I also own several Sage rods and find them to be great tools. I have yet to have a problem requiring service so I cannot comment on that aspect.
Depending on where you live, the best place to buy one is at your local or nearest Sage dealer. That way you can have him string one up & cast it to make sure you like it. Other than that Mail Order places usually carry the full line. If you are indeed looking at an XP you cannot go wrong in my humble opinion.