May 29, 2024

Olympia Travel Tips

Maniac Travel Update

RV Podcast: Selling An RV DIY

RV Podcast: Selling An RV DIY

Planning on selling an RV? This week in Episode 438 of the RV Podcast, Jennifer and Mike share their tips on how to maximize your profits when selling an RV.

We have both a video and audio versions of the podcast.

For video, check out the below from our RV Lifestyle Channel on YouTube:

For an audio-only version, you can hear this episode on your favorite podcast app or by clicking the player below:

Audience Feedback

A few weeks back, we talked about family tracking apps. Emily wrote us to say: 

Family Tracking Apps

“Google maps now has a location notification feature! If someone has shared their location with you, you can go to Google Maps, tap the person’s avatar/icon, and tap the Location Notification option. When the person arrives at that location, you get a notification.” Emily

National Park No-Nos

Eileen saw a recent article published on our RVLifestyle.com blog about things you can’t do in National Parks, one of which was about the prohibition the National parks Service has on flying drones. She says:

“The NPS does not “own” the air above the national park, so, if an operator is standing outside the boundary of the national park, and the drone flies inside the boundary, there is nothing they can do to prevent that.” Eileen

Draining your RV black tank in your home septic system

And Chet read our story about whether you can empty your RV black tank at home. That’s something he says he does.

“We have a macerator built into our motorhome. We hook up a black 25′ garden hose and pump it into our toilet. Works great. Pump out grey water to clean the hose.” – Chet

Our Guide to Selling an RV

RV Podcast: Selling an RV DIY 1

Are you considering selling your RV?

Whether you’re upgrading to a newer model or simply no longer using it, selling an RV can be a lucrative opportunity. However, navigating the world of RV sales can be a daunting task, especially if you’re new to the process.

That’s what we talk about this week, offering our tips and tricks to help you get the most out of your sale.

Selling an RV can be a profitable venture, but it can also be overwhelming. With so many options and considerations to keep in mind, it’s important to be informed and prepared before you begin the sales process. 

So, whether you’re a seasoned RV owner or a first-time seller, here’s how to make the most of your RV sale.

First, you need to find out what it is worth

We recommend checking this site:

https://www.jdpower.com/rvs (National Automotive Dealers Association)

Second, clean your RV thoroughly.

Remove personal items, like pictures of your family and travel adventures.

Remove all clutter so looks spacious. Stage your RV like you would a house.

Third, fix anything that needs repairing/consider getting an inspection

Some people pay a qualified inspector to inspect their RV before they list it. This is helpful in two ways.

  • This permits you to fix anything that needs fixing
  • This eliminates any “surprises” further down 

Once you have your pictures, have settled on your price, and made any necessary repairs, there are three ways to sell it.

1. Sell it yourself

  • Take high-quality pictures of your RV’s exterior & interior.
  • For exterior pictures, consider going to an empty parking lot on a sunny day, so nothing distracting is in the background.
  • For interior shots, take pictures from the front looking back and back looking front, and then take focused pictures of each section.
  • Get a for sale sign and stick it in your RV’s window with your number.
  • Place your RV at a safe location, and others will notice. (Some businesses permit this, maybe you have a friend in a good visibility area, etc.)
  • List it on RV Trader – https://www.rvtrader.com RV Trader has literally thousands of RVs for sale all throughout the country, and we believe it is the best place to list yourself.
  • Some use Facebook Marketplace but we do not think this is a good way to go because there are too many scammers.

ADVANTAGES of selling an RV yourself: – You keep all the profit and are in control of this process.

DISADVANTAGES: You are doing all the work, handling the listing and showings. And once you have a buyer, you need to make sure the financing works and then handle the transfer of title (typically at your state’s motor vehicle registration office). The paperwork can be daunting & process can be stressful.     

2. Sell or trade it to an RV Dealer

  • Many RV dealers are looking for RVs to buy, especially if your RV is relatively new, in good shape, and a popular model.
  • Selling to a dealer as a trade-in to offset the cost of your new RV. This can be a simple way to sell your RV. This is the EASIEST way to go. You sell it. You are done. You do not need to advertise, do a  photo shoot, handle showings, and then once you have a buyer, deal with financing, title transfer or ANY of the paperwork.
  • BUT… you will get less money – often substantially less money. We have heard reports of people getting half of what they would have received had they sold it privately.

3.  Consignment

Consignment is the final way to consider selling an RV and is a bit of a combination of selling it privately and selling it outright to a dealer. (Many RV dealers also sell RVs on consignment.)

During a consignment sale, you hire someone (a broker or dealer) to advertise, answer questions, and show your vehicle. Once a buyer is found, they handle all the paperwork, from financing to the title transfer.

You retain ownership of the vehicle through this process, you set the price and you can agree or reject offers.

ADVANTAGES: The dealer or broker may handle advertising and promotion and has the professional experience to handle all the work of selling your RV.

DISADVANTAGE: You will have to pay a commission – often 10 to 15 percent of the vehicle’s price, depending upon the agreement you enter with your consignment broker. And since you are still the owner, you have to pay insurance on your RV, and keep it up, but you can’t use it while it is for sale.

Here’s another podcast on how we sold an RV:

New Travel Tech -Money Saving Travel Apps

hotel room with a view

Time now for the New Travel Tech segment of the RV Podcast, drawn from the pages of NewTravelTech.com – our sister blog celebrating the many ways technology enhances the travel experience.

This week we have three lesser-known apps you can use to save money while traveling.

Klook – Best Money-Saving App for Things to Do

Klook may have a kooky name, but it’s serious about saving you money on things to do. You can find deals locally or as you travel around the world. 

You can search by destinations, deals, and specific services or things to do. It’ll also show you popular activities in your area.

Simply click on Things to Do, Hotels, Transport, or Car Rentals to search for those by location. Or do more specific searches in one of the many categories the app offers.

It’s really a great way to get to know a new city or even discover more on a staycation.

Klook is available and highly rated on both Android and Apple devices.

Dosh – Cash-Back Travel App

Dosh is a cash-back app that offers cash back on lots of things, including hotel stays.

If you’re unfamiliar with this kind of app, Dosh gets you automatic cash back at thousands of places when you shop, dine, or book hotels. You do not have to use coupons or scan receipts like you do with similar apps.

Instead, you download the app, link your cards, and then Dosh deposits the cash back into your wallet automatically. Once you accumulate $15, you can transfer the money to your bank, PayPal or Venmo. Or donate it to charity.

So, like Klook, it’s a great money-saving app to use while traveling and at home.

Dosh works on both Android and Apple devices.

Finally, we want to suggest an app that helps you track your spending on the go. It’s called TravelSpend and it is a a well-organized, easy-to-use app that simplifies how you follow your travel expenses.

TravelSpend – Handy travel-related financial functions

TravelSpend has useful features specifically designed for travelers. These features include:

  • Sync & Share: Organize your budget with friends and family
  • Split Costs: Keep track of who owes whom
  • Auto Currency Exchange: Automatically converts any currency to your home currency
  • Mapped Expenses: Follow your expenses on a map

The app also has the standard money-tracking features that help you stick to your trip budget and gain insight from your spending. So, you could use it at home as well as when you travel. But it certainly excels with traveling budgets.

TravelSpend is available on both Android and Apple devices.

RV News of the Week

Parts of California continue to be battered by heavy rain and snow, causing park, road, and other closures

California continues to be affected by unusual weather, with another severe storm hitting it over the weekend, causing rain and snow warnings for central and northern parts of the state, and needless to say, camping at many national, state, and local parks is impossible.

Yosemite National Park was buried under 15 feet of snow, and park officials had no sooner fixed electricity and removed the snow from rooftops and fire hydrants when another snowstorm hit.

A Yosemite ranger was interviewed here, saying the national park will be closed at least through March 17.

Wet and snowy conditions have caused parts of historic Highway 1 to close, and South Lake Tahoe officials are urging visitors not to come this week.

Also, many dozens of California state parks remain either fully or partially closed. (See state park update here).

Deposits are being taken for an electric travel trailer that propels itself

We saw an interesting story about an electric self-propelling travel trailer that people can order now with a deposit, with arrival expected in fall 2024.

Called the Lightship L1 Electric RV Trailer, it is 7-feet long and stands either 6 feet, 9 inches, or 10 feet tall, depending upon the model, and weighs about 7,500 pounds.

The trailer is being built by a company co-founded by two former Telsa employees. It has an aerodynamic design they say is three times more efficient than traditional trailers.

This trailer has no slide outs, but rather the roof slides up, meaning when in travel mode, it compresses down to a sleek aerodynamic design. The trailer also propels itself, helping the truck pulling it whether that truck be electric, gas or diesel powered.

Another unique aspect is the trailer’s roof and two awnings are covered by solar panels that can produce 3 kW of energy. Other features include an indoor and outdoor kitchen, nearly surround windows, a full shower, and kitchen where all appliances are electric – so no propane.

The trailer’s price will start at $125,000. To learn more, see a story here, or here.

Anyone filming their experience in a national park and monetizing it on social media must apply first and pay a fee

RV Podcast: Selling an RV DIY 2

People who record their travel in a U.S. National Park and then place it on YouTube, Instagram, or TicTok for monetization now have to apply for a permit to film and pay a fee first.

The permit and fee policy has been around for a long time, aimed at controlling large camera crews and staff used for movie or TV productions whose presence could significantly interrupt many visitors’ national park experience.

But over the past few years, many social media content creators have been in a grey zone, not sure if this policy applied to them, as they often record with a hand-held camera alone, making minimal income from their work.

The issue was brought to court, and now a ruling says anyone – no matter small their business – or their camera – needs to apply for permission to film (which can take weeks) and pay a fee first. 

We read an interesting story about how many content creators who make minuscule money by sharing their travels on social media platforms won’t be able to afford these fees and will stop recording in national parks.

To see the story click here.

Small, aggressive, unknown bug biting tourists at Big Bend National Park, leaving itchy and painful marks

Recent visitors to Texas Big Bend National Park are reporting a new, yet-to-be-identfied tiny bug that is biting them relentlessly, leaving itchy painful marks.

The bugs are like no-see-ums or gnats, but park officials have not yet been able to identify them.

Apparently, bug repellent does not work, and they will fly in a person’s eyes and mouth as they swarm. The only thing that offers any protection is a wearable mosquito net, which has become a hot-seller in the area.

The aggressive bug seems to be worse within three miles of the  Rio Grande. They have also been spotted in nearby Big Bend Ranch State Park. To read more click here.  

If you are camping and dealing with more “normal” bugs and are looking for natural ways to keep them away, check out our article here.

RV Questions of the Week

Question: What do you guys think of the new Love’s RV Stops?

Is this the next big thing for overnight stays while on the road? – Rob

Answer: Love’s has worked really hard to attract RVers. They sell propane, offer fresh water hookups, showers, and even fenced-in exercise areas for dogs. In 2021, they started adding RV Hookup spots for overnighting, with full or partial hookups of electric – both 30 amp and 50 amp; water and sewer.

The hookup sites are usually just a few and they are a bit pricey, from $30 to $47.

And they are also starting to open full-scale RV parks for even longer stays at some locations. They have recently opened multi-site Love’s RV Stop campgrounds in Georgia, Illinois, and Alabama and are planning more. They are also partnered with KOA for others.

We think these are great and wouldn’t hesitate to use one. Understand, though, that these are very busy areas. They are, after all, first and foremost a truck stop. But for convenience, they can’t be beaten.

The following sponsors made this episode of the RV Podcast possible:


Looking for exciting RV trip ideas and travel suggestions?

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We’ve written a library of RV Travel books that lay out guided RV explorations of scenic areas of the US that we’’ve explored and think would make an excellent RV trip for you.

In each location, we provide a suggested route and itinerary (7 stops in each guide, one for each day of a week trip!) as well as links to multiple campgrounds and boondocking spots, local tips, and interesting things to do at each location.

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Planning an RV trip can be very time-consuming so that’s why we’ve done the research for you! Just take our guides and use them. We’re sure you’ll have an RV trip for the ages! Instant download. CLICK HERE for information on our RV Travel Guides