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Florida RV dealers and Sales People recommendations


BarbDan17

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Hello all-

 

We had hoped to be in our FT rig by now, but haven't found the right one yet. We are closing on our house 7/26 and will be heading to Florida to look for DP. We have heard of Lazy Days and North Trail and plan to visit both. Are there other RV dealers which any of you can recommend in Florida? More importantly, are there sales people at these locations which you would recommend? We had an unpleasant experience with a salesman at PPL in Houston in January, so if we can find somebody that hasn't been bad, we can start off on the right foot.

 

Thanks in advance,

Barbara & Dan

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I had a great BUYING experience at Lazy Days. I had a HORRIBLE SERVICE experience at Lazy Days. So that it for what it is worth. I will NEVER do business with Lazy Days again.

 

I had a good service experience with La Mesa in Stuart, Fla. They fixed what Lazy Days didn't.

 

A friend had good sales and service experiences with La Mesa in Sanford, Fl.

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Lazy days is a very large RV dealer we have been there several times. You may get the best pricing deal at Lazy days but their service apparently leaves much t o be desired. If you are going to buy the RV them move on with slim chance of returning for service it may be your best bet. we are long timers and on the road most of the year.We are almost never near our selling dealer.

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Remoandiris-

 

Does your friend who purchased at La Mesa have a salesperson's name you can share? Thanks for your feedback.

 

Richfaa-

 

I believe your experience will be what we are looking for. We don't plan on being in one place for very long, so service at the same place we purchase may be a moot point. Did you have a salesperson at Lazy Days you can recommend?

 

Thanks!

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While there are sales people who I would suggest avoiding, there are very few that I would actually put much trust in. Remember that commission selling was designed to reward the sales people most who sell for the highest prices or who move the units that most people will not buy. This does not mean that there is anything wrong, since the person who pays them is the seller. But it is important to remember that their first loyalty will always be with the person that they are dependent upon for their paycheck. That means that even though they may be fine people, their responsibility is not to you as the buyer but to the seller. It would be no different if any of us were working in RV sales. A hungry sales person will often go to great lengths to sell since he needs his paycheck to feed his family. This becomes a real test of his personal ethics. A desperate person will do things which may not be quite as honest as he usually is.

 

The point is that it is the responsibility of the buyer to know what he wants and to be sure that he gets it. If you want to be sure that you have a professional negotiator working for you, there are buying agents around. The sales person has to be loyal to the employer first.

 

If you are buying new, I'd suggest that you determine exactly what you want in make/model and how configured, then make the dealers who sell that particular RV bid on it. When we bought our last class A, we went to the local dealer and worked up a spec sheet to order ours exactly as we wanted it, then I took my copy of that sheet and covered all of the prices and made a copy which I then faxed to all of the dealerships that handled the model we wanted with an offer to bid for the lowest price. It worked very well and by driving about 120 miles to make the purchase, we saved almost $8,000 on the purchase. Since we were fulltime, we were not going to be near the dealer if service was needed anyway.

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If you know the exact Model # of a RV that you want, contact a bunch of dealers that handle that manufacturer and ask for their best price out the door. That's how we bought our last two RVs and last three vehicles. It was a super easy process with no haggling. We never returned to the dealer after purchasing.

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Hi Barb & Dan,

 

We had an unpleasant experience with a salesman at PPL in Houston in January, so if we can find somebody that hasn't been bad, we can start off on the right foot.

Can you please tell us more about your experience at PPL? We're planning on buying our rig there, so the info will be very useful to us. Please feel free to PM us if you aren't comfortable talking about it publicly.

 

Thanks in advance

--

Vall & Mo

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I can tell you 100% DO NOT go to Camping World in Dover, which is right up the road from Lazy Days. Do yourself a huge favor and drive on by. There's a fairly new dealership within the last couple of years, General RV, but know nothing about them. They're right up the road from CW. They're all right off I-4.

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We visited La Mesa. It's a very impressive facility.

 

During our shopping we found each dealer had certain brands that they carried with very little overlap, so that steered us in a certain direction based on the floor plan we wanted. Every brand and dealer had the floor plan we liked but we had a storage space limitation so that eliminated several brands and dealers (eliminated based on floor plan available at 28' or less and or brand) We eventually landed on Tri-Am RV in Ocala which was 3 and a half hours away, but they had exactly what we wanted, the Cherokee 274DBH, with the lowest no haggle price (their initial offer was well below our local dealerships), and offered us a free spot to test camp at the dealership before we drove back home. This was nice to allow us to walk through and test things then the next day they had a service guy assist with any issues we observed. Tri-Am is located in a beautiful area and the dealership is beautiful as well. I expected a huge place with lots of asphalt and it really looked like a camp ground. The service department was great as they took the time to explain things and followed up with our concerns very well. Tri-Am also has a location in Bulls Gap Tennessee as well, so access to inventory is not an issue. Give them a call. Our salesman's name is David.

 

Good luck

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We sold our motorhome with a month through PPL and had an excellent experience.

 

When you're the buyer they don't really act as typical vehicle salespersons that you may be used to - and that's good as far as we're concerned. We hate having a salesperson tag along. They aren't going to walk you around and answer questions. You're on your own until you find what you like and then they will answer questions as best they can. Keep in mind that this is a consignment facility. They only know what the seller told them. All deals are made between the buyer and seller, not PPL. PPL just relays the offers back and forth.

 

Our buyer flew in from Florida and spent time getting an independent inspection done on his own.

 

Just being there a couple hours to drop our motorhome off we were very impressed at the amount of traffic that goes through - both buyers and sellers. It's in an excellent area of the country for snowbirders heading south or returning north and for vacationers cutting across the country. It's a very busy place.

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Hi Barb & Dan,

 

 

Can you please tell us more about your experience at PPL? We're planning on buying our rig there, so the info will be very useful to us. Please feel free to PM us if you aren't comfortable talking about it publicly.

 

Thanks in advance

--

Vall & Mo

Hi Vall & Mo-

Let me first say, we had no experience with consignment rigs. The rig we were interested in was on consignment at PPL. We were looking at a used DP Dutch Star (I forget the year, maybe '08 or '09). We planned our trip over the Christmas/New Years holidays and flew to Houston. It had been listed for $117,000, but they dropped the price to $114,000 as one of there "Rock Bottom Specials" for the holidays. We spent a full day going over the rig and after a test drive decided we wanted to put in an offer, pending an RV Tech's inspection. We offered an even $100,000. The salesman (Sam S.) said the price was not negotiable. He didn't opt to check with his boss, or with the owner, just a flat "not negotiable". We were extremely disappointed, but walked away assuming this was the way consignments were done. After we got back home to the Chicago area, I continued monitoring the rig on PPL's website and watched it continue to decrease in price. I figured if it was still for sale when I retired in May, we could make another trip to Houston. Unfortunately for us, the rig sold about a week before I retired. Unfortunately for PPL and the owner, the last price I saw on their website was $87,000 before they finally marked it as sold, $13,000 less than we had offered in January.

 

When we entered their building, they had us sign in, so they had all of our contact information. We thought they might have called when they started reducing the price, but we never heard from them. It just left a bad feeling all the way around for us. Hopefully, your experience will be better.

 

Barbara & Dan

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I can tell you 100% DO NOT go to Camping World in Dover, which is right up the road from Lazy Days. Do yourself a huge favor and drive on by. There's a fairly new dealership within the last couple of years, General RV, but know nothing about them. They're right up the road from CW. They're all right off I-4.

Yes, thanks, we had no intention of going to Camping World, we've dealt with them enough here, with our travel trailer. I know there is a General RV here in the Chicago area, and I haven't heard anything bad about them, so I wouldn't remove them from the list and I wasn't aware they had a location in Florida. Thanks for the tip!

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We visited La Mesa. It's a very impressive facility.

 

During our shopping we found each dealer had certain brands that they carried with very little overlap, so that steered us in a certain direction based on the floor plan we wanted. Every brand and dealer had the floor plan we liked but we had a storage space limitation so that eliminated several brands and dealers (eliminated based on floor plan available at 28' or less and or brand) We eventually landed on Tri-Am RV in Ocala which was 3 and a half hours away, but they had exactly what we wanted, the Cherokee 274DBH, with the lowest no haggle price (their initial offer was well below our local dealerships), and offered us a free spot to test camp at the dealership before we drove back home. This was nice to allow us to walk through and test things then the next day they had a service guy assist with any issues we observed. Tri-Am is located in a beautiful area and the dealership is beautiful as well. I expected a huge place with lots of asphalt and it really looked like a camp ground. The service department was great as they took the time to explain things and followed up with our concerns very well. Tri-Am also has a location in Bulls Gap Tennessee as well, so access to inventory is not an issue. Give them a call. Our salesman's name is David.

 

Good luck

Thanks for the information. I checked the Tri-Am website and they only have one DP Class A (in TN), and unfortunately it's not the one we're looking for anyway. I'm glad you had a great experience there, and perhaps your comments will help some other folks. Also, thanks for the endorsement of La Mesa. You're the second person on this string, so we'll give them some time.

 

Safe travels,

Barbara and Dan

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Sorry to hear about your experience at PPL. I love their website. It

is the best website that I have ever seen including new RV dealers.

Good Luck

Totally agree. I love their website. We had heard great things about PPL, it just wasn't our experience.

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We sold our motorhome with a month through PPL and had an excellent experience.

 

When you're the buyer they don't really act as typical vehicle salespersons that you may be used to - and that's good as far as we're concerned. We hate having a salesperson tag along. They aren't going to walk you around and answer questions. You're on your own until you find what you like and then they will answer questions as best they can. Keep in mind that this is a consignment facility. They only know what the seller told them. All deals are made between the buyer and seller, not PPL. PPL just relays the offers back and forth.

 

Our buyer flew in from Florida and spent time getting an independent inspection done on his own.

 

Just being there a couple hours to drop our motorhome off we were very impressed at the amount of traffic that goes through - both buyers and sellers. It's in an excellent area of the country for snowbirders heading south or returning north and for vacationers cutting across the country. It's a very busy place.

Your experience is what we were expecting, but not what we received. We made an offer, the salesman said the price was not negotiable. He didn't say let me check with my boss or let me check with the owner, just "not negotiable". Then later sold it for at least $13,000 less than what we offered. We were also impressed with the amount of traffic they get in there and appreciated that the salesman left us alone while we checked it out. We thought it was a very strange situation.

 

Glad it was a good experience for you. Save travels,

Barbara & Dan

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Wow! That is very strange. The only thing I can think of is that the seller put a definite price on it with no negotiations hoping to make some money on the deal. Then later he wasn't getting offers and desperately needed to sell it so accepted the low offer. Sorry you had that experience but we know others who had good experiences. That's why we put ours there.

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As an observer who has never dealt with PPL, they seem to have more favorable reports than negative, but among our neighbors are 3 who have sold RVs with them and were happy, 3 who bought and were happy, 2 who attempted to have PPL sell and failed, and 1 who says that PPL ripped them off. In sales that would seem to be a reasonably good track record, but who is perfect?

 

I'd suggest that if you are flexible in your search in TX for a motorhome, you might find what you want at Motorhome Specialists in the Dallas area. I have not bought there either but I do know several Escapees who have as well as 2 former neighbors and 1 present neighbor and all of them were happy with the result.

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Wow! That is very strange. The only thing I can think of is that the seller put a definite price on it with no negotiations hoping to make some money on the deal. Then later he wasn't getting offers and desperately needed to sell it so accepted the low offer. Sorry you had that experience but we know others who had good experiences. That's why we put ours there.

We thought it was strange also, but it could be as you said. Perhaps the seller had already set a bottom price. We were really surprised to not hear from them when they started lowering the price. I would have thought if the seller had any idea of the amount we offered, someone would've reached out to us when it started going lower. Either way, it doesn't matter anymore. There is another rig out there waiting for us. Have a great day!

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As an observer who has never dealt with PPL, they seem to have more favorable reports than negative, but among our neighbors are 3 who have sold RVs with them and were happy, 3 who bought and were happy, 2 who attempted to have PPL sell and failed, and 1 who says that PPL ripped them off. In sales that would seem to be a reasonably good track record, but who is perfect?

 

I'd suggest that if you are flexible in your search in TX for a motorhome, you might find what you want at Motorhome Specialists in the Dallas area. I have not bought there either but I do know several Escapees who have as well as 2 former neighbors and 1 present neighbor and all of them were happy with the result.

You're right (as usual) Kirk. :D We had heard glowing reports on PPL and were looking forward to working with them. It could just boil down to what their agreement was with the seller, and as I said, we had no experience with consignments. Hopefully the person you know who said it felt ripped off, wasn't the one we were trying to buy.

 

We'll be checking out everything we can in Florida. If we don't find what we want, we can always head across to Texas. I've seen some nice rigs on Motorhome Specialist, so we'll keep them in mind. Have a great day!

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