The recreational vehicle park can become a long-term home for people living simply on wheels or a temporary shelter for travelers. Vacations on wheels are once again growing in popularity, so developing a RV park business plan for a new stop-off for travelers is an excellent way to begin taking advantage of the opportunities. The rising popularity is directly attributable to retiring Baby Boomers who are ready to enjoy life as travelers and Millennials who want to experience nature and explore the country.
Excellent real estate Investment
The first two questions a potential owner should ask are: Do I want to work for myself? Do I enjoy being outdoors on a year round basis? If the answer is “yes” to both questions, then starting a road traveler’s haven in a convenient location is a good choice. Plan on it being a high-yielding real estate investment because of the low overhead compared to a hotel operation.
Get the Highest Return
To get the highest Return on Investment, the owner should try to plan on buying property from someone who owns the property outright and is willing to personally finance the sale. This is often the best way to get financing at a low interest rate and to bypass the intense credit review process that traditional lenders put startups through. A professional consulting company with access to a variety of lenders may be able to provide enormous assistance in finding these types of investors.
Filled with Amenities
The RV campground of today has little similarity to the ones developed ten years ago. Except for the camping lots located in the true wilderness, many now offer internet access, cable or satellite television, community centers with facilities, and other amenities. There are even some stop-offs that offer food delivery and exercise facilities.
The new concept in the modern campground business plan is to plan on offering customers a great experience so they will return again and again during their travels. Of course, the level of amenities offered will depend on the type of experience the owner wants to deliver. For example, a wilderness area designed to deliver an opportunity to get away from city living will want to avoid turning the area into a mini-city with lights and facilities. There is a very low barrier to entry into the industry, with the main challenge being finding and purchasing land and getting the infrastructure in place. Once set up, the space is easy to operate. Find a good location, offer desired amenities, effectively market, and expect to generate as much as 20-30 percent profit.
Setting up the Park
There are some critical aspects of starting this type of new enterprise that can make or break the startup. Put careful thought into the RV park business plan for:
- Location – For the greatest profit potential if catering to road travelers, choose a location that is close to an interstate exit. This exposes the park to a high volume of traffic. If catering to wilderness campers, the property should be located away from the interstate.
- Type of Facility – The enterprise can accommodate people who are traveling long distances and need an overnight stopping place; traffic headed for a destination point like a national park; and long-term campers who are living full-time or part-time in their recreational vehicles.
- Size of the Facility – How many recreational vehicles can the park accommodate? Are there vehicle size limits? What park layout was chosen for parking and traffic flow?
- Infrastructure and Amenities – Every enterprise is different. Some have concrete pads, and most have dump stations or onsite sewage treatment, and electric and water hookups. There are spots offering summertime entertainment, like movies and dances, and enterprises that have a swimming pool, fitness room, snackbar, Wi-Fi, and a host of other amenities. There are also facilities that simply offer dump stations, power, and a place to park. Plan on the cost of installation and maintenance becoming deciding factors as to the amenities offered.
- Marketing Plan – Visitors are the best marketing tool because customers talk between themselves. Establish a nice, clean camping area with the amenities that customers want and expect, and the customer base will grow organically via word-of-mouth. However, the entrepreneur should also advertise in newsletters and brochures, at sales locations, on billboards, online, and/or on television.
Browsing through an RV park business plan sample will give an entrepreneur a good idea of what it takes to plan for startup. It is a document used for landing funding or financing. Potential investors can fund the purchase of an existing facility with an operations history or invest in a startup. Traveler facilities can be very profitable and that make them quite attractive to funders and lenders.
Submit the OGS Capital online contact form to get help with the development of one of the most critical documents needed for long-term success. We offer access to expert consulting and a network of investors.
Illustrative business plan samples
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