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Old 25-11-2013, 13:21   #1
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Purchase a boat for a long vacation

My partner's an academic and it looks like she might be able to actually get 4 months off next summer and I want to go cruising (Pacific Northwest, may be even up to Alaska).

Chartering for 12-16 weeks seems ridiculous ($36000+) so I thought maybe we could buy a boat in the winter/spring and sell it again in the fall. I could handle $40-50k in cash if I knew I was going to get most of it back. Any vacation that long is going to cost so taking a bit of a loss wouldn't be the worst thing.

We have both put in some time sailing and motoring in the 40' range and are still undecided which way to jump although I am thinking for 4 months a nice trawler might be the ticket.

Anyway, I have been trying to do some research about buying for such a short term but haven come up with much, I remember friends parents doing something like this in the Med when I was a kid although I think it was closer to a year for them. So: stupid idea? Good way to lose my shirt? Things to consider?

Thanks in advance...
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Old 25-11-2013, 13:28   #2
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Re: Purchase a boat for a long vacation

there are so many $40-50k boats that you better plan for it to take a while to sell

So add up:
the costs to refit the boat for the trip
the storage of the boat while waiting for it to sell later
the insurance and other costs you continue to pay while waiting
the broker commission of 10% when you sell the boat
the lost expenses for buying the boat
the depreciation of the boat

it is going to be an expensive few months

maybe you should look into getting a crew spot on a boat that is planning the same basic trip
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Old 25-11-2013, 13:37   #3
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Re: Purchase a boat for a long vacation

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
there are so many $40-50k boats that you better plan for it to take a while to sell .........................

........................the storage of the boat while waiting for it to sell later
Both of these thoughts from Sailorboy1 seem to be very true from my observations. This makes me think that there may be an owner of one of these boats that would be willing to lease their "for sale" boat for a few months for a price that would support their upkeep and slip cost for a lengthy time. Insurance arrangements could be made and the voyage could refresh the boat's resume.
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Old 25-11-2013, 13:43   #4
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Re: Purchase a boat for a long vacation

I think I would try to negotiate a long term price and be flexible on the boat or. size. Adding going to Alaska to the list forces you into a very well found/equipped boat vs cruising the San Juans and BC inside and or out to the lower outside of Van Isle is readily done with most racer/cruisers.
What size boat do you need? They were chartering exceedingly cheap Catalinas out of Bellingham a year or two ago... maybe it was an economy thing....?
You could also ask the charterers if they have any charter owners that want to sell.... you could leave it in charter and negotiate the owner's time you want.
Yeah, It's a tough one... I suppose at that cost you might want to buy something if it's exceedingly good shape and a popular model. Maybe negotiate a "resell with a year" lower price with the broker when you buy!
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Old 25-11-2013, 14:00   #5
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Re: Purchase a boat for a long vacation

I would look for a charter company which might charter an older boat long term or contact a charter boat owner whose boat is coming off charter. I have seen this done in BVI. Negotiating navigation limits might be tricky depending on your qualifications.
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Old 25-11-2013, 14:03   #6
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Re: Purchase a boat for a long vacation

Huh, thanks for the quick thoughts. Alaska isn't a must have; I guess I hadn't thought that through. I also hadn't thought that a long term charter would bring much savings—going to have to research that one a bit more.

Any idea what the monthly insurance costs are? I hadn't factored that or the 10% broker fee but I'd looked at the other costs. I think secretly I was figuring it wouldn't sell and I manage to 'acquire' a boat through no fault of my own :-)

I am guessing this isn't going to be as simple as my first thoughts: it never really is, is it?
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Old 25-11-2013, 14:23   #7
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Re: Purchase a boat for a long vacation

[QUOTE=Macblaze;1399844 I think secretly I was figuring it wouldn't sell and I manage to 'acquire' a boat through no fault of my own :-)
[/QUOTE]

well that explains everything

"honey no one wants to buy our boat, I guess we may as well keep for ourselves and sail it"
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Old 25-11-2013, 14:25   #8
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Re: Purchase a boat for a long vacation

There's a YouTube posting by an English guy ( I can't find it right now) who bought a boat off Ebay, alot less than 50k, spent his few weeks vacation sailing down the ICW and left the boat down south on the hard. Figured on coming back the following to do some more sailing. He figured at what the boat cost him he could afford to just give it away when he was done and still have gotten his moneys worth out of it. He thought boats over here were as cheap as chips.
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Old 25-11-2013, 14:30   #9
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Re: Purchase a boat for a long vacation

Here it is.
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Old 25-11-2013, 14:32   #10
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Re: Purchase a boat for a long vacation

I've seen a number of boats for sale in Alaska and the NW within your budget. Google it! A nice 30 ft pilot house sloop would fit the bill.
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Old 25-11-2013, 14:33   #11
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Re: Purchase a boat for a long vacation

What about the weather?

In three or four months there may only be a few time when the weather is really good. Are last minute charters a possibility?

Or maybe a smaller boat, large trailer sailer perhaps?
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Old 25-11-2013, 14:35   #12
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Re: Purchase a boat for a long vacation

Insurance is very minimal in the scheme of things, for that kind of ownership your auto insurance carrier will probably do it. After thinking about it for a while, I'm thinking: Buy the minimum size that works well for you, buy a popular model in good shape and negotiate a great price. (it's not emotional to you, just a tool to get you from point a to point b) Take your trip and sell the boat fast for $10k less than market value.. it still cost you a lot less than a $35k charter!
There's another thought to this also.... finance the boat... not much out of pocket that way at all until it resells.
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Old 25-11-2013, 14:40   #13
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Re: Purchase a boat for a long vacation

Advertise on Craig's List Seattle what you want, there are people out there with boats they are not using and paying moorage on, I dont imagine the upgrade in insurance would be horrendous for them: (or will your insurance company let you loan a boat to a friend?.... I think so... if you specify who it is or make them a named insured)
"Reliable Canadian couple want well found 35 foot sailboat to rent for 4 months next summer $10k"
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Old 26-11-2013, 07:44   #14
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Re: Purchase a boat for a long vacation

Quote:
Originally Posted by Macblaze View Post
My partner's an academic and it looks like she might be able to actually get 4 months off next summer and I want to go cruising (Pacific Northwest, may be even up to Alaska).

Chartering for 12-16 weeks seems ridiculous ($36000+) so I thought maybe we could buy a boat in the winter/spring and sell it again in the fall. I could handle $40-50k in cash if I knew I was going to get most of it back. Any vacation that long is going to cost so taking a bit of a loss wouldn't be the worst thing.
Another thought that might fit within your budget and provide a more reliable boat: you might consider a smaller (25-27 foot) cruiser, like for instance a C-Dory 25 or a Sea Sport. We spent the summer in SE Alaska on our C-Dory 22 and had a grand time. Coincidentally, it was a three-month leave my wife got that made this first major cruising opportunity for us.

We're much more comfortable for the last 15 years now in our 26-footer. It's cozy, but can sleep three adults and has fridge, stove, head, hot water, shower........

Our experience in recent years is that 2-3 months on the water up there costs us $6,000-9,000.
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Old 30-11-2013, 07:44   #15
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Re: Purchase a boat for a long vacation

If you have the money to tie up in boats, it might be cheaper. I met a doctor from Canada, while cruising in the Bahamas, who had been doing that every year to save money for about 4 years. He would hunt for a boat at a really good price, buy it, cruise down and back up for 3-4 months, and then sell it. He said it was working out better for him than any other arrangement he had tried.

But, you have to have money and be able to have it tied up if it comes to that.
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