The RV market is on a tear — thanks to retiring Baby Boomers.
And, according to a Yahoo Finance report, it’s a good signal for health of the American consumer, given the most important factor in determining the demand for recreational vehicles is real per capita net worth, according to a note this week from Wells Fargo senior economist Eugenio J. Alemán.
“As Baby Boomers continue to retire en masse, the demand for RVs is expected to continue to increase, especially if real per capita net worth continues to improve and the prices of homes, which seem to be helping households buy RVs since the end of the Great Recession, continue to appreciate,” Alemán writes.
In fact, the demand for RVs is insatiable: RV shipments reached 430,961 total units in 2016, a 15.1% increase over 2015 — and the best annual total in 40 years, according to the Recreational Vehicle Industry Association (RVIA). We haven’t seen these levels since the late 1970s. Currently, there are about 9 million RVs on the road in the U.S., and an estimated 8% to 9% of all US households now own an RV.
After RV shipments dropped to a 30-year low in the downturn of the late 2000s, demand is stronger than ever, says Pete Reeb, principal at California-based John Burns Real Estate Consulting.
Real estate developers and homebuilders are even catering to the needs of RV owners. In hot retirement markets across states like Nevada, Arizona and Florida, developers are seizing the opportunity to accommodate the increasingly mainstream audience of RV aficionados.
Take, for example, Valencia Lakes, a community for “active adults” where at least 80% of the community must be over the age of 55. The community, developed by GL homes, has built a 48-space parking lot on its property to cater to RV owners.
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