RV Loans and Financing

There are many types of RV that you can buy: motorhome, pop-up camper, fifth wheel, slide-on camper and travel trailer. There are so many types that they’re classified into three categories: Class A, Class B and Class C.

Just as there are many types of RVs, there are also many loans to accommodate them. Using our SimpleScore methodology, we have invested hours of research and analysis, using expert studies and verified customer reviews to bring you the very best rates that the market has to offer you. These are our top picks for the best RV loans of 2020.

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    In this article

      The Best RV Loans or 2020

      • USAA – Best for long term loans
      • Suntrust Bank / Truist – Best variable-rate option
      • U.S. Bank – Best traditional lender
      • Good Sam – Best for competitive rates
      • Bank of the West – Best used RV option

      RV loans at a glance

      LenderAPR rangeMin. loanMax. loanKey Benefits
      USAAStarting at 5.75%$5,000$35,000Low interest rates for military households
      SunTrust Bank/TruistStarting at 4.25%$5,000$100,000Luxury secured loans also available
      U.S. BankStarting at 5.24%$25,000$150,000Apply in-person or online for extra convenience
      Good SamStarting at 4.29%$10,000$2,000,000Zero Down Program for RVs up to $50,000
      Bank of the West/Essex Credit4.29% – 8.59%$10,000$2,000,000Support from Essex Credit for your RV loan

      Best for Long-Term Loans – USAA

      USAA doesn’t give loans beyond $35,000, so this is not your lender if your tastes run on the more expensive side.

      Fixed APR
      N/A
      Loan Amount
      N/A
      Term
      12–180 months
      SimpleScore
      3.8 / 5.0
      close
      SimpleScore USAA 3.8
      Rates N/A
      Loan Size 1
      Terms 5
      Support 5
      Fees 4

      With USAA, your RV loan is both smaller and shorter than most lenders. USAA caps RV loans at just $35,000, and terms range from only one to 15 years. Sign up for auto-pay, and you’ll earn an extra 0.25% discount off your monthly payments. However, USAA has very specific requirements for the payment you will need, so be careful to check the requirements.

      Best Variable-Rate Option – Truist

      If you want the finer things in life, Truist also offers luxury RV loans are also available up to $1.5 million with low interest rates.

      Fixed APR
      N/A
      Loan Amount
      N/A
      Term
      24–84 months
      SimpleScore
      3.8 / 5.0
      close
      SimpleScore Truist 3.8
      Rates N/A
      Loan Size 3
      Terms 3
      Support 4
      Fees 5

      Both SunTrust Bank and BB&T have merged into Truist for all of your lending needs. The basic unsecured RV loan is provided as a fixed-rate loan by LightStream, and there are no prepayment penalties if you decide to pay off your loan early. There’s also a convenient online application for easy applying, and you can get a 0.25% discount if you sign up for auto-pay.

      Best traditional lender – US Bank

      If you’re in a hurry, U.S. Bank will hook you up with a same-day decision, so you can get rolling that much faster.

      Fixed APR
      N/A
      Loan Amount
      $1K–$25K
      Term
      12–60 months
      SimpleScore
      3.6 / 5.0
      close
      SimpleScore US Bank 3.6
      Rates 5
      Loan Size 3
      Customer Satisfaction 3
      Support 4
      Fees 3

      U.S. Bank isn’t as transparent as other lenders, but a sample loan on the site includes a 5.24% APR for a $25,000 loan with a 48-month term. There’s only a prepayment penalty of 1% if you close your loan within one year; otherwise, there’s no fee. Apply online, by phone or in-person at a branch. There is also a convenient chat feature for speedy service.

      Best for Competitive Rates – Good Sam

      Sign up for the Rate Watch program and let the low rates come to you for an even easier purchasing process.

      Fixed APR
      N/A
      Loan Amount
      N/A
      Term
      48–240 months
      SimpleScore
      4.2 / 5.0
      close
      SimpleScore Good Sam 4.2
      Rates 5
      Loan Size 5
      Terms 5
      Support 3
      Fees 3

      With terms of up to 20 years you can receive extra savings on Good Sam’s already low rates if you buy an electric RV. However, you will be charged an additional 0.25% for certain model years or face a 0.25% penalty if you use the Zero Down Program for loans between $10,000 – $50,000. Good Sam can give you more than $2,000,000 for your RV loan, but you will have to call for details.

      Best Used RV Option – Bank of the West

      You have to come into a branch to finalize the loan, so skip this lender if you’re in a hurry or can’t make it into a branch in-person.

      Fixed APR
      N/A
      Loan Amount
      N/A
      Term
      48–240 months
      SimpleScore
      4.8 / 5.0
      close
      SimpleScore Bank of the West 4.8
      Rates 5
      Loan Size 5
      Terms 5
      Support 5
      Fees 4

      Bank of the West recommends a credit score of 700 or higher to benefit from its many lending solutions. You can use a personal loan if it is under $10,000 for your RV, and Bank of the West partners with Essex Credit for loans up to $2 million. There are no prepayment penalties, and you can receive a 0.25% auto-pay discount off your rate.

      What is an RV loan?

      With some RVs running up to $500,000 and more, most people don’t have the tens of thousands of dollars it takes to purchase a recreational vehicle, so they take out an RV loan instead. This is a form of long-term financing that allows you to pay off your RV over a period of time. Your RV loan can be used to buy a motorhome, travel trailer or camper.

      Check Your Personal Loan Rates

      Answer a few questions to see which personal loans you pre-qualify for. It’s quick and easy, and it will not impact your credit score.

      Get Started

      with our trusted partners at Bankrate.com

      How do RV loans work?

      When you use an RV loan, you are committing to a long-term installment loan that you will pay off over a set period. Many lenders, such as Bank of the West, recommend a credit score of around 700 to qualify, but your options will vary depending on factors like your credit score, payment history and income. Lenders will also consider the year and make of the RV that you want to buy before making a final decision on loan terms and interest rates.

      There are two types of RV loans that you can use: an unsecured RV loan and a secured RV loan.

      Unsecured loan

      An unsecured loan does not require any collateral for your RV loan. Instead, it relies upon your credit score to determine your interest rate and loan terms. In most cases, you can prequalify online by providing some basic details about the vehicle you are purchasing. You can receive funding as soon as the same day you apply, and you don’t have to worry about losing your RV to the bank if you default on your loan.

      Secured loan

      A secured loan is the exact opposite, using your new RV as collateral in case you fail to repay your loan. This can be preferable for some borrowers because secured loans usually carry lower rates and better terms. Just don’t default on the loan, or you could lose your new RV.

      Alternative for RV loans

      If you are not sure that an RV loan is the right fit for you, there are still plenty of alternatives.

      • A personal loan is very similar to an RV loan, but instead of being a specialized loan for just one purpose, it is used for a number of purposes – including your new RV.
      • A vehicle loan is another way to finance an RV if the price is comparable to that of a car.
      • A home equity loan or home equity line of credit (HELOC) is a way for you to use the equity in your home to finance your new RV.
      • Cash is always the preferred way to pay because there’s no interest. It’s always a good idea to save as much money as you can, so you finance the lowest possible amount of money.

      How to choose the best RV loan for you

      There are many lenders out there who supply RV loans, but you will quickly find that the interest rates and loan terms can vary significantly from one lender to the next. These are some things to consider when it’s time to choose the best RV loan for you.

      1. Shop your RV.

      Before you can take out a loan, you need to know how much money you need to borrow. Take the time to shop for your options, and when you decide on the RV that you want, you can begin searching for ways to finance it.

      2. Decide what kind of loan you want.

      Another major factor that will impact your loan is whether you apply for a secured or unsecured loan. If you have fair or poor credit, a secured loan could be easier for you to obtain, because it uses your RV as collateral.

      3. Set a budget.

      Your loan terms will greatly impact how much you end up paying for your RV loan when it is all said and done. Calculate your budget to see what you can reasonably afford each month for your loan payment. The length of your loan will also determine how much you pay each month because you will have lower payments the longer your loan lasts.

      4. Choose your lender.

      There are many different types of lenders, like banks, online lenders and credit unions, so we encourage you to take your time to evaluate your options. Eligibility and application requirements can also vary significantly, with some lenders unable to accommodate the higher-priced luxury models.

      RV loans FAQ

      Your credit score is one way that lenders can determine the risk of loaning money to you. If you have a high credit score and a clean credit report, a lender is more likely to feel confident in your ability to repay your loan.

      The rules vary here, with some lenders allowing you to use an auto loan for lower-priced RVs. You will not be able to use a car loan for a luxury recreational vehicle, but more modest-priced options may qualify for an auto loan, depending on your lender.

      Like auto loans, your ability to use a co-signer on your RV loan will depend on your lender. Co-signers are common for larger-sized loans, but you should check the details of your loan before you commit to any agreement.

      We welcome your feedback on this article and would love to hear about your experience with the RV loans we recommend. Contact us at inquiries@thesimpledollar.com with comments or questions.

      Methodology

      SimpleScore

      The SimpleScore is a proprietary scoring metric we use to objectively compare products and services at The Simple Dollar.

      For every review, our editorial team:

      • Identifies five measurable aspects to compare across each brand
      • Determines the rating criteria for each aspect score
      • Averages the five aspect scores to produce a single SimpleScore

      Here’s a breakdown of the five aspect scores and their rating criteria for our review of the best personal loans of 2020.

      Why do some brands have different SimpleScores on different pages?

      To ensure the SimpleScore is as helpful and accurate as possible, we developed unique criteria for every category we compare at The Simple Dollar. Since most brands offer a variety of financial solutions, their products and services will score differently depending on what we’re scoring on a given page.

      However, it’s also possible for the same product from the same brand to have multiple SimpleScores. For instance, if we compare NetCredit’s personal loans according to our criteria for the best personal loans, it scores a 2.3 out of 5. But when we compare NetCredit according to the criteria for the best bad credit personal loans, it scores considerably higher, since the criteria for the latter review are more lenient (lenders who serve borrowers with bad credit will always offer higher rates, so we needed to adjust our category methodology to account for different industry standards).

      Questions about our methodology?

      Email Hayley Armstrong at hayley@thesimpledollar.com.

      Rates

      We looked at the maximum APR for each lender — the lower their maximum rate, the higher their score.

      Loan Size

      We awarded higher scores to lenders with more generous loan sizes.

      Customer Satisfaction

      We leveraged the J.D. Power 2019 Personal Loan Satisfaction Study℠ to see how customers rated their experience with each lender. (If a lender wasn’t included in J.D. Power’s study, we skipped this aspect and averaged the four remaining aspect scores.)

      Support

      We awarded higher scores to lenders with the most channels for customer support.

      Fees

      We looked at the three most common fees — origination, late payment, and pre-payment — and penalized lenders for each fee charged.

      Ashley Mott

      Contributor for The Simple Dollar

      Ashley Mott is a full-time journalist with over 10 years of experience in small business management. Her work has been featured in USA Today and at Chron.com, The Knot, Yahoo! Finance and the San Francisco Chronicle.

      Reviewed by

      • Andrea Perez
        Andrea Perez
        Personal Finance Editor

        Andrea Perez is an editor at The Simple Dollar specializing in personal finance. Prior to that she specialized in digital marketing content for online learning websites. She holds a master’s degree in journalism and media studies from the University of South Florida.