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Old 18-11-2012, 14:09   #1
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Buying a Beneteau & sailing in BVI

We're a retired couple looking to sail in the Carribean to escape our Canadian winters. Thinking to buy a pre-chartered Beneteau 40-47. Right now looking at buying in the BVI. Anybody out there already doing this and could give us some advice. Would greatly appreciate any help.
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Old 18-11-2012, 14:32   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reza
We're a retired couple looking to sail in the Carribean to escape our Canadian winters. Thinking to buy a pre-chartered Beneteau 40-47. Right now looking at buying in the BVI. Anybody out there already doing this and could give us some advice. Would greatly appreciate any help.
Canadian as well. Done that for 4 years, moved the boat to canada and now have purchased a beneteau in BVI and will continue for another few years. What do you need to know.
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Old 18-11-2012, 14:52   #3
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Re: Buying a Beneteau & sailing in BVI

Thanks for the quick reply. Have a lot of questions; here's a few of them. Did you buy your boat from charter? What size of Beneteau do you have? We're thinking of a 42 or a 473. Unsure if the two of us could handle the 473. We have sailed in the Gulf Islands and the biggest boat we had was a 30'. Our idea is to sail five months during our winter time and store it on dry dock for the summers. We've been told we need to register the boat we buy in Canada; not sure what that involves.
Thanks
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Old 18-11-2012, 16:48   #4
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Re: Buying a Beneteau & sailing in BVI

Hi guys. In Nanaimo now. Sailed a newer Morgan 41 from Florida through Cuba and down to Grenada for 4 years. Through storms, rounding capes and the odd hurricane, we had no problems with a 41 foot boat. Center cockpit helps.

We now have a 393 out of charter. It's smaller than what we wanted but we also are fussy about what the layout should be. We wanted a two cabin boat with a traditional galley. The galley on the port or strbrd side was not an option. I think a 473 is a great boat, but when things go wrong, you need to be confident you can stay ahead of it.

The charter phase outs are generally good, but you need to be on top of it. The boats are general bare minimum equipment and a lot of work can be added to make the boat a good cruiser. We have some minimums we need on a boat.

A boat without a dodger is torture for crew unless they go home in a week. Very few charter boats have a decent dodger and it should be added.

You need good storage topside. You need a yanmar with less than 5000 hours. A good linear auto helm Toilets with mascerator and holding tanks. (Tobago cays is now mandatory.

You need minimum 130 chain with equivalent rode and a good brand anchor. To me the CQR Set correctly will hold under anything the Caribbean can offer.

We put the boat on the hard in Grenada. It's safe, easy and cheap airfare and a great little country.

Email me and I can give you blogs I wrote and answer any questions. After your first season you'll wonder what the worries were all about.
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Old 19-11-2012, 18:14   #5
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Re: Buying a Beneteau & sailing in BVI

Hi
Thanks for the info. Have you registered your boat in Canada or licenced it? You mentioned you put your boat on the hard. Do you pay only for the amount time it's stored or you have to pay an annual storage fee? We going to be spending De & Jan in Puerto Rico and from there we will visit BVI to check out some boats. You mentioned blogs; how do I access them?
Thanks again,
Reza
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Old 19-11-2012, 20:17   #6
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I'm Curently taking classes In Montreal, i will also be living the dream in the Carabians soon, last week we covered ownership, here is what I understand: your boat needs to be licensed in Canada, in your province of residence, if you ever bring here up to Canada you will have to pay taxes when you cross the border, if you leave her in the BVI no taxes, unless there is some local tax? This part I'm not sure. If you ever decide to take here up for a season or two you can always get a marina to open an estimate or work order (its common practice with quebekers that have boats on lake Champlain on the US side) then you can bring her in for 6 months (not sure if it's 6 months or if she has to be out before June 1st...

Do get a license, a simple registration is not recognized by most countries....

Enjoy!
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Old 19-11-2012, 20:35   #7
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Re: Buying a Beneteau & sailing in BVI

Hi
Have you registered your boat in Canada or licenced it? You mentioned you put your boat on the hard. Do you pay only for the amount time it's stored or you have to pay an annual storage fee? We going to be spending De & Jan in Puerto Rico and from there we will visit BVI to check out some boats. You mentioned blogs; how do I access them?
Thanks again,

Hi, We will register the boat in Canada under a Blue Book registration. Our last boat in the Caribbean was also Canadian and we never paid the tax. BVI will also take your registration.

We will probably put the boat on the hard in Grenada (St. Davids Bay). They charge by the month.

My blogs are not online anymore but I can send you a few to your email.

My email is bestcrew@me.com
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Old 19-11-2012, 21:02   #8
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I own a 473 that my wife and I bought as our retirement home. It is a fantastic boat and with the layout a couple can easily sail the boat. I will be glad to answer specific question about the boat if you would like. As info I have also chartered the 393 in St Martin and in the BVIs. It is a great boat but obviously the 473 has much more room and I personally do not believe it is that much harder for a couple to handle.
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Old 19-11-2012, 22:40   #9
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Re: Buying a Beneteau & sailing in BVI

Thanks for the reply. Have checked out 42 & 46 Beneteau in the States. Liked the size of the 46. We're planning on living/cruising for 5 months of the year. This is why we're more interested in the 473. Good to hear you find it OK to sail with 2 people. A broker in BVI is arranging to show us some pre-chartered boats. Anything we should be looking out for when we view a 473?
Thanks
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Old 21-11-2012, 18:58   #10
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Re: Buying a Beneteau & sailing in BVI

What is the difference between a licence and registration?
Pleasure craft licence
A pleasure craft licence provides a unique identification number - commonly referred to as the "licence number" - that an owner of a pleasure craft must display on the bow. This number helps law enforcement and search and rescue officials trace a pleasure craft to its owner. An owner must display the licence number on both sides of the bow of the pleasure craft, above the water line, in block characters not less than 7.5 centimetres (3 inches) high and in a colour that contrasts with the colour of the bow.
The licence is mandatory for all pleasure craft equipped with motors of 10 horsepower (7.5 kilowatts) or more, including personal watercraft.
NOTE: You do not need a pleasure craft licence if a boat is registered. For more information, read What types of pleasure craft do I need to license?
The pleasure craft licence is free of charge, and you can transfer it to any subsequent owner of the pleasure craft. You must carry a copy of the licence on board your vessel at all times. However, a licence is not a title document. You must also carry other documents, such as a document that establishes ownership, to help avoid delays clearing U.S. or Canada customs, or in case of a fine.
Registering your pleasure craft
The Canadian Register of Vessels is a title system that keeps track of the owners of vessels. It contains information on each vessel such as ownership and vessel characteristics, e.g. tonnage, construction material and type. When you register, you receive an official number for your vessel, as well as a unique name. It also provides certain benefits, such as the right to fly the Canadian flag.
If you intend to use your vessel as security for a marine mortgage, you are required to register your vessel.
Registration is optional for all pleasure craft, regardless of tonnage and length, as per the Canada Shipping Act, 2001.
There are costs associated with registering. However, the registration is good for as long as you own the vessel. You must carry registration documents on board the vessel at all times, together with any other ownership documents, to help avoid delays clearing U.S. or Canada customs, or in case of a fine.
Transport Canada provides this registration service. For frequently asked questions on registration, please visit the Vessel Registration Office Web site.
Registering your small commercial vessel:
In Canada, you must register commercial vessels of all sizes. This includes human-powered craft such as kayaks and white-water rafts used by guides for guided trips; but not lifeboats or other survival craft on board a larger ship, which are inspected as a part of the ship’s equipment. A pleasure craft licence is not acceptable for a commercial vessel. You should have your registration documents on board at all times.
If your vessel is no more than 15 gross tonnage, you may register it in either the Small Vessel Register or the Canadian Register of Vessels. If your vessel is more than 15 gross tonnage, or if you want to register a mortgage, you must register it in the Canadian Register of Vessels.
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Old 22-11-2012, 06:56   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reza
Thanks for the quick reply. Have a lot of questions; here's a few of them. Did you buy your boat from charter? What size of Beneteau do you have? We're thinking of a 42 or a 473. Unsure if the two of us could handle the 473. We have sailed in the Gulf Islands and the biggest boat we had was a 30'. Our idea is to sail five months during our winter time and store it on dry dock for the summers. We've been told we need to register the boat we buy in Canada; not sure what that involves.
Thanks
My husband and I bought a 2003 Beneteau 473 out of Sunsail in 2008. We had been sailing a 27' Catalina for about ten years when we made the jump. We have found the 473 to be very easy for the two of us to sail.

We registered the boat with the USCG (previously flagged in the UK) and put her in second tier charter with Conch in the BVIs. We came down and sailed for 2-3 weeks, three times a year. On September 1 this year, we retired and moved aboard. We moved the boat to Puerto Rico to outfit the boat for extended cruising. We are looking to spend the next 2 years in the Caribbean and jump across the pond to the Med (or maybe head to Panama and South Pacific).

We felt the boat systems had been very well maintained by Sunsail and that we got good value for our money. We haven't regretted our decision yet, we believe the boat perfectly suits our needs and goals.

Good luck,
Robyn
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Old 22-11-2012, 06:58   #12
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Originally Posted by Tayzach
I own a 473 that my wife and I bought as our retirement home. It is a fantastic boat and with the layout a couple can easily sail the boat. I will be glad to answer specific question about the boat if you would like. As info I have also chartered the 393 in St Martin and in the BVIs. It is a great boat but obviously the 473 has much more room and I personally do not believe it is that much harder for a couple to handle.
+1 on that one!
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Old 22-11-2012, 07:29   #13
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Re: Buying a Beneteau & sailing in BVI

Our boat was in the charter fleet for 8 years before we bought it, it is a Beneteau 400 so it is smaller and older then what you are looking at. I have talked with quite a few people who, like us bought a previously charted boat. The down side is the boats are used hard by inexperienced captains. The engines have been ran a lot, 5000 hours or more is typical. Make sure you feel comfortable with the survey. Get a survey done by someone you trust if you can't do one yourself. Make sure they fix everything on the survey before paying for it. Expect to spend some more money outfitting it for extended cruising. The boats are a good deal most of the time, but it isn't unusal to replace the engine and transmition after a year or so. Also make sure the surveior is looking for signs of hard grounding.
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Old 22-11-2012, 15:51   #14
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Re: Buying a Beneteau & sailing in BVI

Quote:
Originally Posted by reza View Post
Thanks for the reply. Have checked out 42 & 46 Beneteau in the States. Liked the size of the 46. We're planning on living/cruising for 5 months of the year. This is why we're more interested in the 473. Good to hear you find it OK to sail with 2 people. A broker in BVI is arranging to show us some pre-chartered boats. Anything we should be looking out for when we view a 473?
Thanks
Quote:
Originally Posted by SmartMove View Post
My husband and I bought a 2003 Beneteau 473 out of Sunsail in 2008. We had been sailing a 27' Catalina for about ten years when we made the jump. We have found the 473 to be very easy for the two of us to sail.

We registered the boat with the USCG (previously flagged in the UK) and put her in second tier charter with Conch in the BVIs. We came down and sailed for 2-3 weeks, three times a year. On September 1 this year, we retired and moved aboard. We moved the boat to Puerto Rico to outfit the boat for extended cruising. We are looking to spend the next 2 years in the Caribbean and jump across the pond to the Med (or maybe head to Panama and South Pacific).

We felt the boat systems had been very well maintained by Sunsail and that we got good value for our money. We haven't regretted our decision yet, we believe the boat perfectly suits our needs and goals.

Good luck,
Robyn
Hi Robyn
It was great to get your reply. You're doing what my husband & I are planning/hoping to do. This December we will be in Puerto Rico for 2 months and while we are there we will visit Tortola, BVI to look at some boats. One of my concerns was the size of the boat (we have been checking out 473's on the internet) so it was good to hear that you find it easy to sail between the two of you. We too had sailed a 27 Catalina for 10 year or more in the Gulf Islands. We have been talking to a broker in Tortola. Do you have any suggestions on whether it is better to deal with a broker or go through a charter company direct (we are looking to buying a pre-chartered boat)? Are you still in Puerto Rico?
Look forward to hearing from you,
Mary & Reza
PS Love the quote from Jean Luc.
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Old 22-11-2012, 17:20   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reza

Hi Robyn
It was great to get your reply. You're doing what my husband & I are planning/hoping to do. This December we will be in Puerto Rico for 2 months and while we are there we will visit Tortola, BVI to look at some boats. One of my concerns was the size of the boat (we have been checking out 473's on the internet) so it was good to hear that you find it easy to sail between the two of you. We too had sailed a 27 Catalina for 10 year or more in the Gulf Islands. We have been talking to a broker in Tortola. Do you have any suggestions on whether it is better to deal with a broker or go through a charter company direct (we are looking to buying a pre-chartered boat)? Are you still in Puerto Rico?
Look forward to hearing from you,
Mary & Reza
PS Love the quote from Jean Luc.
We bought our boat through a broker Clive (can't remember his last name) at BVI Yacht Sales. It certainly seemed to streamline the process as our boat was about to be taken over by the bank, the owners were in England and we were changing the registration to USCG, Clive really helped coordinate all of it. I don't know that a charter company would have given us that level of service. Clive is a great guy we are still in touch with, we always visit him when in the BVIs and at boat shows.

We are still in Puerto Rico and are planning to be here until the end of December. We are sailing for the USVI and BVIs at the beginning of the year. My husband and I would be more than happy to take you and your husband sailing for a day and let you see how comfortable you guys would be handling a boat of this size. The boat was hauled last week for bottom paint and new thru-hulls, but will be back in the water the first week of December. We could show you what the boat came with (out of charter) and what we have added for cruising. PM me if you are interested.

Robyn & Barry
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