You probably spent a lot of time choosing just the right recreational vehicle for your upcoming travel adventures. Why not spend that same amount of time looking at how to pay for it? While many RV enthusiasts settle for financing their new purchase at the same place they buy it from, it pays to spend time researching the best RV loan rates for your specific income and credit score. The money you save on monthly payments could be significant. This list of lenders is based on customer service, competitive rates, and repayment terms. Could one be right for you?
The best current RV loan rates
|Lender||APR||Minimum Loan||Maximum Loan||Best for…|
|GreatRVLoan||3.99% – 17.95%||$10,000||$2,000,000||Those with bad or no credit|
|Lightstream||4.29% – 10.84%||$5,000||$100,000||Unsecured loans|
|Good Sam||4.39% – 7.69%||$10,000||$2,000,000||Newer RVs|
What is RV financing?
Shopping for the right RV loan is a lot like shopping for a car. Your loan may be limited by the type of RV you are buying. Certain banks won’t finance older, used RVs, or those outside of the standard RV classes. If you do find a lender willing to provide a loan on a non-standard RV or motor home, expect to pay for the privilege. Interest rates are historically low for all types of RV financing, but the lender can choose whom to work with. If the lender knows its financing a group of borrowers that can’t typically find loans elsewhere, it’s the lender’s call how much to charge (within industry limits).
RV loan rates are the interest rate, aka APR, you’ll spend on your loan over time. You should consider this number just one of the factors in deciding what lender to work with and the loan term you settle on.
RV loan rates vs. auto loan rates
Most people do not have enough cash lying around to pay for their RV upfront. Even if you’re trading in an older RV for a new one, the trade-in value is likely not adequate to cover the new costs. An RV loan is something not a lot of people are well-versed in, but it works in much the same manner as shopping for a car. Many lenders won’t approve loans for older cars, collector cars or cars that aren’t deemed safe for operation. Your chosen lender should be able to help you get the RV loan you need, even if your only experience is in auto loans.
RV loan rates vs. mortgage rates
Many people spend just as much time in their motor home or RV as they do in their permanent homes. That’s led some to believe that shopping for an RV is a lot like getting a mortgage. In reality, the two loans follow two completely different lending standards and are regulated by different government authorities. Mortgages, which are significantly larger than RV loans and come with extra closing costs, will likely have a lower rate than RV loans. This is partly because a home is your collateral when taking out a mortgage, so the bank has a better chance to recoup losses on loan default.
If you are buying an older RV, you might not qualify for an RV loan at all. In this case, it’s tempting to consider a personal loan. Personal loan rates vary, and they may be significantly higher than RV loans. This is partly because personal loans are unsecured. If you don’t pay up, the bank may have a hard time coming after you for anything of value. An RV loan, on the other hand, uses the motor home as the collateral. Even with RV loan rates higher than some car or home loan rates, they are generally lower than personal loans for this reason.
The Best RV Loans of 2019
GreatRVLoan: Best for those with bad or no credit
GreatRVloan is a company that works with a broad range of loan providers. It does a good job of being upfront with its loan rates, even including those with “challenged” credit histories to apply. What can this demographic expect to pay to get the RV of their dreams? It won’t come cheaply. Rates range from 7.95% – 17.95% for RV loans of up to $75,000. Note that this amount won’t buy some of the more high-end new RVs on the market. Those with great credit can pay as little as 3.99% and access loan amounts of up to $1 million or more.
LightStream: Best for unsecured loans
If you are looking to buy a smaller travel-trailer or RV and don’t want to use your new ride as collateral for your loan, you’re in luck. LightStream is the lending arm of SunTrust Bank and offers a variety of loan products for the traveling crowd. In addition to its more traditional motor home and RV loan program, which gives you loan amounts of up to $100,000 and a mix of low fixed and variable rates. This provider is the lending arm of SunTrust and provides unsecured loans to those with good to excellent credit and allows consumers to apply online in minutes for as little as $5,000.
Good Sam: Best for newer RVs
If you’ve traveled in an RV before, you’re probably familiar with the name Good Sam. This company has been a staple of the RV community for decades and now works with buyers to get funding for their motor home or trailer. Its RV loan rates are competitive, provided you buy a newer RV. Qualifications for borrowers include a minimum of 690 credit score. Your RV must be a 2008 or newer, and those made in 2008-2009 will be subject to an additional 0.25% interest charge. Loan terms vary by the amount borrowed, but rates range from 4.39 to 7.69%.
The final word
Even with our list of the best RV loans and rates, it never hurts to ask the seller of your RV what financing options they offer. Some will contract with one of the companies on this list, saving you some time and hassle. If the dealer doesn’t, see what offer it can make. You may be surprised that it’s able to beat the best RV loan rates with more flexible payment terms and no fees, too. If the dealership can’t meet your needs, however, you’re in a good position to search around until you get just the right price for your RV financing.