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Old 01-27-2014, 10:01 PM   #1
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Really? REALLY? (financing a used Airstream)

We found the perfect Airstream. Lightly used. Beautiful condition. The only problem is ... the credit unions and banks "don't finance RVs" (who wants to finance an RV? I want to finance an Airstream!). Our principal bank quoted us a rate of over 10% for 15 years. We have excellent credit, so this is f******** absurd! How can it be that these things retain their value so well and yet no one will finance them at reasonable rates? I've been around lending for decades, so I understand underwriting-- but these would seem to be a good risk. I don't get it.

Anyway ... any ideas on finding sources?
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Old 01-27-2014, 10:21 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Belbein View Post
We found the perfect Airstream. Lightly used. Beautiful condition. The only problem is ... the credit unions and banks "don't finance RVs" (who wants to finance an RV? I want to finance an Airstream!). Our principal bank quoted us a rate of over 10% for 15 years. We have excellent credit, so this is f******** absurd! How can it be that these things retain their value so well and yet no one will finance them at reasonable rates? I've been around lending for decades, so I understand underwriting-- but these would seem to be a good risk. I don't get it. Anyway ... any ideas on finding sources?
I would check with Good Sam Club they advertise low rates. I get lots of emails from KOA advertising low rates too.

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Old 01-27-2014, 10:50 PM   #3
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It is precisely that it is an Airstream that they balk.
In the world of insurance risk, AS's are a "luxury item"
compared to most other RV's. Financing "shares the risk" between you
and the lender. It's way better if you pay cash....I use Liberty Mutual.

I once tried to get insurance on a Donzi speed boat...high end...fast. (paid cash)
I have a captains license for big ships but the insurance agent would'ent
even insure me or the boat.
They shy away from fast, expensive and exotic "things" unless you pay up front.
Never did put the Donzi in the water and my AS lives on blocks in a barn. So I just go and compose music in it. It's my little luxury.
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Old 01-27-2014, 11:00 PM   #4
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If you are not buying through a dealer investigate the possibility of the seller consigning it to a dealer for a flat fee and secure financing through them. That would beat the 10% !
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Old 01-28-2014, 04:31 AM   #5
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10% seems a bit high for a secured loan but not out of line, I think, for a used travel trailer. Here are some things to consider.

- Buy from a dealer - they always have financing sources, and selling a loan is a profit item for them.

- An insurance agent. Many offer financing now and may be interested in getting your business for the insurance and the loan .

- If you own your car(s), refinance the car(s) and use the cash for the Airstream.

- Refinance the house or a second mortgage or line of credit on your house.

- Unsecured loan. If your credit is good, an unsecured line of credit might be 7%.
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Old 01-28-2014, 05:21 AM   #6
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Another option may be a second mortgage on one's home, or borrowing from one's 401K.

US Bank also offers RV loans. In fact, I believe they actually provide the "Good Sam" loans.

Regards,

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Old 01-28-2014, 05:49 AM   #7
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That is exactly the reason we got a new one.
Borrowed the money online from Good Sam/Essex.
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Old 01-28-2014, 05:53 AM   #8
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Two years ago I found multiple sources for financing a used Airstream. Though it had to be less than either 5 or 7 years old (I don't remember). Bank of America financed ours. Did it all online.
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Old 01-28-2014, 06:21 AM   #9
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Never had a problem with financing through my credit union or a bank. Jim
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Old 01-28-2014, 07:05 AM   #10
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I remember when we purchased ours. We went through our credit union. They offered financing for used travel trailers, but their valuations compared to current "real world" valuations were WAY off. (like about $10K off!)
We spoke with the lending officer and managed to talk him into a higher loan value through pictures and better descriptions of the Airstream.
Thinking back on it, I get it now. There are all types of airstreams in all sort of conditions out there. Some will take precious care of their beloved trailer, while others wont. Some (like me) live in a part of the country where 1 good hail storm and BAM! The bank just lost its ass. (knock on wood)
Financing on used Airstreams can be rough and usually involves bringing cash to the table, and more than you wanted to (or have!)
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Old 01-28-2014, 07:22 AM   #11
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My credit union financed it at 9.9%. I don't worry too much about the rate because (a) we weren't borrowing a lot of money, and (b) the interest can be deducted from your taxes as a second home (consult an accountant on this second point).

The biggest issue we thought we'd have was what truxpin said - the Kelley Blue Book prices for Airstreams are far lower than what they actually sell for. But the credit union used a different source for values that didn't have that issue.
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Old 01-28-2014, 07:28 AM   #12
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How about a line of credit? Not sure if this product exists in the US - we've got a line of credit linked to our house, at (currently) just over 4%.

We can spend the money on anything we wish, should we wish to.
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Old 01-28-2014, 09:59 AM   #13
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insuring it can be interesting too. Come back to the forum if you need help with that.
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Old 01-28-2014, 10:03 AM   #14
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It is extremely difficult to finance any RV over ten years old including a Prevost.

Wells Fargo, US Bank has financed RV's in the past. I also second Essex Credit.
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Old 01-28-2014, 07:14 PM   #15
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Well, not no mo'

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Originally Posted by zigzagguzzi View Post
Never had a problem with financing through my credit union or a bank. Jim
I figured that we wouldn't have any problem, because that was my experience with cars and boats. But it's not your father's lending world any more. Major banks--including one mentioned above--no longer loan on RVs. Nor do our credit unions. I don't know why they don't want the business ... I mean, maybe for a POS camping trailer that declines precipitously in value I get it, but not for an Airstream. We only found one major bank that would loan on an RV, and their interest rate was outrageous.

The "Good Sam" lead was a good one. Thanks. Though ... I tried to apply on line today and got into computer hell when their database didn't recognize any permutation of "Airstream" "Sport" "22" and "FB" ... but I'll just call them tomorrow.

Thanks for all the input, everyone.

My next complaint will be about transport charges. (Coming soon to a "Dollars and Cents" forum near you.)
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Old 01-28-2014, 08:12 PM   #16
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Credit is a joke...do as our grandparents did. Pay cash. If you can't afford it, you can't afford it.

I am not rich- I paid $1000 for my Airstream and I'm restoring it myself. I would never put my mortgage up against a loan for a camping trailer. I own all of my cars (all used) and the only debt I have is my mortgage.

Life is simpler when you don't owe people...
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Old 01-28-2014, 08:26 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by PA BAMBI II View Post

Pay cash. If you can't afford it, you can't afford it.

Life is simpler when you don't owe people...
I do hope you run for Congress!
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Old 01-29-2014, 11:50 AM   #18
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I don't understand why anyone would choose to be in debt to anyone else. "The borrower is slave to the lender."
There's no need to judge how others choose to live.

If you can't usefully contribute to a topic, there's no need to respond.
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Old 01-29-2014, 11:53 AM   #19
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There's no need to judge how others choose to live.

If you can't usefully contribute to a topic, there's no need to respond.
Apologies- I deleted my own message.
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Old 01-29-2014, 12:36 PM   #20
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Apologies- I deleted my own message.
Thanks.
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