February 29, 2024
Are you planning to finance your RV? This article explores the different RV loan terms and repayment periods available, the pros and cons of short-term vs. long-term loans, expert advice from dealerships and lenders, and personal stories from those who have financed RVs. Learn how to choose the right loan term and repayment period for your budget, how to obtain pre-approved financing, how to pay off an RV loan early, and explore alternative ways to finance an RV.


If you’re shopping for an RV, chances are you’re also weighing up financing options. RVs can be a significant investment, and financing can make it easier to get your dream home on wheels. But what loan term is best for you? In this article, we’ll explore the different loan terms and repayment periods available, as well as the pros and cons of long-term and short-term loans. We’ll also share expert advice and personal stories to help you make an informed decision, whether you’re buying a brand new RV or a used model.

Discussing Different Loan Terms and Repayment Periods

RV financing typically offers loan terms of between ten and twenty years, depending on the lender and the type of RV you’re buying. But how does the loan term you choose affect the overall cost of the RV?

“Choosing the right RV loan term is a balancing act between your monthly budget and the total amount you’re willing to pay in interest,” says financial advisor David Martin. “A longer loan term means you’ll have lower monthly payments, but you’ll ultimately pay more in interest.”

For example, a ten-year loan for a $50,000 RV at an interest rate of 5% would require monthly payments of around $533, and the total cost of the loan would be $63,958. By contrast, a twenty-year loan for the same RV at the same interest rate would require monthly payments of around $325, but the total cost of the loan would be $78,119.

Personal Stories of People who have Financed RVs

To better understand the impact of different loan terms, we spoke to RV owners who have financed their vehicles. Calvin and Marie purchased a Class C RV five years ago and financed it over ten years. According to Calvin, “We chose a ten-year loan term because we wanted to keep our monthly payments as low as possible. It meant we could enjoy our RV without worrying too much about the costs. But looking back, I wish we had gone for a shorter loan term. We ended up paying a lot more in interest than we would have otherwise.”

In contrast, Randy and Paula financed their fifth-wheel trailer over fifteen years. According to Randy, “We opted for a fifteen-year loan because it meant we could afford a bigger, more luxurious RV. It also gave us more flexibility in our budget. We were able to pay off the loan a few years early, which really helped us with our retirement savings.”

Expert Advice from Dealerships and Lenders

To get a better sense of what factors you should consider when choosing an RV loan term, we spoke with RV dealerships and lenders. “Interest rates are a huge consideration,” says RV dealer Sue Chen. “The higher the interest rate, the more you’ll pay in interest if you choose a longer loan term. But you also need to consider the overall cost of the RV and what you can realistically afford to pay per month.”

Lenders also recommend considering the expected resale value of the RV. “If you’re likely to sell or trade in your RV before the loan term is up, you might want to choose a shorter loan term,” says loan officer Bill James. “This allows you to pay off the loan faster and get the most value for your RV.”

Step-by-Step Guide to Financing an RV

If you’re new to RV financing, the process can be daunting. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to finance an RV:

1. Prepare your financial documents, including income statements, credit reports, and proof of employment.

2. Research RV lenders to find the best interest rates and loan terms. Be sure to compare rates from different lenders and consider pre-approval financing.

3. Choose your RV and negotiate a price with the dealer or seller.

4. Apply for the loan and provide your financial documents to the lender.

5. Once approved, sign the loan agreement and get the keys to your RV!

The Pros of Pre-Approved Financing

Pre-approval financing is a popular option for RV buyers. It involves getting pre-approved for a loan before you start shopping for an RV, giving you a clear understanding of your budget and what loan terms are available to you.

“The benefits of pre-approval financing are clear,” says financial advisor David Martin. “It gives you a better idea of what you can afford, and it can also help speed up the buying process. Plus, it can help prevent any surprises if interest rates change between getting pre-approved and buying your RV.”

Paying off an RV Loan Early

If you want to pay off your RV loan early, there are several strategies you can use. One option is to negotiate with your lender for a lower interest rate. This can help reduce your overall interest payments and allow you to pay off the loan faster.

Alternatively, you can make extra payments towards the principal of your loan. This can help reduce the total amount of interest you pay and allow you to pay off the loan faster. Finally, refinancing your loan to a shorter term with a lower interest rate can help you save money and pay off the loan faster.

Alternative Ways to Finance an RV

While traditional RV financing is the most common option, there are other ways to finance an RV. Personal loans, credit cards, and peer-to-peer lending are all options to consider. However, these options often come with higher interest rates and smaller loan amounts.

“If you’re using a personal loan or credit card to finance your RV, you need to be careful,” warns financial advisor David Martin. “These options can be more expensive in the long run, and they could put you in financial trouble if you can’t make your payments. I recommend sticking with traditional RV financing whenever possible.”


Financing an RV is a big decision, and it’s important to choose the right loan term and repayment period for your budget and lifestyle. By understanding the pros and cons of different loan terms, as well as expert advice and personal stories, you can make an informed decision about financing your dream RV. And with a little planning and strategy, you can pay off your RV loan early and enjoy the open road without worry about your finances.

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