Young adult families with spendable income ignite record RV sales

Sales in RVs are seeing major gains, as sales efforts pivot away from older consumers and successfully target young adults who are starting to form families and have excess cash to spend on non-essential splurges, reports Yahoo Finance.

Wholesale RV shipments reached its highest annual level in 2017 at 504,600 units, a 17.2% increase over 2016, according to the RVIA (RV Industry Association). The trade group predicts that shipments will reach 521,700 units in 2018, marking nine straight years of growth. In June, Winnebago (WGO) reported an 18% increase in sales for the quarter, boosted by its growth in travel trailers.

After RV shipments dropped to a 30-year low in the downturn of the late 2000s, demand is stronger than ever, according to Pete Reeb, principal at California-based John Burns Real Estate Consulting. The demand for RVs is expected to continue to increase as real per capita net worth improves and the prices of homes keep appreciating.

The popularity of RVs can partially be explained by the evolving — and shortened — definition of vacation. As Katie Denis of the U.S. Travel Association’s Project: Time Off told NPR, “The partial week [vacation] is gaining in popularity.”

Americans are cobbling together days here and there, making long weekends, rather than taking long stretches of time off for vacation.

“With the rise of house and apartment rental websites like Airbnb and VRBO, suddenly baby boomers have access to way more vacation properties than you’ve ever had in the past. Instead of buying a second home somewhere and being locked in, you have the option of being mobile,” said Reeb.

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4 Thoughts to “Young adult families with spendable income ignite record RV sales”

  1. rvgrandma

    Is it they have more disposable income or dealers are more willing to finance them with drawn out loans? I know many that are in debt up to their necks – one pay check away from loosing it all. Why? Because banks/finances companies are willing to take their chances. They don’t care if the person looses their job or have an emergency so can’t make payments and file bankruptcy the banks write it off. Too may think bankruptcy is the easy way out of debt because it has gotten too easy to file. Then once they have, banks will give them loans again cause they know it is 7-10 years before they can file again. I really do not think good credit has the importance to them like like it did to baby boomers and before.

  2. Tommy Molnar

    My observation is, if you can’t park your RV next to your house, you’re just not going to use it as much because it’s such a hassle to go get it, bring it home, and set it up for a trip. So like Dr4Film mentions, ‘millions’ of RV’s just sit in lots rotting away from non-use.

    Not to mention, too many non-RV’ers watch that goofy show “Going RV” and get all excited about getting their OWN RV and heading out to camp next to that non-existent creekside camping site they show in the ads. Just drive up next to that babbling brook, set up your trailer, and enjoy the solitude. And the farther east you live, the harder to find ANY campsites, let alone the river view ones.

  3. Dr4Film ----- Richard

    When I Full-Timed RV for almost 8 years traveling around the country I saw thousands of storage lots with millions of RV’s sitting there not being used. Doesn’t make much sense to spend all that money and then let it sit under the hot sun deteriorating away. Not a good way to use your RV or money.

    1. rvgrandma

      I agree = drive around and check out the storage lots. Not only do people rent storage units to store all that excess they can’t fit in their apartment or house, but they store RVs there. You pay attention and rarely do any of them move. It is sad, but true.

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