You should definitely take care in following advise on this or any forum as it is your boat, money and risk, not that of the person replying. I do think you can get good, accurate advise based on real knowledge and experience but always best to verify it yourself.
I for example, have dual residence in FL and RI, purchased a boat in NY, USCG documented and RI state registered the boat, kept the boat in RI, CT and now FL. I did manage to do all this without paying an agent to handle any details. However, before going through the process I very carefully researched pertinent sales tax and use tax laws in all the states involved, including copying sections of the various state laws as published on the state web sites and made several follow up phone
calls to the tax offices and boat registration
offices in FL and RI. The research
was mainly focused on the New England
regs as I was a yacht broker in FL and have dealt with the FL tax issues on a regular basis.
I feel pretty confident I can offer an accurate opinion on FL and RI and from what I have learned about other states on the east coast
they do seem to have very similar laws.
It is not really that complicated and I was able to find all the information I needed online. Just takes a little time and patience translating government
speak into English