I hesitate to offer advice since my own life generally lurches from calamity to catastrophe and back, such that the fact that I have managed to end up with my own boat, bought and paid for, is a constant source of bemusement.
Nevertheless, keeping my trap shut has never been one of my strong suits...
Sean, it seems to me that the basis of your machinations boils down to the fact that you don't have enough dollars; correct? That may sound like stating the obvious, but it does bear consideration. Shortage of dollars is a perennial problem for many (most?) of us... I know that I have spent most of my life "on rice 'n beans". There is no simple answer to this problem, but here are a few thoughts... most of them obvious, some of them probably erroneous, but, hell, I can shoot the breeze with the best of 'em.
Not having enough dollars has 3 possible causes:
1. You ain't earning them fast enough
2. You are spending 'em too fast
3. Your idea of "enough" is unrealitic.
From everything that you have posted, I think that it is apparent that #3 can be discounted right away... you obviously know that you don't need to become a billionaire to get where you want to be. That leaves #1 & #2.
I would also suggest that #2, in general, is not really the problem. It seems to me that you and your partner live pretty frugally. Sure, servicing the loan is an issue (which I'm getting to), but aside from that, you guys do it on a shoestring.
So, really, what it boils down to is #1... you ain't bringing the dollars in fast enough. The bottom lineis that no matter how much you cut down on your expenses, you really aren't bringing enough in the door. Living on rice n beans is a good way to stretch your kitty to its maximum, but lets make one thing absolutely clear... it is no way to create a kitty if you haven't got one! Making a kitty is about making more money, not spending less money.
Now, in my experience (albeit limited), there are two ways of bringing in the dollars: a) Working and b) Asset growth.
I think it is fair to say that your earning potential is significant. You have, in the past, had the high powered, well paid job (as, from memory, has your partner). You could do so again. That well paid job may not be what you want to do. That well paid job may not be where you want to be. That well paid job may well make you miserable (but onlyfor as long as you do it)... but it is an option , and probably will always be an option. I'm not suggesting that going back to the rat-race is necessarily the correct answer, but it is certainly worthy of consideration.
Not many of us get rich from working. Truth is, earning $50k or $75k or even $100k as a nine-to-fiver is a recipe for getting by, not a recipe for getting rich. Most of us, as you have probably read elsewhere, made our money through real estate or investment portfolio. There are people who get rich through their day job, but they are definitely in the minority. I only earn a tad over $50k p.a. (before tax), but I have a yacht and a kitty... I sure as hell didn't get either from working (as you know, I got lucky on real estate).
The fundamental idea that you need to get ito your head
is that there is nothing wrong with debt as long as that debt is allowing you to increase your wealth... the obvious case is real estate. If you can borrow money at 6%, but your real estate is increasing in value by 8%, you are increasign your wealth. If you owe the bank at 10%, but your share portfolio is growing at 15%, you are laughing.
I owe the bank around a cool quarter mill, at 6.95%. But my current property is value at 350k and increasing at 9-10% p.a. and my managed fund, although currently only $80k, is increasing in the order of 12-15% p.a. That, my friend. is what is making me "rich", not my shitty 50k p.a. day job.
You owe a chunk of money on an asset that is not increasing in value. It is "earning" for you only insofar as it provides a means for you to earn (i.e. yacht chartering) and is "saving" for you in that it provides your house. Both of these things are plusses, but the bottom line is that when you finish paying off the loan, your 100k investment will be worth... 100k. This is, to me, a fundamental no-no. If you are going to borrow money, that money that you borrow must
be earning more than you are paying for the loan.
Were I in your shoes, I would sell the boat and buy real estate. I wouldn't rush the sale
... be prepared to wait 6 or even 12 months to get a reasonable price
(but be realistic). Whatever proceeds you end up with from the sale
after paying off the loan becomes the deposit for the real estate. Even 10 or 20k can get you a good asset with a 90% or even 95% loan. Get your property even if it isn't where you want to live, even if you don't much like the house, even if it is 100 miles from the ocean... Choose your property for growth, not comfort or pleasure. Go back to working the rat race
. Both of you. Earn as much as you can. Make the loan payments, but put everything else that you can into a managed fund.
Give yourself a target... say 8 years. In 8 years (give or take), your real estate value should be getting close to doubling in value. If you bought a $200k place and have made your loan payments, it will be worth $400k and you will only owe $150k. There is a cool quarter million dollar profit right there. If you have also been making say $1k per month payments into a fund for 8 years, if you started with 10k, your fund will (conservatively) be worth 150k (if you can make 2k per month payments, it is like $330k). So, 250k from real estate and 150k from managed fund. That gives you 400k to buy a boat and have a kitty.... and bear in mind that was a fairly conservative plan.
Now I may be talkingout my ass (as I often do), and the figures I use are only ballpark, but it is what I would do.... your mileage, or course, may vary. To summarise... gotta climb the mountain to enjoy the view.