Searay at Flips 2022.

Buying the first boat

When are you going to buy a new boat, you should get to familiar to what is in the market and ask experts to help you if needed. 

They say the best day of your life is buying your first boat, mind you, they also say that the second-best day of your life is selling it!

If you are new to the world of boat ownership, don’t panic! Buying your first boat doesn’t have to be a headache.

What is the intended use of the boat?

You probably already know what your boat would be used for, but for many it is still a doubt.

You should always think for what purpose are you going to use the boat, for fishing, outings, entertainment, transportation? It is also necessary to plan expenses and concerts if necessary.

Before thinking of parting with any money, it is best to get as much advice and experience as possible. Take a sailing holiday, get out on a friend’s boat or charter a yacht for the day. See what boat really works for you.

Not only that but, with how many people you want to go boating? Do you have plans to sleep in the boat, cook in the boat and do you need toilet or showers there? Consider the size of the boat you require. Do you have a growing family? Will the grandchildren be spending a lot of time on board?

In which case, you might need something with more than one cabin.

Before buying, make sure it is the right boat for you.

Motor boats or Sail boats

Motor boats are generally much faster than sail boats, even in extremely windy conditions. Motor boats also have more deck space and more interior space. They often feature more amenities like cabins, restrooms, and other larger rooms. Because they are similar to cars, motor boats use their engines to conquer environmental factors so weather conditions are not often a problem. 

Some disadvantages of motor boats is they rely on fuel  so you can easily get stuck far from the shore if you run out. In certain boating locations, it can be expensive to keep the fuel tank filled. Likewise, when you have an engine or two, repairs and maintenance can get expensive.

Next, since motor boats have shallower drafts and a higher center of gravity, they can’t deal with windy conditions as well as sail boats, so it can get quite scary out on the water at times. Finally, the loud engine noise on most motor boats can be distracting and annoying if you are out on the water trying to enjoy nature.

Sail boats are perfect if you want to connect to the water and weather on a deeper level and enjoy nature to its fullest. It is much easier to relax and hold social events on sail boats because they are much quieter. Sail boats are extremely environmentally friendly because they simply use the wind for power. If you want to travel long distances across open waters, sail boats offer a far better and more economical option.

One downside to sailing is that it can be time-consuming because it requires a lot more training and planning. If you are new to the sport, it will take you longer to understand how to sail because you can’t just turn the key and go like when you have a motorboat rental. You have to understand how all the sailing equipment works, and how wind direction, speed, and ocean tides might affect your trip on the water.

Budget and Financing for your boat

Now that you’ve decided which boat to choose, it’s time to do your financial planning.

Don’t rush, buying a boat requires patience and research. It’s important not to rush into a purchase or make one based on impulse. Many things can lead you astray when shopping for a boat, it may be tempting to buy something because someone else will beat you to it or the price seems right.

But it’s best to take some time before making the big decision, and only pull the trigger on the purchase when all your ducks are in a row. It’s also smart to keep in mind that boats are expensive toys, even after the initial purchase. 

Since the 2008 Financial Crisis, the number of people financing their own boat has dropped, the price of brand new boats have also gone up because of production costs.

If you buy a cheap boat you may need to fix it soon and it can cost as much as if you would have bought a little bit better boat right away. You should also think about resale value. Find out what kind of boats keep their value better. Remember that their are other costs too than just a buying price.

A broker can be a good way to go as they offer marine finance options, just make sure they are FSA authorized. Remember, qualified brokers have rigid protocols in place to protect your money and client designated accounts. 

Another option is a shared ownership, which can help keep the costs down, and there can even be options for investment. A company or some friend maybe can help you with that.

Extras

You should remember that around 10% of the value of their boat (a little less for sail boats as they don’t tend to have expensive engines) will be spent each year on mooring (docking), maintenance and insurance.

What not to do when buying a boat

Now, you have finally managed to decide which boat to buy, which type and what its use is, here are some tips on what not to do when going to buy your boat

Avoid a doer-upper boat that might need a lot of work, as they might not know what they are doing. Let’s face it, you want to spend your time enjoying your boat and not mending it!

The engine of a used boat should not make strange noises such as clicking and metallic sounds. It should also have normal water temperature and oil pressure at cruising speed.

And remember, safety first. Always have in your boat a number of life jackets equal to the number of people who use them, always carry out maintenance as your boat requests

If everything is in order, none of the above problems appear with your future boat and you can keep it financially, well, buy it and be happy.

Max Francisco