Posted 27 May 2012 - 10:30 AM
Hi Shane - What an exciting way to start a new life together:)! Good input all over this thread so far, concur with Barb that Tripple E knows how to make a more robust winter unit. (They are not all made the same, so research of course.)
Suggest you keep doing what you are doing - reading, and asking questions. Also check out RV.Net, IRV2 and other boards too.
As you are in the San Diego area. A drive up for a 'meet and greet' with Steve Wilson at Holland Motor homes, in San Marcos - would also be recommended. Steve is one of those rare sales dudes, that cares as much about 'getting it right' for the buyer, as he does about the sell.
When we were looking, we did our research, and came up with a list of Must Have's and Nice to Have's (go to some of the RV shows at the stadium, where you can walk thru many units at a time, all in one location.) We then came up with a short list of builders and specific models that we felt would work for us.
I then, from advise by many posters I respect on several boards - went in and made contact with Steve Wilson. Steve has access to units that you will never see on a site for sell. Units coming in on Consignment, units coming in or trade in, etc. The 'good ones' are gone before they hit a lot..
At your budget range, you will need to drop years to get to the quality of a rig that will handle the cold weather. Nothing wrong with an older higher end unit, gas or DP, as long as they have been well maintained. Condition, condition, condition is what you are shopping for. Steve Wilson can act as your 'years of experience' person in looking these things over. And, don't be worried about 'will he be interested in working with me' at this budget range. Steve builds relationships, so the next time you two are ready to move up the food chain, he hopes you will give him another shot. (I also got the same good positive feed back about Steve (can't recall his last name) at California Coach Company.)
Best of luck, have fun, go slow and take your time...
Be safe, have fun,
04 CC Allure "RooII" - Our "E" ride for life!