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The Best Value Used Family Caravans On The Market

Sunday 20th August 2017
By Kay Knight
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By Kay Knight

What is it you’re looking for?

Everyone has their own idea of what good value means so you’re best to have a think about what it is that you want from a used family caravan, how many people you need it to accommodate, what facilities you just can’t do without and especially how much you want to spend on it. Once you’ve figured it out you can start your search and don’t forget, you can still use new models for a bit of inspiration in terms of style.

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Our favourite ‘value for money’ used caravans

There’s not just one that stands out here and it’s extremely hard to pick just a few of the best because there really are so many out there on the market that tick all the boxes. It all depends on what’s important for you and your family. Here are some of our favourites and our reasons why:

2 berth family caravan

2 berth family caravan

The Bailey Pegasus 462 (2010) whilst 7 years old, it still comes up time and time again when asking people’s favourite 2 berth. Unlike any other Bailey design before it, the Pegasus’ practical specs didn’t disappoint in 2010 and still doesn’t today. The Alu-Tech construction makes it a stronger and lighter model than many of its counterparts and it has all the amenities and comforts to enjoy all year round caravanning.  It’s a single axle model with a rear washroom, mid kitchen and forward lounge. The lowest priced example we found was £7,795 and in fab condition. We love this one because it really does have everything a family of two needs to enjoy a caravanning holiday wherever it may be. It may be compact but the space is used extremely well.

The 462 features include:- Alu-Tech body construction,  Single axle with alloy wheels, loose fit carpets,  Al-Ko ATC and AKS 3004 hitch stabiliser, centre chest, Al-Ko chassis, Al-Ko mounted spare wheel carrier, Hartal door with bin, Double glazed windows throughout, exterior 240v socket and BBQ point, Status 530 directional TV aerial, Truma 3002 3kw gas heater, Truma Ultratherm blown air system, Wheeled fresh water container (23 litres) Thetford C-250 cassette toilet, Dometic 115l fridge, Spinflo hob, grill and oven, Microwave, CD/Radio.

4 berth family caravan

4 berth family caravan

The Swift Challenger 570 (2010) has a great layout suitable for families which consists of a spacious end washroom with a decent sized shower cubicle, a front lounge area that can convert into a double bed or be used as 2 singles and a rear fixed french double bed. A single axle tourer, it comes with a number of fantastic extras including a full awning and CD/radio and it ticks all the boxes for storage. This caravan can be towed by a medium to large family car, it doesn’t have to be a four wheel drive, despite popular belief. We found one going for £9,999 online; a fair price to pay for all the family memories.

This Swift has the following features: 4 berth single axle touring caravan, front lounge area which can convert into a double bed or 2 singles, fixed rear french double bed, central kitchen area equipped with a sink, oven and grill, 4 burner hob (3 gas and 1 electric), fridge with a freezer compartment, and a Sanyo Microwave, end washroom equipped with a spacious shower cubicle, toilet and a wash basin ,truma ultra blown heating system, fly screens, 2x Dometic Skylights, full carpets & cushions, separating sliding door between front and rear bed, 6x 240v Sockets, 2x 12v TV Sockets, fly screen door, fire alarm, JVC CD/Radio.

6 berth family caravan

6 berth family caravan

As the largest caravan in the Bailey Senator series 6 range, the Carolina can accommodate large families or groups of friends who will find all the facilities they’d need for a comfortable and exciting touring holiday. It’s got four convertible beds in the back sleeping area, as well as two in the front, which can be arranged as a double bed if you’d prefer. Its near-side kitchen area is one of the largest we’ve seen in the Senator range up to this point. We found one of these beauties for as low as £11,995 online but most were around the £14,000 mark. If it’s a large caravan you want, you certainly get it with the Carolina.

It’s got a Spinflo four-burner hob unit, a contemporary oven with combined grill, and a built-in microwave oven, a Dometic 115-litre fridge/freezer, a heated towel rail in the central bathroom area as well as a 1,088cm awning. There are also several entertainment appliances on-board this caravan, such as a remote control 17-inch flat screen television with DVD player and a radio/CD player with MP3 connectivity. Carolina owners will also get the option to reactivate the subscription to the stolen vehicle tracker recovery system for added peace of mind – this can also bring down your insurance premium, so well worth it.

Our favourite luxury used RV

Our favourite luxury used RV

If you can afford to indulge in a bit more luxury we’d highly recommend the 2014 6 Berth Elddis Crusader Tempest. It has a sleek, contemporary style that you’d expect to see in newer models and better use of the space than most of the mid-ranges have. Luxury doesn’t necessarily mean heavier but be sure to check that your car is suitable to tow it before you buy. The extra comfort levels you get with this caravan well outweigh the increase in price; however, you can pick up one of these bad boys from around £18,500 upwards. We also love the luxurious 4 berth 2015 Lunar Delta TS but used, can easily set you back £20,000, even more than the 6 berth Elddis!

It’s 7.96m in length from hitch to tail lights and you have six berths, including a triple bunk stack for better use of space; a four-seat central table and a four-seat (at least) dining area at the front of the caravan. There’s a separate shower and contemporary soft furnishings that have a more homely feel. Other amenities include; end washroom, extractor fan, microwave, fridge, oven, mains electric, water heater, cassette toilet, shower battery charger, blinds, loose fit carpets, on-board water tank, wet central heating system, anti-theft tracker, stereo system, sunroof, twin axle.

Benefits of buying a used caravan

The biggest benefit is how used caravans hold their value much better than a brand new one. The moment you take a new caravan off the forecourt it value will lose a lot of its value so buying one that’s a few years old at say, £14k, could be sold 2 years later for pretty much the same price if it is cared for adequately. We’ve even seen well looked after 10 year old caravans only losing around £3,000 on what the owners paid for it second hand 6 years prior. There’ll almost always be one available in your price range with several means of obtaining one.

The lifespan of a touring caravan is at least 10 years if it’s looked after to a high standard but you often see vans from back in the 70s and 80s still going strong (most will have had a bit of work done to them). These old school models are now in high demand due to the increased interest in the Glamping phenomenon. Static caravans are built to last longer as permanent dwellings but the seals and mastic will deteriorate after time and as long as they are maintained regularly, could potentially last a lifetime. The downside of buying a brand new static caravan is that from the moment you buy it, you’ll be saying goodbye to thousands of pounds of worth in depreciation, much more so than a touring caravan.

Where’s the best place to buy one?

You’ve got some options here but there is no right or wrong route to take, it all depends what you feel comfortable with.

Private Sales

Compared to going to a dealership, the costs of buying privately can be much more favourable. You’re buying ‘as seen’ here so make sure you SEE everything as there are no warranties to fall back on if the caravan is over a certain age. We’d recommend buying one that has a complete service history with its latest one occurring within the last 6 months or so. Otherwise you’ll need to get one done and potentially have to fork out the cash on repairs if needed. It’s down to you to decide whether you are satisfied with the RV before you hand over the money so make sure you know what to look out for before you do. If you can, agree (and get in writing) a return policy with the owner but don’t be surprised if they won’t do it.

Buy from a dealer

Dealers will offer more stock choices, often offer non-manufacturer warranties and provide safety checks on all stock before they sell it, so whilst there are benefits to going to a dealer it will increase the cost. Don’t forget they have overheads like staff salaries and covering the rent for the premises too. Helpfully, the NCC now run an approved dealership scheme that helps consumers to understand the level of standards they should expect from a dealership and the code of practice that they should be adhering to. At you can find out your nearest NCC approved dealers that are part of the scheme.

Caravan and motorhome auctions

There are some great deals to be had out there if you know where to look and a good place to start is BCA’s caravan and motorhome auctions webpage. You can check the lots online ahead of the auction and see if there are any to suit your budget and preferences.

What you need to check before you sign on the dotted line

We want you to have the best buying experience as possible so we’ve put together a comprehensive checklist of things to look out for when buying a used caravan. Use Camplify’s used caravan buying checklist  to help ensure that you’re getting everything you should for your hard earned cash and to avoid any surprises when you’ve handed it over. You shouldn’t even put down a deposit until you are completely happy!

Once you’ve got the keys

Use it as soon as possible – When buying from a retailer, UK consumer rights give you 30 days to request a full refund if your goods are faulty but some retailers have additional refund policies so make sure you ask about them beforehand. Try and arrange your purchase around a weekend when you can take a little trip to test out your caravan. If you follow our advice, the likelihood is that you’ll love your used caravan and won’t need to worry about anything other than where you’re going to take your family next!

Download our checklist to take along with you. 

So what is Camplify?

We are the UK's fastest-growing peer-to-peer caravan hire and RV sharing community. Camplify is just like Airbnb, but for caravans, campervans, motorhomes, trailer tents and lodges. We connect RV owners with holidaymakers in a safe and secure sharing environment. It's free to list and we take care of insurance and breakdown cover while your RV is out on hire.

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