RV businesses in West Texas are reporting record sales in the past several months, and many attribute the boost to oil companies. KTXS reported that the shale oil boom has caused hotels, homes and RV parks to fill up in parts of West Texas.
Randy Smith, president of Jerry’s Campers in Abilene, said more customers are buying earlier than ever before.
“These are people that just don’t have a place to live,” said Smith. “There’s no hotels, there’s no housing, and this is just their alternative. So yes, I’ve seen quite an increase.”
Workers are looking for used motorhomes, and he said it’s a struggle to keep up with the demand.
Hanner RV Supercenter in Baird has seen a 50% increase in sales over 2011.
“They’re out of housing so especially out west, all the hotels are all booked up – places for rent and sale are all gone so an RV is the next place to go,” said Connor Sloan, business manager.
He said he gets daily calls and visits from people in the oil industry.
“It’s either companies themselves buying up trailers or the individuals working for that company. So it’s typically men working for the oil company,” said Sloan.
He said RVs are convenient for work where being able to pick up and move quickly is part of the job description.
“A lot of the time with the oil it’s moving constantly, and with an RV it’s just easier to pack up and move on to the next spot,” said Sloan.
Hanner RV said its most popular models have been bunkhouse trailers that can fit up to a dozen people and toy haulers that can haul lots of heavy equipment.