How long can you finance an RV

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There is a saying goes that there is a recreational vehicle for everyone out there. If you are on a budget there are models for you. Similarly, if you have deep pockets there are also RV models for you. In this post, I will share with you all the important details you need to know about financing an RV purchase. 

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Let’s begin.

How RV Loans Work

RV loans are basically very similar to car loans. Before banks give an RV loan they will basically check your credit score aka your financial trustworthiness. Based on your score and other factors such as your personal assets and your verifiable income, they will decide whether or not to give you a loan, the loan interest rate, and the loan term.

So your credit score determines your loan term. The loan term can be a couple of months or several years. Typically, for most people, it is usually between five years and twenty years.

How Long Can You Finance Your RV Loan

As mentioned above, loans generally have a repayment period of between five years and twenty years. Credit unions, banks, and RV dealers are the primary financiers of RV loans.

These and other lending organizations generally consider recreational vehicles as secondary homes. This is why they can stretch lending terms to five or even twenty years. So how long you can finance your RV loan can be a few years or up to 20 years.

The amount of time you can get to pay for your RV loan is one of the most important things to consider when seeking an RV loan. Other equally important things to consider include the down payment and the interest.

The down payment is usually about 20% of the price of the RV you want the lender to finance. While the interest rate you will be offered will vary from lender to lender and will largely depend on your credit score.

If your credit score is high, you will most likely be offered a low-interest rate loan by most of the lenders you will approach. This is something desirable. Moreover, the loan term you will get will also be something you will like.

What Determines Your RV Loan Term

As mentioned, your RV loan term can be between five and twenty years. On average, most RV owners are financing RV loans between ten and fifteen years. Nevertheless, there are also those who have much longer loan terms especially for those with loans in the region of $60,000 or more.

Many lending institutions have flexible payment terms. So even if your loan has a term of 10 years or more, you can pay off the loan at a go or make extra payments to settle the loan quickly.

Different lending institutions consider different factors to determine your RV loan term. Some of the key factors considered by lending institutions include how much time you want to pay back your loan, your credit score, and how much you plan to pay monthly. 

One important thing to note about loan terms is that you are better off having a short loan term than a long one. Because a short loan term means you will be making bigger payments monthly to settle the loan.

In contrast, a long term loan will mean you will be paying smaller amounts monthly and hence you will have to pay a lot more money in the end because of interest rates. Therefore, if you are in a position to settle your RV loan faster in bigger monthly payments, do it. This will help you pay off the vehicle with much less money.

Why You Should Not Get a Long Term RV Loan

RV loans are generally expensive. I mean, they are literally loans to buy recreational vehicles – vehicles that are well-equipped to function as mini homes. So it is not a surprise that the loans are expensive. 

Getting a long term RV loan may sound like a good idea. This is because many people figure that since they only have to pay smaller amounts over a long period of time, then such loans are much better. However, this is not the case.

While an RV loan with a long term repayment period will naturally be easier to pay, it will also be more expensive. Now, as I already mentioned, RV loans are generally expensive. So getting a long term RV LOAN is double the trouble; it is doubly expensive. 

Most people who take long term RV loans do so when buying new and expensive RVs. In the next section, I will show you exactly what to do to get a relatively cheap loan to finance your RV purchase. You can buy a used RV if you like.

It will be cheaper, for sure. You might even be lucky to get one that is in very good shape. However, you really do not need to buy a secondhand RV. Check out the section below to find out how you can finance your RV loan better. 

How to Go About Financing an RV Loan

  1. Set a budget

This is perhaps the most important step when getting an RV loan. The reason why is that there are so many amazing RV vehicles on the market. So if you do not set a budget beforehand based on your actual needs and your finances, you may end up getting excited and tempted to buy something that is more expensive when you go RV shopping.

So set a budget beforehand to avoid choosing an RV model that is expensive and that will require you more time to settle.

  1. Find out your credit score

I mentioned earlier that lenders check credit scores to find out if you are creditworthy and to decide the loan terms they will give you. By finding out your credit score you will be able to estimate how much interest you will be charged.

The higher your credit score (higher than 750) will earn you a lower interest rate. With this kind of information, you can guesstimate if a long or longish term loan is better for you.

  1. Compare lenders 

Once you have your budget and your credit score, it is time to talk to and compare lenders. Examples of organizations that could finance your RV purchase include banks, online lenders, credit unions, and even some RV dealers.

With your budget and your credit score, you can get feedback from lenders about the terms they are willing to lend you at. You can then use this information to choose the best among them.

  1. Negotiate with RV dealers and then with the lender

Once you know which lender offers the best loan terms, it is time to approach dealers. RV dealers expect you to haggle so they inflate RV prices. They usually inflate prices by up to 35 per cent in some cases. So approach dealers and talk to them. Find out who is willing to cut their price for that RV you really want. If you are a good negotiator, you could end up saving $5,000 or more in this stage.

Once you’ve got the price you want, approach the lender you selected in the previous step and negotiate for even better loan terms. Most lenders will listen and offer you something that is more like what you want. 

By following the steps above, you are likely to get a good RV loan that is not expensive and whose terms are easier. You are also likely to get the loan term you desire. Following these steps will also put you in a better position to influence how long you can finance an RV.


The average RV loan repayment period is between five and ten years. It can go as long as twenty years in some cases. The period of time you will get to pay back an RV loan depends on your credit score, your personal assets, and other factors.

Check out our other guides to RVs for more great information.

Remember, while a long term loan may be easier to repay on paper, it will ultimately be more expensive because of interest. So check and consider your loan term and terms carefully to find the best deal for your needs.