much space you need. Would you prefer standard width or extra-wide? Extra-wide caravans are 8ft, giving you an extra 8” over standard caravans. These are important things to consider as having sufficient space in your caravan is crucial, especially if holidaying as a family!
Even if you don’t need a 4 or 6-berth, keep in mind that the larger the berth, the more living space there will be. Storage space is another thing to consider as some smaller caravans won’t have much of this.
There are many different layouts to consider, the main decision being whether to go for a mid or rear washroom. This in turn will affect the bed locations and configurations and perhaps even the type of bed. Read our blogs on caravan layouts and caravan beds to find out more…
WHAT DIFFERENT SPECS ARE THERE?
There are many different things to consider when it comes to spec and every manufacturer and model is different. Before going out to look at any caravans, take the time to write a list of all the features that are essential for you and your family. Here are a few things to think about:
Kitchen equipment - size of fridge, do you need a freezer, full oven or microwave?
Type of heating system you’d prefer - Alde radiators or blown air?
Number and positioning of electrical sockets
Type of upholstery and interior styling
Amount of kitchen worktop space
Do you need longer beds or seating?
Amount of storage you’d need as a minimum
SHOULD I READ REVIEWS?
Once you’ve narrowed your search down to a few models, read lots of reviews of each. This will give you an insider's view of the pros and cons of each model from people who have used and lived in them and may highlight limitations of a model that could rule it out for you. Hopefully doing your research will help you avoid any disappointment in the caravan you end up going for.
WHERE’S BEST TO BUY A PRE-OWNED CARAVAN?
From a reputable dealer! Choose a dealer based on recommendation and reputation - it will put you at ease about purchasing from that dealership if someone else has had a positive experience with them.
Opt for an NCC-approved dealer and you’ll know you’re buying from a quality dealership.
You should receive excellent customer care and professional service. Everything will be taken care of for you.
You will receive a warranty with your caravan purchase that will give you peace of mind.
Did you know? We have 4.5/5 on Google reviews and were awarded the Gold Award at the 2021 Owner Satisfaction Awards with an impressive score of 87.2%.
COME AND SEE US!
Why not come and take a closer look? Pop in and see us and let our friendly and experienced team advise you on all aspects of caravan buying! Browse our pre-owned caravan ranges online before you pop in and get in touch if you need any more info!
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