When I started this post, I had a little difficulty choosing the title at first. Had slightly different thoughts such as “How to do two disaster deals and save it with a third”. Alternatively, “Thrown to the Wolves – A story about sneaky motorhome sellers and one sensible one” or “How we were frauded but found a new passion”. Anyway, I get the feeling that it’s a relatively unique story. That a family with two young children and parents in their thirties who have never owned as much as a tent , makes 3 RV affairs in six months. But it happened to us, and I like to think it’s a story worth telling.
It all started when I got a new job in Linköping during the summer of 2018. In 2019 we sold our house. It turned out that we made a good first housing deal as we got well paid for the house. We relocated the family to Linköping, and we quite immediately started talking about what we had talked about before. That we have had neither money nor time to do (with all the work and expenses of living in a house). Now we lived in a relatively cheap rental property, and we therefore decided to realize the dream: Become a RV owner!
Time for planning and research
Said and done! We started to look for a RV, first online and then through visits to various motorhome companies. Since it was our first purchase, we had some requirements, much like the following:
1. Since we do not know anything about mobile homes, we want to make our motorhome purchase by a major dealer and not private even if it gets a little more expensive. We don’t want to risk being ripped off!
2. The camper should not be too expensive, because we do not know if we like the motorhome life yet. A used RV was therefore a given.
3. The car should be a semi-integrated with sleeping area, weighing less than 3.5 tons (so that we could drive it with our B-licence, wich is the standard swedish driving licence for cars).
In retrospect, it’s really fun to read. We were so wrong,in every aspect!
Since we were brand new to the business, and didn’t really know what we were actually looking for, we decided to simply go to a dealer nearby and look. The choice fell on the Blå Kusten Fritidscenter (now Fritidsfordon Öst) in nearby Norrköping. This mostly because they happened to be open when we had the opportunity to go. Said and done, we put the child in the car (and with a second kid in the belly, very much on the way) and away. More or less as soon as we get inside the store we get to talk to a salesperson (who later turned out to be some kind of manager/owner). We talk for a while and explain the situation, that we want to go on a motorhome holiday this summer but that we do not really know what we are looking for more than an approximate price point.
From distant dream to action
The seller gives a very professional and friendly impression, and shows us around among the used cars. He also speaks very inspired, and gives us a nice imaginary picture of what RV life can be like. We finally find a car that’s interesting, gets a quote with us and thank the owner very much for the visit. Noomie, who for the first time had the chance to sit in a camper roof bed /alcove (now referred to by her as “my roof”) was completely in ecstasy. We go home to discuss it, as a RV purchase is a pretty big deal to be made. What we can also see is that such a thing as a ‘cheap camper’ hardly exists on the market, as long as you do not want a wreck with great renovation needs.
We also take the chance to go and look at Bossings in Linköping to have options to compare with. We can say that the difference in customer service was astronomical. At Bossings we meet a salesman who, as soon as he hears the word “used”, loses all interest in us as customers. A little half-casually, he says that “everything used is in the backyard. You can look and if you find something, you can just tell me.” After this the matter was settled, with that attitude we do not do any business either now or in the future with this company. Oddly enough, this somewhat strange attitude seems to be found in more traders in the industry, to which we will return.
The matter was now settled, we were going to make our first motorhome purchase at Blå Kusten. It all felt great, a good, decently affordable RV without extra luxury but perfect for trying the camper life. But it would turn out that it wasn’t going to be that easy…
The story continues in part 2…