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Old 08-03-2016, 02:37   #1
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Buying new in France or buying used in the Caribbean?

Dear everyone!

A hundred pardons for bringing up an issue that has probably been discussed many times before, but a quick scan thru all the threads didn't reveal what I was looking for so here is a quick background;

I may be forced to leave my career a few years early due to a slight medical issue, and as there are pros and cons for most things...the pro in this case may be a fair amount of insurence money coming our way.

This just may fastforward our plans quite a bit, and the premises so far is this;
  • My wife sailed across the pacific (La Paz to Nuku Hiva) with two old american gentlemen on a Tayana 37 in 2000. And we both crewed on a Deerfoot 60 from Rangiroa to Papeete.
  • We sail our little racing wooden boat among the islets and fjords of Norway, as well as other mono hulls, typically Bavaria, Beneteau..
  • We have chartered a Lagoon 380 in the Dodecanese (lovely experience)
  • I have read Kanter, White, Cornell and the Dashews, just to name a few and we have decided on a Cat, most likely a Lagoon as our focus (at this stage at least) is safety, comfort and resale.
We went to Dusseldorf and compared three nice Cats, the L42, The FP 40 and the Nauticat/Bavaria Open 40. All of them nice boats with pros and cons (of course..) but to us the L42 came out on top.


Not to many L42s on the used boat market of course, but we might be able to afford an L42 (depends how much we want shorten our cruising budget...) and we have great help in the norwegian dealer so it is tempting to just go to France and sail away next summer on a new boat!


However there is a point to be made about buying a used boat in the Caribbean. It seems there may be nice boats barely used to be had over there, and we wouldn't have to start our adventure with an ocean crossing more or less right away. So the issue remains new or old ? Should be fairly new as we are not keen on spending time refitting an older boat, we wish to go cruising asap.


Very interrested in the forum's thoughts on this, even if it may be an old and perhaps tedious issue for you long timers...still what better people to ask?


best regards,


Oddvar
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Old 08-03-2016, 03:30   #2
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pirate Re: Buying new in France or buying used in the Caribbean?

New or used you are going to have to do a 'Fit Out' to your requirements when the boat is collected.. yet to see a New Boat delivered to Les Sables Ready to Go
The advantage of used in the Caribbean is all the Teething problems (and these exist on new) have usually been dealt with.. and the boat is in/near a tax free island where the re/fit out will be cheaper.. and that's BEFORE one takes the 18-23% VAT into the equation.. this is reclaimable however if you sail within a set timeframe.. usually paid into your account 3mths after the claim.. so its down to how your budget can cope with the 'Extra's' up until that transfusion further down the line..
Whichever way you go though.. Best Wishes..
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Old 08-03-2016, 03:39   #3
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Re: Buying new in France or buying used in the Caribbean?

its not about new or old - but comparing two exact offers sometime the old ones fitted with everything that you need is better sometime a cruncky old boat not looked after is a nightmare... e.g. you need to compare two exact offerings...
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Old 08-03-2016, 03:52   #4
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Re: Buying new in France or buying used in the Caribbean?

Consider some of the Charter companies in BVI where owners of a 1-2 year old boat may have had a change in situation (financial/health) and want to sell their boat before the typical 5 year charter period . Many of these allow for early departure with adequate notice.

Also good deals available for some of the former charter boats coming out. And some charter boats are better maintained than others.
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Old 08-03-2016, 04:06   #5
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Re: Buying new in France or buying used in the Caribbean?

I see your point Boatman! I discussed this with the norwegian dealer at Dusseldorf, and he claims there is no better way to do your shakedown cruise, than across the Biscay summertime then along the coast of spain and portugal. He says to make a list of all that fails and if it is not to serious, continue sailing to Lisbon. Where he has a deal with a yard that will fix everything! (We didn't talk about who would front the bill though )

I have read articles (Multihull world) arguing the pros and cons of old versus new (point taken Vtomanov), a shake down period must be expected regardless. I just have my doubts if everything will have shaken down by the time we get to Lisbon !

As far as VAT goes, we can purchase the yacht in France ex VAT which for norwegians is a whopping 25%! This is a point in favour of bying new closer to home, where paperwork and other formalities are more easily handled, I think.

It seems, at first sight at least, that the caribbean market should bring up som substancially better deals, to cover for the air fare! (even if I do travel very cheap indeed). But as most people of some experience knows; 'The devil is in the details!' I think there is some to be said for buying a proven boat with all the required details already on board and mounted. It is easy to crank up quite a bill as you outfit what you believe you'll need.

I don't know you guys...I am really not sure which way to pursue at this point!
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Old 08-03-2016, 04:14   #6
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Re: Buying new in France or buying used in the Caribbean?

DeepCut! It seems you have decided! The L42 made an impressive show, would be very interesting to hear how you and your ship fares as you start sailing! Please do some posts along the way.

At any rate, we will need to make our decision by august this year, if we are to have a brand new Lagoon 42 as our ticket to freedom next summer. I feel it appropriate to quote the infamous Cpt. Jack Sparrow, at this point; ' A ship is not just a ship...It is freedom!!'

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Old 08-03-2016, 04:32   #7
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pirate Re: Buying new in France or buying used in the Caribbean?

Before you make a decision one way or the other I'd suggest you wait till Monte and one or two other members who've taken the 'NEW' route to chip in..
I just collected the new boats and listened to the owners various grumbles as we travelled South.. so its really hearsay.. and worth no more than the time it takes to read this post.
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Old 08-03-2016, 04:54   #8
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Re: Buying new in France or buying used in the Caribbean?

The new route is a good option if you enjoy:
Having new stuff
Choosing your fit out and additional equipment and buying it all new
Spending time in Le sables and La Rochelle while its fitted and waiting for a weather window to cross biscay (up to two months, collect the boat in May.
Not paying vat if you don't intend to use the boat in Europe.
Don't want much maintainance for a couple of years.
Don't expect too much from the builder and aftermarket contractors. It's not a new car and there may be imperfections or problems you need to deal with yourself (it's a boat after all)

Buying used in the Caribbean (in a French island in euros) is also a good option. It's a very easy place to learn to sail, anchor etc.
I would also consider the Lagoon 400 if the 42 is much more expensive.
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Old 08-03-2016, 06:07   #9
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Re: Buying new in France or buying used in the Caribbean?

Greetings Monte, thanks for your input! Sounds like you've been through the mill then, on the french Cat coast

Much shorter haul for me to head down to La Rochelle though. I do find myself ticking off on most of your points! I am indeed a moderate tech nerd ( just bought a new electric car, fantastic little computer on wheels), so it would be very nice indeed to have a lot of the new toys in town...but not at any price of course.

The L400 is a nice Cat...have had my eyes on her for some time, however I think the move they have done, on the new ranges, with the rig looks very promising! Having a more easily handled main would be very nice, I like the way the traveller is absolutely isolated from the cockpit. (we had a start on the L380, when somebody managed to let the main traveler go on it's track!! Thats no problem on the L400 though!)

The self tacking jib looks like it can work well for shorthanded sailing, even if we are planning the downwind routes. We didn't find it a bother that the mast ends up in the middle of the saloon either. Nice little post-it post, as it were But again...you should feel that it is worth the money!

Then...yet again...the L400 is just short of 12 m, which is the lenght at which berthing becomes more expensive (or so I've heard). Of course some port authorities are bound to claim that the total lenght of your ship must include the bowsprit, and then you're still in the pricier berth

Choices, choices... I thought we had plenty of time, then things suddenly sped up like a catabatic wind burst!

It seems to me that I should prowl the used boat market in the caribbean more closely to find out more concretely what it can offer. I am already on the Catamaran Companys mailing list, but if anyone has other sites that might be worth checking out, hints would be appreciated!
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Old 08-03-2016, 07:15   #10
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Re: Buying new in France or buying used in the Caribbean?

I would buy in the West Indies - the choice of boats is decent, the sailing conditions are fantastic, water is 30 cent degs, haul-out facilities are prime and chandleries are well stocked.

About the only reason not to buy there will be taxes or when the exact model of the boat you want is simply not there.

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Old 08-03-2016, 11:08   #11
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Re: Buying new in France or buying used in the Caribbean?

You should try to talk to cenicero who just posted today "Pacific Seacraft South Seas 61." Looks like he is getting rid of his Lagoon 42 and moving up in size to a South Seas 61 or a Discovery 58. You might be able to get a good deal on his Lagoon 42.
Good Luck!
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Old 08-03-2016, 12:23   #12
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Re: Buying new in France or buying used in the Caribbean?

Quote:
Originally Posted by noylddot View Post
You should try to talk to cenicero who just posted today "Pacific Seacraft South Seas 61." Looks like he is getting rid of his Lagoon 42 and moving up in size to a South Seas 61 or a Discovery 58. You might be able to get a good deal on his Lagoon 42.
Good Luck!
I may be wrong but it would appear that he is looking at the NEW lagoon 42 that is just now available. If i am correct his options for buying used will be extremely small if not non-existent for a while.

I would agree with the others that you would really need to compare the actual deals. There is no "Best" way to buy.

It would also really depend on whether or not there is a preference for an owners version. This would also eliminate much of any charter sells that might become available.

Best of Luck, either way it should be fun!
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Old 08-03-2016, 14:36   #13
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Re: Buying new in France or buying used in the Caribbean?

The international representative for CatCo who was in Toulon, France inspecting used and new Lagoons as well as introducing a new American cat at the Salon there in September would be your best advisor.
Caroline is tops in sales and knowledge. She also regularly checks out, in person, what is for sale in the Caribbean. She resides in Ft Lauderdale, Fl.
View her videos on you tube.
caroline.laviolette@catamarans.com
954.328.9149
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Old 08-03-2016, 16:52   #14
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Re: Buying new in France or buying used in the Caribbean?

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Originally Posted by ObiWanSand View Post
However there is a point to be made about buying a used boat in the Caribbean. It seems there may be nice boats barely used to be had over there[...]
Barely used cats in the Caribbean? I guess thats a rare thing.
Most are ex-charter cats, and those that are privately owned have often been been lived on for extended periods.
Every now and then a deal may pop up by a couple that split up after their first crossing, but thats about it.
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Old 10-03-2016, 01:20   #15
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Re: Buying new in France or buying used in the Caribbean?

Thanks y'all for your input!

We have decided to spend some more time searching the used market in the caribbean, and also to proceed with the 'new route' simultaneously. We will arrange to testsail both the L39 and the L400 as well.

And of course...before all that...await the process around the (still just possible) insurance pay out. Still not sure whether I'll have to head back to the airplane cockpit for a few more years or not.

To be frank...I think I would rather be sailing if the choice was entirely up to me! Time will tell...

Thanks again, everyone
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