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Old 04-01-2016, 04:34 PM   #1
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How to price a used vehicle and build (when looking to buy)

HI, I'm looking to buy and just found a 2013 van that has been modified including a Co Camper van top and build inside.

The Kelly Blue Book price for the van is approx. $19K.

The owner of the camper van says she used this PLUS their costs for the modifications to arrive at the price.

In my mind, I'm not sure the owner should expect to recoup 100% of the modification costs, since like anything, something depreciates once it walks off the showroom floor.

Any ideas about what % of modification costs would be a reasonable sum to offer? My initial instinct is 50%, but I'm open to ideas.

Thanks,
Stephanie (catinmoon)
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Old 04-01-2016, 05:10 PM   #2
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Depends highly on the modifications and the quality thereof... for a nearly new CCV top, I would expect to pay nearly 100% of cost for that. If it's a poorly done sink or electrical system, it's nearly worthless.
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Old 04-01-2016, 10:50 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by catinmoon View Post
Any ideas about what % of modification costs would be a reasonable sum to offer? My initial instinct is 50%, but I'm open to ideas.

Thanks,
Stephanie (catinmoon)
I would do comps based on Sportsmobiles as nearly equipped as the potential purchase as possible.

Add price if the comp is older and has more mileage, or lower quality furnishings and modifications.

Subtract price if the comp is newer, has fewer miles and higher quality furnishings and mods.

Trying to figure cost based on their cost doesn't make sense for you, while it might for them. Figure cost based on supply and demand. If they want a lot and you can get a better van for less, do it. If the same kind of thing is more expensive elsewhere then buy theirs.

Main thing is do you like the layout and the power plant. Those are the two things that are exceedingly expensive to change.

If I tried to sell my 1954 Chevy pick up for what I have invested in the thing people would laugh in my face. That is one reason to buy used. It is almost always cheaper to buy someone else's custom ride than make one yourself.

Also: Go to Sportsmobile.com and click Pre-Owned for a good idea of the high end prices of vans currently for sale. One thing you will notice is that 4x4 versions hold a much higher value for much longer than do the 2WD versions. That is why we bought a 2WD and had Agile Off-Road do the conversion. We now have a van that is worth, comparatively speaking, more than we paid.
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Old 04-02-2016, 09:52 AM   #4
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Thanks for the thoughts. It seems it's always apples to oranges and finding good comps is tricky. I will try and dig up some more comparisons. It's hard to tell if things actually have sold for the asking prices.
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Old 04-02-2016, 10:07 AM   #5
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Any photos? Post them up, in CO? Ford, sprinter? Hard to do comps as there aren't too many full CCV builds out there, I'm getting ready to do one to sell. Figure the tops are close to $7K installed, plus as said, would be helpful to know what systems and cabs are in the van, but you'll be paying much more than 50% value on something like that, especially so new.
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Old 04-03-2016, 08:02 PM   #6
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This is the link. I hope that is the correct way to insert.Travel van
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Old 04-04-2016, 10:05 AM   #7
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Looks like a nice van, but I would say it seems overpriced. Looks to be fairly basic interior mods (while it has stove and sink I don't see city water or propane connections on the exterior, leading me to believe they are in the cabinets). Top is nice.

If I had to guess (which I am, since you don't see, many GMC/Chevys with CCV top), I would put this closer to $30, assuming your $19k KBB value for base van is accurate.
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Old 04-04-2016, 10:32 AM   #8
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Thanks for the thoughts. She said they use "water bottles with 2 holes" under the sink. Grey water goes on the ground. Small green propane bottles. I haven't seen the van and I'm a bit curious about the water bottles--seems they could spill but again I haven't seen them. I will probably not proceed as I have seen nicer builds for this same price; although they are accepting offers. I was intrigued by the automatic roof from CCV as my previous SMB proved too much for me to put up and down by myself (I don't weigh enough and had to hang water bottles to pull the top down!)
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Old 04-04-2016, 11:33 AM   #9
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Yeah, that's what it looked like.. Home Depot cabinet with a pump water system, and a stovetop with propane bottles in the cabinet.. I would say this falls into my above "poorly done sink" - i.e. not worth much.

The CCV top is very nice, and powered. And much much larger than the SMB tops.
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Old 04-04-2016, 03:05 PM   #10
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I don't think it's necessarily that overpriced. I don't think anyone noticed (or commented) that it is an AWD cargo-body van, which are hard to find (and very hard in nice shape). Sure, it's not full 4x4, but some people prefer it (I'd probably take one over a Ford 4x4 conversion).

A quick KBB check shows the van value at ~$22,000, NOT including AWD (they didn't have a selection for that). Add in aftermarket windows in the rear finished walls (which look professionally done by the small pics provided), and a CCV top and I don't think $35k is out of line. I agree that the cabinets, stove and sink don't add a whole lot of value, but if you were thinking of doing a similar homebuild I think you'd easily be at $35-37k, assuming you could find a nice AWD GMC base van to start with.
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