A recent Single Joint Expert court valuation for UK solicitors saw me valuing eleven vehicles for divorce, including a number of race cars, a Jeep kept at a holiday home in Mallorca and a motorhome valuation for a large American RV.
Having valued all of these vehicles many times over the course of my career, I understood the issues involved and it was interesting to catch up with some of my contacts to discuss the current market trends. The American Fleetwood Discovery 39V Full Slide out American RV motorhome below is unrelated but currently listed for sale through Motorhome Depot.
American motorhomes are quite different to European campers and the used market is radically different. With lower supply and several VAT issues to address, pre-owned prices can be quite a minefield, so motorhome valuation reports need careful explaining for a judge in a Single Joint Expert report.
Motorhome Valuation post COVID
Early 2020 was right before the time when COVID lockdowns began to have a significant positive effect on the motorhome market. In the first part of 2020, several motorhome dealer groups held massive sell-offs of unregistered 2019 models with 10% or more off as the first wave of COVID anxiety swept through the market. Before things got better in COVID, they got very bad and motorhome dealers were terrified of doing no business at all for several years. Putting cash in the bank became a priority.
As 2020 continued and COVID became more familiar, demand for campers and motorhomes spiked, as people eschewed hotels and B&Bs. Motorhome demand was further supported by increased demand for expensive assets when the Government’s financial support schemes gave many buyers additional budget, and others dipped into their pension pots to tick off ‘bucket list’ purchases or to buy campers, motorhomes and caravans to add space at home. This caused prices to jump significantly.
At the start of 2023, motorhome prices were much higher than they were in 2020. A valuation exercise I carried out comparing prices in April 2020 to March 2023 showed a 16% rise in average dealer asking prices for 2015/2016 models with similar mileages. However, recent pricing exercises on Hymer motorhomes and more showed that prices are starting to soften, particularly for older coachbuilts.
An independent Motorhome Valuation can help to settle divorce
The finished motorhome valuation and complete report on this large collection of interesting vehicles was quite involved, but it addressed several important questions that the parties could not agree on. As with most of my reports, there were no questions in the ten-day period after submission, so the whole job ended smoothly.
Hopefully the parties can now go into mediation and agree a mutually satisfactory settlement at the Final Hearing, rather than having to go to court. Court is not the ideal place to pursue a divorce – it does not always bring the best settlements, particularly where pension disputes and classic car collections are involved.