How to sell your campervan

How-to
Sellers

Listing your campervan for sale on Vancamper is free and is similar to how other classified sites work. Upload some photos, tell us about your campervan and we make your listing available to buyers on our website and iPhone and Android apps. You can update your listing at any time - and you'll receive a notification if a buyer messages you.

Sounds simple? It is! But to boost your chances of reaching the right buyer (and getting your asking price), it's worth investing some time in crafting the best listing possible. This guide is designed to help you do exactly that!

What you'll need to get your listing up

Most quality listings take about 30 minutes - 1 hour to prepare, though if you already have photos and information handy, it can be done in about 5-10 minutes. You'll need to have the following information available:

  • Basic vehicle information (make, model, year, mileage, etc)
  • Photos
  • Price
  • Camper amenities
  • Service history - maintenance records

Creating your listing

Your listing can be created on a laptop/desktop computer, tablet, iPhone or Android device. Download our free iPhone or Android app to get started. Alternatively, click here to list online in your web browser.

The first step is to name your listing. We recommend keeping this simple and to the point - a good recipe is to include the year, make and model of the campervan and the type of conversion (if applicable), for example:

  • 1987 Volkswagon Westfalia Campervan
  • 1991 Bluebird Bus Skoolie
  • 1993 Toyota Hilux Galaxy LN-106 Truck Camper

Things to avoid:

  • Excessive use of caps - e.g. "MUST SEE CAMPER LOW MILES"
  • Listing amenities in the title - e.g. "Ford E-350 Campervan with fridge, solar, inverter, heater, stove, ac"
  • Vague/ambiguous titles - e.g. "Great campervan for sale!"

Pro tip:

  • Most classified sites, including Vancamper, are indexed by search engines like Google. This means they pick up on the keywords used in your listing title and description.
  • The title of your listing is given extra importance by search engines, so make it as reflective of what's being sold as possible.

Photos

Photos are arguably the most important part of your listing. Most buyers tend to flick through photos first - and if they like what they see, they'll click on your listing to read more. Poor quality photos lead to fewer conversions, so it's key to make sure you photograph your campervan as best as possible.

Tips for taking great photos of your campervan
  • Keep most of your shots as wide as possible. This helps buyers get a feel for the overall layout of your campervan. Closeup shots work best for highlighting details.
  • Stick to landscape aspect ratio. The majority of your photos should be taken sideways, not vertically. This helps them display nicely in search results without any cropping or loss of detail.
  • Choice of camera: go with the best quality camera you have access to. A DSLR with a wide angle lens will yield the best results, but if not, any modern smartphone will do.
  • Pro tip: Higher end smartphones often have dedicated wide angle lenses which work great for interior shots. Ask a friend if you don't have one yourself!
  • Clean your campervan! We know vans get messy pretty quickly, but tidy inside/out before taking photographs.
  • Choose the right time of day. Light is everything when it comes to taking great photos. Aim for clear, well lit photos - preferably without the use of a flash. A few hours after sunrise or before sunset works well for this.
  • Don't over edit/process your photos. Buyers want an accurate representation of your campervan - over using filters can make it hard to tell what interior details (like cabinets) really look like.
What photos to take

Try and make sure that you cover all bases - this includes inside and out:

  • Exterior photos (back, front, sides, tire treads, engine bay, underside).
  • Interior photos
    • Start off with wide angle shots that capture the layout of campervan.
    • Then focus on details such as the dashboard, kitchen, cabinets, electrics, solar panels, bed, garage, odometer, etc.
    • Pro tip: Portrait mode on higher end smartphones also works great for showing off details in your van, since it will automatically blur out the background for an artistic efffect. If you have a DSLR, then using a lense with a wider aperture will achieve the same effect.
  • Photograph any flaws/problems (e.g. rust, cracks, broken cabinets, etc) and let the buyer know more about them in the description.
  • Pro tip: the order of the photos in your listing is just as important as the photos themselves. Place your best photos first - leaving complementary photos (e.g. how the build was done, odometer, any flaws/problems, etc) at the end of the photo gallery.

The photos below are an excellent example to follow. They demonstrate great framing and cover a variety of angles - the photos are clear, crisp, taken in good light and have been minimally post-processed.

Photo of an example gallery for selling a campervan

Feature your best photo first

The first photo in your listing is the one which is shown to buyers when they are browsing listings on Vancamper. We call this your featured photo. Treat your featured photo like your profile picture on social media or a dating website. Choose a photo which showcases your campervan in the best possible way. Shots which work well for this include:

  • A photo of your campervan in an outdoor setting (e.g. mountains, desert, epic sunset/sunrise).
  • A clear wide angled shot of the exterior.
  • A stellar photo of the interior.

If in doubt, keep it simple. A wide angle shot of the outside normally works best. Make sure your featured photo is taken in landscape aspect ratio (to avoid it being cropped in search results).

Example of featuring a photo first

Your featured photo is shown first to buyers as they scroll through listings, along with the title, location and price. If in doubt, use a wide angle shot of the outside of your campervan.

Video

A video tour of your campervan is an excellent way to engage buyers, establish trust and cover things that photos can't. They work very well for conveying space and general functionality - for example, showing how a sofa transforms into a bed - or how a concealed fridge slides out. They also work well for attracting out of state buyers who cannot easily view your campervan in person.

Video tours range from very in depth to short and sweet. If you're looking for a way to attract more buyers with minimal effort then a short 60 second walk around video is probably enough to get the job done!

Adding a video to your listing

When you list your campervan for sale, you can include a link to a video on YouTube. We'll display this video on your listing page automatically.

Price

Since so many campervans are custom built, pricing them for sale can be a little tricky. Generally speaking though, there are a few things to keep in mind when pricing your campervan. Firstly, although campervans are the smallest types of RVs available, they hold their value very well - and typically can be more expensive than larger rigs, including Class C RVs (you can read more about that here).

The main reason for this is their size and practicality - the fact that many fit into standard parking spaces, get better gas milage and are much easier to drive than bigger rigs make them very desirable.

Secondly, like all markets, supply and demand and the cost and availablity of raw materials (including lumber and vans themselves) causes prices for campervans to fluctuate. The Covid-19 pandemic is a recent example of this - high demand for campers, limited supply and increased cost of raw materials has resulted in inflated prices across the board.

Lastly, some campervans that are rare or have strong cult followings (like Vanagons or Tiger Pro Vans) always come with a higher price tags. This is no different to how other markets work.

With that said, here are some general tips for how to price a custom built campervan:

  • Try and figure out a realistic used price for just the van itself. Tools like Kelley Blue Book are great for this.
  • Factor in the cost of raw materials and amenities within the campervan (insulation, wood, solar panels, stove, fridge etc).
  • Factor in some cost for the time it took to do the build.
  • Research going rates for similar types of campervans - either on Vancamper or other classified sites where campervans are sold. This will give you a feel for current market value.
    • Note: bear in mind that most campervans do not sell at the price advertised in the listing. The final sale price will only be known to the buyer and seller themselves.
  • Discount your asking price accordingly to account for mileage and any problems/mechanical issues with the campervan.
  • If you're really unsure, ask in online forums or groups for some advice from experts.

If you bought your campervan used - things are a little easier. You can use the previous sale price as a guide, factoring in any depreciation or appreciation (if you added things). Finally, try to take into account the current market value and adjust your asking price accordingly.

How long does it take to sell my campervan?

There's no magic number here. It depends on what you are selling, where you are selling it, how it is priced and market supply and demand. Broadly speaking, if you price your campervan above market, then you can expect to wait longer - anywhere between 2-5 months. If it's at market value, probably between 2-6 weeks. If you price it under market value, then it will probably sell very fast. A quality campervan at the right price can sell very quickly. Many quality campervans that are featured on our homepage gallery sell within one week!

Do take these numbers with a large pinch of salt - the takeaway here is that your pricing strategy impacts the time it takes to sell your campervan - by a lot. What strategy you choose is entirely up to you and will vary from person to person.

Amenities

When listing your campervan for sale, Vancamper allows you to select common RV / motorhome amenities such as solar panels, inverter, fridge, stove and so forth. Simply click the ones which apply to you so buyers can easily search by amenities which are important to them.

Screenshot of adding RV amenities using the Vancamper app

Vancamper allows to you select common RV / motorhome amenities which your campervan has. This helps other buyers quickly find your campervan based upon amenities which are important to them.

It's worth describing these amenities in more detail in the listing description - provide as much information as you can to make life easier for the buyer.

Listing description

If a buyer has made it this far, chances are they interested in your campervan. At this point, you want to make sure they have enough information to make an informed decision as to whether your campervan is right for them. Cover all the bases and you're more likely to get contacted. Leave too much to guesswork and buyers are more likely to be put off messaging you.

This list is by no means exhaustive, but some points to cover when writing your listing description:

  • Amenities: Go into more detail about the amenities of the campervan, including specifics on the type of materials used. This is especially important for higher-end builds since it helps the buyer understand how you arrived at the asking price.
  • Size: tell buyers about the size of the campervan - this includes bumper to bumper measurements as well as the standing height. A lot of folks want to stand up inside their campervan and everyone's height is different. The overall dimensions are useful for buyers who may have limited parking/garage space available.
  • Repairs and service history: clearly list work which has been done as well as work which is needed. Buyers want to see that the campervan has been well taken care of and that the service records are there to justify the asking price. It's equally important to list things which need work - buyers appreciate the honesty. Offering to share a Carfax report or VIN with the buyer is a good way to establish trust.
  • Certification: If you are in a state like California which requires most vehicles to pass smog - let buyers know whether the certificate is valid and whether it has had any problems passing smog in the past. If your camper is exempt from smog - that's also good information to share!
  • Owner history: Let the buyer know how many owners your campervan has had and how the vehicle was used in its past. There's a big difference between vans with only highway miles to those which were used as daily drivers in a city!
  • Reason for selling: It's always good to let buyers know why you are selling your campervan. No one wants to buy a lemon, so let buyers know the reason you are deciding to let go of it.
Listing template

If you are looking for a good starting point for your listing, copy this template and adjust it as necessary:

Beautiful 1987 Ford E-250 Econoline (5.8 liter V8 351 4v engine) campervan for sale.

Size:

18.5FT bumper to bumper

7FT 8" standing height

Build

List your amenities in more detail, e.g. types of material used, insulation, specifics on the electrical/solar setup, etc.

Good:

List what works well, including standout features, mileage, off-road capabilities etc.

Bad:

List what's not so good, including any damage or repairs needed.

Maintenance:

List important maintenance/repairs/upgrades that have been done. Offer to share VIN/Carfax report if necessary.

Closing points:

  • Owner history
  • Reason for sale
  • Whom this campervan is good for
  • Whether the price is negotiable - "firm" or "OBO" (or best offer) are common terms to use
Increasing your chances of selling

In today's market, quality, well-priced campervans sell very quickly. Higher-end builds, or niche offerings (including vintage campers), often take longer to sell. There's no magic number for how long it takes to sell your campervan, but if you are looking for ways to increase your chances, here are a few things to try:

  • Share a link to your listing on social media, Facebook groups and RV/vanlife/campervan forums. This costs nothing and often leads to other people sharing your listing with friends/family who might be interested. If what you are selling is niche/vintage, try and seek out relevant communities/groups online which could be interested in what you're selling.
  • Consider local options. A simple $4 FOR SALE sign (Amazon Link) on your campervan is a great way to attract local buyers. Another option is printing out a flier and posting it somewhere local in your community (the local library is often a good place for this).
  • Listen to feedback from buyers - and update your ad accordingly. This includes adding more photos or information for repeat questions. It also means being flexible on your asking price, and reducing it a little if necessary.
  • We often promote good listings to our followers on social media. So if your listing is decent - we'll help promote it for you.
  • Be patient! It sometimes takes months to sell a campervan - and certain times of the year are better than others. If you're not in a rush to sell, try holding out - chances are the right buyer will come along eventually.
Tools to promote your listing

Listings are free on Vancamper and sometimes that's all you need to get the job done. However, we do provide some additional paid tools to help sellers promote their campervans to a wider audience. Use of these features is optional, but they do provide some additional benefits which we'll cover below.

Homepage Feature

If you need to stand out from the crowd, this feature creates a second copy of your listing on our Homepage Gallery, where it is automatically shown to buyers near your listing's location. Since our homepage receives an enormous amount of traffic from search engines like Google (we're normally the #1 result), you can expect to receive on average 10x as many views as a regular listing.

Homepage features have a few additional benefits over regular listings:

  • Due to the increased number of views, they often lead to much faster sales. It's not uncommon for quality listings featured on our homepage to sell within a week.
  • Since they attract more buyers, you're increasing the odds of getting your asking price. In this sense homepage features can easily pay for themselves - and some!
  • There's less competition from other sellers. We deliberately cap the number of featured listings on our homepage, so it's easier for your rig to stand out.
  • If you are a professional builder, they help raise awareness of your business.
  • Homepage features are automatically shown near buyers near your listing's location.
Boost

For when you need it, Boost bumps your listing to the top position of the search results (on our website and mobile app). Buyers tend to look at top listings first, so it's an easy way to get more views/replies to your listing with very minimal effort.

We find that Boost works especially well after price-drops or when your listing has fallen behind in search results. Boost also gives you a good opportunity to change the style of your listing if your original sales pitch didn't work so well. This might include adding more photos, a video or information covering repeat questions that have come up from buyers so far.

Purchasing listing promotions

All promotions for your listing can be purchased on our website when editing your listing. For more information on this, check out this help desk article.

Completing the sale

Once you've found a buyer for your campervan, you'll need to handle a little bit of paperwork - as well as figuring out the best form of payment.

Accepting Payment

There are several options available here, including cash, cheque, online payment services (such as Venmo, Paypal) etc. To establish trust between yourself and the buyer, we recommend performing the transaction in person, along with a bill of sale and any paper work needed for transferring the title.

Bill of sale

This is a simple sales agreement which protects both yourself and the buyer, and is required in most states to show that the buyer has the right to ownership. This is a good place to indicate the campervan is being sold “as is” without warranties. You can download a bill of sale template for free from eforms.com (or the DMV or DMV equivalent in your state).

Transfer of title

This is a little bit of paperwork which needs to be done to transfer the title of the vehicle from yourself to the new owner. The paperwork varies from state to state so we recommend consulting your DMV (or state equivalent) for the most up to date information here.

Wrapping things up

Hopefully if you've made it this far you have a better idea on how to craft the perfect listing for your campervan.

If you found this guide useful and you're ready to list your campervan for sale, download our free iPhone and Android app to get started. Alternatively, click here to list online in your web browser.

Thanks for reading!

This article was produced by the Vancamper team and may not be copied, redistributed or modified without our express permission.

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