By Brenda Young
Owners Darell and Lori Aaron of the new Cripple Creek RV Consignment and Sales office in Liberty Hill know their business when it comes to recreational vehicles.
The couple moved to Central Texas nearly seven years ago, and when it took almost two years to sell their home in Albuquerque, the couple lived with their family in an RV until settling into their current home in Georgetown.
Spaces are quickly filling up on their one-acre lot and sales office just off State Highway 29 behind the construction site of the new Chicken Express. It took several months, from negotiations to one month of building renovations, to get Cripple Creek RVs open to the public May 1.
“We were in the used car business back in Albuquerque for a little over 18 years, and then we relocated here for the schools, the climate and to establish ourselves, as we’re both real estate agents,” Aaron said. “I went to work at Crestview RV in Georgetown last fall, and we both got the itch to get back into business.”
The mission behind Cripple Creek is to provide a consignment outlet for those wishing to sell their existing RV and to match customers who are looking for that perfect home away from home.
Capitalizing on their knowledge of recreational vehicles and love of camping, the Aarons know exactly what to look for in the incoming fleet of pre-owned RVs in order to ensure quality. Every RV is tested from top to bottom and ready for the open road just in time for summer.
“When we came here in our RV, we ended up full-timing it for about three years, but we’ve always camped, hunted and RV’d—that’s how we took our vacations,” he said. “We like the lifestyle, the people and the clientele and knew we didn’t want to go back into the car business.”
“We offer 90-day contracts on consignments,” he added. “Some of the big dealerships have open-ended deals because they don’t push the used and consigned RVs—those just sit there, and if they sell, fine, and if they don’t, that’s fine with them. When I was at the dealership, I noticed there was an opportunity to provide a service.”
Aaron noticed the RVs that came through large retail dealerships were not going through a full check-up and inspection, and simple actions such as plugging the units into a power source to test key features were rare. He also noticed there were a lot of up-front fees associated with dealership transactions, and there was more focus on selling items not related to the RV inventory on hand.
“With us only having an acre here, we can’t have a storage lot—we need to turn them and sell, so we’re going to move them. We’ll have consignments on Craigslist, eBay, RV Trader and our own website at cripplecreekrvs.com,” the Aarons said.
According to the schematics they are seeing from their website activity, the couple said the majority of their new customer inquiries are coming from families or individuals in the 28 to 40 age range.
“They just want to take their kids somewhere, and RVs are just good, family fun,” he said. “In Texas, the Corps of Engineers and state parks have amazing destinations with amazing prices—it really is a good, cheap way to go and do something.”
The Aarons are planning a grand opening with Bar-B-Que and all the trimmings toward the end of June, just in time to gear up for vacations to kick-off of the Independence Day holiday. In the near future, they also plan to designate a few RV units as rentals, so anyone can have the chance to experience life on the road without the long-term commitments of ownership.
“We will take the RVs out and set them up at Lake Buchanan or Lake LBJ for people that can’t pull RVs. They can set up their reservation online, come by our office to get the keys and just go out and enjoy the weekend and leave it. We’ll come back out, clean it and take of everything for them,” the couple said.