I posted this a while back in another thread, but in light of some recent comments and conversations, I think it might need to be said again ... and maybe made a "sticky" of (we'll let the Admins. figure that one out).
For all the folks complaining about the perceived high prices of manufactured or custom built
teardrops, I think a little bit of historical perspective is in order:
From the late 1940s and throughout the 1950s, the cost of your typical 4x8 or 4x10 assembly-line mass-produced teardrop (KIT, Kenskill, Modernistic/Cub, Benroy, etc) was on average about 1/3 the cost of your typical full-size family sedan (read V-8 and comfortable seating for 6 or more). If you want to put that in round figures, the car was about $1,500 and the teardrop was about $500. Carrying that ratio into today's market, your typical 4x8 or 4x10 Little Guy should be selling in the range of $8-$10,000 ... when is the last time you saw a standard 4x8/4x10
Little Guy go for $8-$10 K ...
...? Yes, modern technology and building methods have been able to reduce the building time & costs of today's assembly-line teardrops, but in the overall picture, it's only made a slight difference.
Here, though, we're talking about semi-production and custom-built
teardrops, with amenities far beyond what the typical KIT, Kenskill, etc., ever thought of providing, and (for a custom-built) you can figure on at least twice the construction time and considerably more in materials costs. So, I don't really think prices of $15 to even $20,000 (in some cases) is out of line.
I know this is primarily a DIY-focused Forum, and it's tough for folks struggling to put $3,000 or $4,000 into their builds to relate to the selling prices of commercially-produced trailers, but the "Rule of Thirds" applies to these figures as well ... in a production situation
, you take the cost of materials and multiply it by 3 to get your fair value
selling price. And if you have employees (beyond your family members), you also need to factor in the additional costs of all the various benefits needed.
So, give these manufacturers and custom builders a little more slack ... as a former Mfg., myself, I know what it takes to bring a teardrop to market and try
to make a little bit
of a profit ('cause, believer me, if you're not making a profit, you're making a hole that will take a l-o-n-g time to crawl out of!).
Grist for the mill, all IMHO (and hard-earned experience) ...