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Tips for Buying a Used RV

Considerations for Buying a Used RV

There are many reasons to choose buying a used RV over a new RV. They’re less expensive, there’s less depreciation over time and upgrades may already be done. However, buying a used RV can be risky. You’ll need to do a careful inspection and think about what you want before you buy to ensure this “new to you” RV is a good investment that you can camp in for years to come.

What to Think About When Buying a Used RV

Find Out What You Can Afford

The first step to buying a new or used camper is to figure out what you can afford. Whether you’re paying in cash or choosing to finance, your budget will help narrow down your search. Deciding what you can spend is an essential first step. If you’re not sure where to start, try a quick online search to get an idea of what used RVs that would work for you are selling for.

A trailer parked in an orange sunset.

Determine the Features and Specs You Want

Once you know what you can afford, you need to determine what features and specs you want and need. Think about the number of people that will be camping with you, which reflects how many people the RV should sleep. Research different brands and models. If you find an RV you’re interested in, you should check online if that model or year had any factory issues or recalls. For example, some trailer models from a certain year might have notoriously leaky roofs or stuck slideouts.

Next, think about the size and weight you want. Smaller campers are best for off-roading, and toy haulers are great if you want to bring equipment along on your camping trips. Find out how much weight the tow vehicle you plan to use can handle.

Of course, if you have any questions on what features you want, the staff at Juniata Valley RV is happy to help. Talk to us about who’s coming camping with you and what your camping lifestyle looks like. We’ll point you in the right direction!

Research Comparable RVs for Sale

The next step is to research RVs that are similar to the one you’re looking for or the one you’re interested in. Search for that RV online or on a classifieds site like RVUSA, and even Facebook Marketplace. These websites will show you RVs for sale all over the US and what they cost.

You can also search the make, model and year of the RV you want on NADA Guides for RVs. NADA will give you an estimate of that RV’s fair market value, similar to Kelley Blue Book for cars. These prices are often used by dealerships and lenders to determine an RV’s value. Keep in mind, this is a basic estimated value. Aspects of the RV like the condition impact the value.

Check the RV History

This step isn’t as important as the others, but is definitely a good idea. For about $25 you can buy a vehicle history report from the RVchex website. You have to enter the RV’s VIN (vehicle identification number) to get the report. These reports may include information on whether the RV has ever been damaged, rebuilt or stolen. It will also provide information about manufacturer specifications and any recall notices.

Ask Questions!

Don’t be afraid to ask the current owner or the dealership plenty of questions about the used RV you’re interested in. Ask about the condition, history, title, warranties, repairs and maintenance records. Ask why the RV was sold to the dealership, or why the current owner is selling it. If you buy from a dealership, it’s a good idea to ask about the post-buying process and RV service going forward.

Take Your Time

Buying a used RV is different from buying new because there’s often only one of each available. If you miss out on a new RV, you can order another one from the manufacturer. You can also customize new RVs from many manufacturers to fit your tastes. This isn’t the case with used RVs. When you choose to shop used, you’re limited to only what is on the market at the moment.

Woman buying a used RV. She signs a contract on a table inside the RV.

Often times, you can search used RVs from dealerships and individual sellers for weeks and not find anything that fits your wants and needs. This is where time and patience come into play. Rather than purchase something you aren’t completely sure about, take time to watch what comes up for sale. Wait for the RV that will truly make you happy. It’s the only one that’s worth it!

When buying a used RV, you should find a dealership you can trust. Juniata Valley RV is one of the best used RV dealers in Pennsylvania. We have tons of used and new towable RVs and motorhomes on the lot! We also accept trade ins when you’re ready to upgrade your RV.

Ready to shop used RVs for sale? Browse our full used RV inventory online. You can filter your search to see only the units you’re interested in and let us know when you’re ready to come take a tour. Don’t see what you want today? Check back later! Our new and used RV inventory is always changing.

Begin Your Adventure

Tiny Camper Manufacturers at Juniata Valley RV

Compact campers have exploded onto the RV scene in recent years. Tiny campers are just what they sound like – short, lightweight, small campers. They’re easy to tow and can be towed by most vehicles thanks to their weight. Additionally, they’re easy to store in your garage and provide more campsite options thanks to their modest size. A-frame or teardrop, outdoor-loving couples and small families have fallen for compact camping in every style. And these tiny camper manufacturers are happy to oblige.


About Our Tiny Camper Manufacturers

An Aliner parked and leveled at sunset.

Image courtesy of Aliner.


The well-known Aliner is one of the top tiny camper manufacturers, and their Expedition is one of the most popular models at Juniata Valley RV. Aliner makes hard-sided, fold-down campers with an A-frame. They’re produced by Columbia Northwest, Inc. The first A-frame by Aliner was made in the early 1970s by Ralph Tait in Bend, Oregon. He and his sons owned and ran the business until 2007, when it was sold to Columbia Northwest, Inc.

You can shop Aliner campers for sale in Pennsylvania at Juniata Valley RV! We’re one of Aliner’s major dealers and we’ve sold hundreds of Aliner Classic, Expedition, Scout and Ranger models over the years. You won’t want to miss out on our Aliner inventory!

Gulf Stream

Whether you’re after a motorhome or a towable RV, Gulf Stream probably makes a unit that will work for you. The Shea family established Gulf Stream Coach in 1983, and they’ve been producing top-quality motorhomes and trailers ever since. They’re still family owned and operated today. Gulf Stream makes 22 brands and over 140 RV models.

Ameri-Lite is Gulf Stream’s tiny camper model. There are more than 20 Ameri-Lite floorplans to choose from, and their Super Lite models never reach more than 3,700 lbs. With many different weights, models and prices to choose from, there’s an Ameri-Lite for families of every shape and size. Check out the Gulf Stream RVs for sale at our dealership!


The CrossRoads Zinger is a compact camper model that we love. CrossRoads is a popular RV brand; they make fifth wheels, travel trailers and destination campers. Juniata Valley RV carries the CrossRoads Zinger and Zinger Lite, which puts them on the list of tiny camper manufacturers. Since 1996, CrossRoads has built dependable, affordable RVs.

Their compact camper model, the Zinger, is known for its ability to maximize both storage space and comfort in every floorplan. They’re all made with the addition of small luxuries like heated and enclosed underbellies and black tank flush. You can shop CrossRoads RVs for sale at Juniata Valley RV!

A Zinger Lite by CrossRoads, one of our tiny camper manufacturers, on the lot at our dealership.


Though Heartland makes fifth wheels, toy haulers and traditional travel trailers, they didn’t fall short with their North Trail tiny camper line. These Ultra-Lite campers still manage to take advantage of the available space with their open concept floorplans and large windows.

Heartland was founded about 20 years ago when a group of experienced RV professionals joined together to develop an RV that met the needs they’d seen in the industry. In 2007, they introduced the lightweight North Trail and joined the growing list of tiny camper manufacturers. The North Trail met the needs of campers in a struggling economy with rising gas prices, and has brought countless families camping ever since. You can find Heartland RVs for sale here at Juniata Valley RV.

A nuCamp teardrop camper parked with lawn chairs outside.

Image courtesy of nuCamp. 


This is one of the most popular tiny camper manufacturers – they specialize in compact campers! We carry both their TAG and TAB teardrop trailers. The nuCamp brand is a household name on the tiny camper manufacturers scene. They began making their small campers in 2004, before the compact camping trend really took off.

These innovative trailers were at the forefront of tiny campers, and they’ve managed to be one of the most popular teardrop trailer manufacturers over the past two decades. At under 3,000 lbs., these campers are perfect for outdoorsy couples with compact SUVs. You can shop nuCamp on our website today.


The name Winnebago is likely the most recognizable in the RV industry, and with good reason. Since the early 1960s Winnebago has been a leading manufacturer of trailers and motorhomes. They’ve spent decades encouraging outdoor adventure travel and providing a home on the road for couples and families alike. Winnebago has been one of the biggest tiny camper manufacturers for decades.

Hike and Micro Minnie by Winnebago are two tiny camper models we always like to have in stock at our Pennsylvania RV dealership. The level of craftsmanship and camper diversity can’t be beat. See our full inventory of Winnebago RVs for sale, tiny campers to motorhomes, on our website. 

The popularity of tiny campers in the past few years has shown just how convenient and effective these RVs can be. Couples and small families who want to focus on time spent outdoors, but don’t want to sacrifice sleeping in the air conditioning, have fallen in love with compact camping. These tiny camper manufacturers are all available at Juniata Valley RV! You can browse our tiny campers inventory online or stop in for a tour today.

Begin Your Adventure

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