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Buying, renting and selling a motorhome

Freedom, the road ahead and home on wheels behind you. Does this idea appeal to you? Then you must have thought about buying or at least renting a motorhome. In our article, you’ll learn what types of motorhomes exist, how the law regulates them, and other info that will come in handy. We will also advise you on converting a classic car to a motorhome and the related legislation.

12 minutes of reading

Chapters of the article

Types of caravans

Motorhomes and cars come in a variety of forms, each designed to suit different preferences and needs. Here are the main common types:


Motorhomes are self-contained, mobile living spaces that combine transportation and accommodation into a single unit (i.e., it is a car permanently attached to the living unit). They are a popular choice for individuals and families who like to move from place to place frequently on the road.

Motorhomes are essentially a home on wheels, equipped with everything needed for comfortable living, including sleeping areas, kitchen facilities, bathrooms and entertainment systems. This allows passengers to cook, sleep and use the toilet without having to rely on external facilities.

Caravans or motorhomes

Caravans are designed to be towed by a separate vehicle, such as a conventional car or SUV. They offer a range of amenities and living spaces, making them a popular choice for individuals and families who want the freedom of a mobile lifestyle without having to invest a significant amount of money in a motorhome.

Caravans do not have their own engine and therefore rely on a separate towing vehicle to which they are attached via a towbar for moving around. The main advantage of this design is the flexibility to detach and use a separate vehicle for transport on site without having to tow the caravan with it.

Self-built caravans or trailers

This option is becoming increasingly popular. It is the conversion of a conventional vehicle into a motorhome (often vans or decommissioned buses). These DIY motorhomes can range from simple, low-cost spaces to luxurious, energy-saving interiors.

Tip: There is a big community around self-build vans in the Czech Republic. It gathers for example on the Nomad Facebook page.

How motorhomes are regulated by law

There are a number of rules for motorhomes that must be followed. These rules relate to:

Driving licence

A standard Group B licence will only be sufficient for motorhomes up to 3.5 tonnes. For motorhomes (where the car is fixed to the living space), the 3.5 tonne limit applies for the whole car. For caravans (where the car and living area are separate and connected via a towbar), it is the sum of the weights of the two cars.

If your trailer weighs more than 750 kg and the towing vehicle weighs less than 3.5 tonnes, with the total weight not exceeding 4.25 tonnes, you will need a BE licence. For heavier motorhomes, you will already need a C1 licence, which allows you to drive motorhomes weighing up to 7.5 tonnes. Alternatively, a C above 7.5 tonnes.


If you have a new motorhome, your first MOT will be 4 years after you put it into service, and every two years thereafter. This is checked in the same way as for conventional cars, but mainly the VIN code, the manufacturer’s plate, lights, brakes, wheels, maximum speed limit markings, chassis and load-bearing structures.

The roadworthiness test does not avoid trailers either. In the case of a new unbraked trailer, the first inspection must be carried out six years after it is put into service and every four years thereafter. If you have a braked trailer, it is four years and then two years. The inspection is the same as for a motorhome.

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Parking and overnight accommodation

The possibility of parking outside designated areas (campsites) varies from country to country. In the Czech Republic, for example, it is forbidden. On the other hand, you can get a better deal in Scandinavia, for example, where this is not a problem. Camping and sleeping in conventional public car parks, on the other hand, is forbidden almost everywhere. However, overnight stays are usually allowed at roadside rest areas, where sanitary facilities are often available.

You may also encounter problems in some large cities, where even the actual entry of motorhomes into the centre is often prohibited.

Self-build caravan sites

If you decide to go down the route of building your own motorhome, for example from a van or an old bus, you should bear in mind that you should follow certain rules. First of all, you should get a vehicle conversion permit from the manufacturer of your vehicle. To do this, you will usually need a drawing of the conversion with a description (the requirements for the detail of the drawing depend on the manufacturer of the car being converted).

The next step is to register the car with the vehicle registry and fill out an application for a vehicle conversion permit. Along with the completed application, you must also submit the manufacturer’s approval of the conversion, a small and large technical certificate and a drawing of the conversion. If the authority approves the conversion, you can start. If you are introducing gas and electricity to the motorhome, be sure to get gas and electrical inspections from a gas engineer and electrician as well.

Tip: If you’re looking to convert a classic car into a motorhome and need legal help with the transcription, contact us. We will assess your case and draft a proposal for legal services to resolve it within 24 hours.

The last step is the technical inspection. For this, you’ll need manufacturer approval for the conversion, an approved conversion application from the vehicle registry, a vehicle weight (often can be weighed on site), a gas and electrics check (if part of a motorhome) and a small and large MOT. If the MOT passes ok, then you will be given a certificate for the vehicle registry to register your vehicle.

You must not take your new motorhome on the road before it is approved for technical use. And that includes going to the MOT.

Caravan rental

Motorhomes range in price from a few hundred thousand to tens of millions. Such sums are certainly not for everyone, which is why motorhome rental is an option. Caravans can be rented for up to a thousand crowns per day. However, there are a few things you should consider when renting a motorhome:

Check the rental contract

Read the rental contract carefully. Before you sign anything, make sure you are clear about all the terms and fees. Pay attention to insurance details and mileage limits. Also be aware of possible hidden fees, such as cleaning fees, generator usage fees and mileage fees. Make sure you have a clear understanding of all costs associated with the rental.

Tip: If you are unsure about your tenancy agreement, contact our solicitors. We will provide you with a quick solution from the comfort of your home.

Check the condition of the rented caravan

Before you leave with your motorhome, inspect it thoroughly inside and out. Document any existing damage with photographs and a written record. Make sure everything is in good working order. Report any problems to the rental company immediately.

Focus on insurance

Car insurance is usually already included in the rental price, so check the included insurance and inquire about other options. It’s also worth bearing in mind that this insurance is dependent on the rental contract – so if you break it, the insurance won’t pay either.

Tip: Read our article to learn all about renting a car.

In addition to the basic insurance, you can also take out other supplementary insurance. You can reduce your deductible or add on certain parts of your car or situation.

Buying a motorhome

If you’re going to buy your own motorhome, you have a tough decision to make – would you prefer a cheaper trailer or a more mobile motorhome where the car is connected to the motorhome as a unit? Choosing a motorhome involves several factors to consider. These include:

Your travel style and needs

Consider how you plan to use the motorhome. Do you take short weekend breaks, seaside holidays once a year for a few weeks or full-time living? Also think about the number of passengers. Are you travelling solo, with a partner, with family or with pets? Finally, work out your preferred destinations. Will you primarily be staying in campgrounds with full hookups, or do you want to explore remote, off-the-grid locations?

Your budget

Determine your budget for purchasing and operating a motorhome. Be sure to consider not only the initial purchase price, but also ongoing costs such as fuel, maintenance, insurance, and parking and campground fees.

Size, layout and equipment needed

Consider the size and layout that will suit your lifestyle. Ensure that the motorhome provides sufficient facilities for sleeping, cooking and bathroom facilities. Think about storage space and the configuration of the living area.

Make a list of must-have amenities. Do you need a fully equipped kitchen, a bathroom with a shower or a comfortable sleeping area?

Preferred brands and models

Explore the different makes and models of motorhomes. Search for reviews, visit stores and shows to see all the options in person. Consider factors such as quality, reputation and resale value.

If you’re considering a motorhome, take it for a test drive to assess handling and comfort. For motorhomes, request a viewing to understand the layout and features.

New X used motorhome

One of the biggest dilemmas can be the choice between getting a new motorhome or preferring a second-hand motorhome from a second-hand dealership. That’s why we bring you their pros and cons to help you make your decision.

Buying a new motorhome


  • Reliability: new motorhomes are in perfect condition, plus they come with a warranty in case something goes wrong. This, of course, comes with a longer service life.
  • Advanced features: new motorhomes have the latest technology, safety features and equipment to make your travels more comfortable and safer.
  • Customisation: you can tailor your new motorhome to suit your specific needs, including interior choices, layout and optional features.
  • Easier financing: It’s often easier to secure financing for a new motorhome than a used one, and interest rates tend to be lower.


  • Higher cost: New motorhomes are significantly more expensive than used ones.
  • Depreciation: New motorhomes depreciate quickly in the first few years, which means you could lose a significant amount of money if you decide to sell.
  • Limited bargaining power: The price of a new motorhome is fixed and not negotiable.

Buying a used motorhome from a second-hand dealer or directly from the owner


  • Lower cost: Used motorhomes are significantly more affordable than new ones.
  • Less depreciation: the most significant depreciation has already occurred, so you’re less likely to lose as much money when you eventually sell the car.
  • Bargaining power: There is often room to negotiate the price of a used motorhome, which can get you a better deal.
  • Vintage look: some people appreciate the charm and character of older models, which can offer a unique travel experience.

Tip: If you are going to buy a used car from a private person, make sure you have a lawyer check the contract of sale.


  • Uncertain history: it may be impossible to find out the full history of a used motorhome, such as traffic accidents and subsequent damage. Therefore, a used motorhome may have hidden defects or require extensive repairs that are not apparent at first glance.
  • Outdated features: older motorhomes may lack modern amenities, technology, and safety features, so your ride won’t be as comfortable or safe as a new vehicle.
  • Lack of warranty: used motorhomes may not be covered by a warranty or may have limited warranties, leaving the cost of repairs to you.
  • Higher maintenance costs: An older motorhome will require more maintenance and repairs, which may offset the initial savings from the purchase.

Compulsory insurance for motorhome

Whatever type of motorhome you choose, you won’t escape the basic obligation of compulsory insurance. This is compulsory for all motor vehicles. Even though the motorhome does not have an engine, it is still covered by compulsory insurance. This is because it has a registration plate and a technical certificate.

Tip: Read our article to find out how to claim compensation in a car accident.

Compulsory third party insurance covers damage to other people’s property caused by you while driving your car, or damage to your health. What it doesn’t cover is damage to your car, so it’s definitely worth taking out breakdown insurance.

Selling a motorhome

Is it time to part with your beloved motorhome? Whether it’s because you’re looking for an upgrade or you simply can’t hit the road as often as you used to, selling can be quite a process. So what do you need to look out for?

Setting the right price

Determining the right price for your motorhome is essential. So look for what similar types of motorhomes are selling for. Also consider the age, condition, features and any recent updates to your motorhome when setting a competitive price.

Getting the sales contract right

Once you’ve found a buyer, it’s time to draw up a purchase agreement. We definitely recommend you put this in writing and have a lawyer draw it up. If you contact us, we will make sure that the sale of your motorhome is legally sound and free of any confusion or loopholes. You can be signing in as little as 3 days.

In addition to the sales contract, a transfer of ownership also requires a transfer of title at the vehicle registry. Both you and the new owner (or only one of you with a signed power of attorney from the other) must apply for the transfer. However, you must remember that you must also provide the registration report when applying for the transfer.

Termination of compulsory liability and ecological tax

You also need to terminate your compulsory liability insurance, as it does not terminate by itself when you sell your motorhome. The buyer must in turn take out the compulsory insurance. If the motorhome falls under the EURO 0, 1 or 2 standard, then you must also pay the environmental tax.

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Author of the article

JUDr. Ondřej Preuss, Ph.D.

Ondřej is the attorney who came up with the idea of providing legal services online. He's been earning his living through legal services for more than 10 years. He especially likes to help clients who may have given up hope in solving their legal issues at work, for example with real estate transfers or copyright licenses.

  • Law, Ph.D, Pf UK in Prague
  • Law, L’université Nancy-II, Nancy
  • Law, Master’s degree (Mgr.), Pf UK in Prague
  • International Territorial Studies (Bc.), FSV UK in Prague

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