Why Isn’t the RV 10 Year Rule Illegal?
Did you know you could buy a brand new RV, and some RV parks could reject it before you’ve paid it off? Some RV parks practice the 10 year rule, and if you’re planning to RV in an older RV, you need to learn about it. Today we’re going to look at why this 10 year rule isn’t illegal and a few things you can try to get around it. Let’s take a look!
What Is the RV 10 Year Rule?
It’s a common rule that many RV parks enforce on RVers. Parks use this rule to keep their RV park looking classy. Many RV park owners want to attract a certain clientele, and a sloppy RV may send the wrong message. If your RV has hit the decade mark, don’t be surprised if you’re met with resistance or asked for a picture when attempting to make a reservation.
How Is the 10 Year Rule Even Legal?
You’re most likely to encounter the 10 year rule at private campgrounds. It’s important to remember that a private campground is no different than any other private company. Just as your local store owner can restrict what you wear inside the shop, a local campground can set its own restrictions.
However, a campground can’t set restrictions that violate discrimination laws. That means a campground can’t deny you based on race, color, religion, sex, orientation, national origin, familial status, or handicap. Other than that, an RV park may restrict who uses their facilities.
The 10 Year Rule Is Discriminatory
There’s a widespread belief that the 10 year rule is discriminatory, but it’s not. Discrimination would be rejecting a person based on their race, age, sex, or sexual orientation, among other attributes. The 10 year rule isn’t denying the person but the RV. The person is free to stay, but not the RV.
This is a hot-button topic among RVers, and RV park owners, as not every person can afford a newer RV. This creates a divide among the classes of people who enjoy RV life. A person with a limited budget could get turned away because they can’t afford a newer RV.
Why Does The 10 Year Rule Exist?
While it may seem unfair, RV park owners have a legitimate argument for this rule. They don’t have time to deal with many of the issues that arise from older RVs. Not every RVer takes care of their RV, and RV park owners want to maintain a certain atmosphere.
Some of the common failures of older RVs include leaking tanks, electric issues, or even propane leaks. No RV park owner wants to deal with the issues that can arise from these. There’s liability involved, and it’s not worth the risk for many RV park owners.
Are There Ways to Get Around the 10 Year Rule?
While some parks may be more flexible than others, you may be able to sneak around this rule if you’re brave enough. Let’s take a look!
Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell
Some RVers will simply not divulge the age of their RV unless specifically asked. We’ve even heard of some RVers shaving a year or two off of their RV’s actual age to make it less than 10 years old.
Regardless of the ethics of this approach, it comes with risks, especially if your RV shows signs of being 10 or more years old. You may arrive at check-in, and the RV park could ask to see your paperwork. You may find yourself scrambling to find a place to stay that night and, depending on the RV park’s policies, potentially losing any deposits or reservation fees.
Ask for Exceptions
It never hurts to ask. An RV park may be flexible on this rule if you shoot straight with them and approach the situation with a level-headed attitude. Your chances will improve if you’re only planning on a short stay. You never know until you ask and the worst they can say is no.
Send Pics of Your Well-Maintained Rig
If you’ve taken good care of your RV, it may not show its age quite as much. You may be able to sneak by the 10 year rule by providing pictures of your beautiful old rig. RV park owners don’t want to see faded or peeling decals, dents in siding, or delamination.
It’s important to remember that RV parks aren’t concerned as much about the inside of your RV. While your RV’s interior may get a lot of likes on Instagram, RV park owners are more concerned about the exterior. Ensure the body of your RV is also in great shape and looks appealing, especially if you plan to use RV parks while RVing.
Have a Restored Vintage Camper? Try This
When you’re RVing in a restored vintage camper, it reminds everyone camping around you of simpler times. You harken back to the days when RVing was less about auto-leveling systems, Wi-Fi, and multiple slides. If you’ve restored a vintage camper, many RV parks will turn a blind eye to the 10 year rule.
There’s something special about seeing a restored vintage camper sitting in the campsite next to you. If you’re planning to RV in a restored vintage camper, make sure the finished product is polished and pleasing to the eye. A sloppy restoration could get you and your RV rejected.
Is It Even Worth Staying in a Discriminatory RV Park?
Some RVers will fight the 10 year rule and try to sneak their way past the rule. However, if an RV park is denying you a stay based on the age of your RV, do you want to stay there anyway? There are plenty of campgrounds available that are happy to take your money and let you stay.
If you do get rejected from an RV park, remember that many state and local parks don’t have this same policy. Check a campground’s policies before making any reservations, especially if the campground is notorious for denying older RVs. Have you ever been turned away as a result of the 10 year old rule?
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