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How To Choose the Right Motor Home

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More and more people are buying motor homes as a means of holidaying because it gives more freedom in moving from place to place, and provides a much more comfortable means of travel than towing the traditional caravan. Before you begin, make sure you set yourself a firm budget – and stick to it. If you are not familiar with motorhomes, study the classified pages in the specialist magazine before you view any vehicles. ‘Practical Motorhome’ magazine advises that we should see as many different motorhomes as we can before making a decision. “You’ll soon start to get a feel for what represents good value for money. Try to build a relationship with a local dealership, or at least one that’s not too far from home. That way, if problems arise or if you need some general maintenance work carried out, the cost of return visits to their premises shouldn’t be too hard on your wallet.”
What you'll need: 
A selection of motorhomes magazines
Buying from a dealer may be more expensive than buying privately, but a dealer has a duty to tell you of any problems and the cost of rectifying them, as well as giving the van a pre-delivery inspection before you collect it. You’ll also be offered at least a few months’ warranty on used models, which is something that you’re unlikely to get from a private vendor.
Also be aware of what weight of vehicle you can legally drive; the amount of home parking space available; and what size you feel comfortable driving.
If your children have left home, or you plan to have a child, how much room will you need to cope with babies and visitors - for a day, or a week? If you’re planning your retirement and intend take longer trips, or visit friends around the UK, will there be enough room to have a bit of personal space?
Do you require extra headroom for you to be able to stand up straight, or manoeuvre easily? Make sure two people can pass each other when one is working in the kitchen, and get to the lavatory when other occupants are asleep.
Colour schemes are a matter of personal taste, but ‘Practical Mororhome’ points out that how different styles favour certain seasons: dark woods can be a bit oppressive in summer, and bright colour schemes can appear cold in winter. Try to assess how much daylight the windows and rooflight will provide on dull or rainy days.
Fixed beds are the most comfortable, but they have their limitations. Corner beds have cut-off corners, reducing one partner’s legroom. Overcab and garage beds will have restricted headroom and one person will have to climb over the other if they want to go to the bathroom during the night. Check the quality and condition of the mattresses.
How much storage space, equipment and worksurface area do you require. Do you need an oven or microwave, fridge/freezer, washing machine. If you’re unsure about how much space you will need, consider what you would need for a week’s touring.
Do you need plenty of space to relax? Could one of the beds be used as a sofa? Could the swivel seats become recliners?
How many people can sit at the table and eat comfortably? Check for table extensions and adjustment mechanisms, and how easy is it to serve food to the table from the kitchen?
If you plan to stay on sites all the time, the lavatory or shower space may not sucha major consideration. Many showerrooms are narrow, so the simplest way to test whether there’s enough room for your needs is to physically act out showering and washing.
A motorhome gives an ideal home from home, and the chance to travel around the country without sticking to a timetable. You can move on whenever you feel like it and, as an added incentive, it makes it easier to take the dog on holiday!
Don’t compromise too much on space – for two people go for a 4-berth.
Long stays away require better bathroom and kitchen facilities.
Remember that you have no guarantees if dealing with a private seller.
Let the buyer beware


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