The coronavirus pandemic and an increased interest in staycations has led to a huge surge in demand for motorhomes and caravans. Coupled with supply chain issues, this means getting your hands on a leisure vehicle has become more difficult, let alone finding one at a reasonable price.
Now, Shane Malpass, director of We Buy Any Motorcaravan, has used his experience in the industry to predict what the year to come may look like. He explores the causes of the current issues and what we can expect in the future.
The shortage of new motorhomes
Addressing the problem of shortages of new leisure vehicles, Mr Malpass said there are a number of contributing factors:
- Semiconductors are in short supply and they are an integral part of anything new and electronic, including the tech found in motorhomes.
- Wood has been hard to get hold of, meaning manufacturers haven’t been able to build internal cabinets.
- Power shortages in east Asia have led to staff working shorter weeks and therefore completing fewer vital components.
Mr Malpass used Swift as an example of how these factors have impacted models. He said the Swift Command unit has been switched out of the manufacturer’s lower-priced models in favour of a simpler alternative without a screen, as there aren’t enough components to go around.
Motorhome price rises for 2022
The cost of buying a new motorhome has risen, with Mr Malpass saying you can now expect to pay £10,000 more for the Swift Escape than would be expected. Models from the likes of Bailey are retailing at around £6,000 more than predicted, and high-spec motorhomes aimed at the German market are £15,000 or more over the recommended retail price.
Mr Malpass said: “There are still floods of first-time buyers onto the market, which is incredible for the industry. All we need now is some of the campsites to invest to the standard the newbies will demand, plus more opening up to meet the demand.”
Availability of used motorhomes and caravans
Used motorhome and caravan dealers are very low on stock, with some that usually offer 20, 30 or 40 to choose from now only displaying two or three. Mr Malpass said a large chain that has 13 branches is reporting just 38 used leisure vehicles available across all of its dealerships. This situation is unlikely to change while new leisure vehicles are in short supply.
With so few used motorhomes becoming available, anyone who can secure one should expect to pay a premium for it. First-time buyers will find bargains are virtually impossible to secure in 2022 and prices are expected to continue to rise in subsequent years, with only a small depreciation over time forecast.
Mr Malpass’ advice to anyone looking to purchase a motorhome is to buy right away. He warns that as models are getting snapped up so quickly, there’s not an opportunity to think too long about making a decision. Anyone who dithers is likely to find a motorhome they’ve looked at has already been sold and the next one to come along will be more expensive.
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