There's lots of good advice given so far. Here's how I see it, everyone has a budget
even if your the Prince of Dubai. So once you decide what your needs are you can look at new boats that meet that need and old boats. You may or may not find that what suits your needs is out of budget
There's no point in comparing a used 37 Hanse Christian to a new 35 Hunter
. You know what I mean ;-)
For us, if we were to buy the boat we have with something comparable new it would be many times the price
we paid, not just double or triple. Then we would need to fit her out the way we want.
Here's another thing to think about if considering buying
Theres not many builders that provide a new boat that's turn key to cruise
long distance but there are some. Even then not every builder
will do everything and he may want you to set up some items systems once its been delivered to you.
Next thing is it more common than not that a new boat will need a good shake down and have a number of things that will need to be attended to before its ready for a long voyage. Remember its not like a new car. Especially the more sea worthy blue water
cruiser type are more like a custom build by process rather than assembly line production. Not everything goes to plan and many have had to take a considerable time with a cooperative builder
to get it right. Others have been lucky but you should ensure you have budgeted contingency time in your cruising plans. Old or new (likely you will need more time with an older vessel)
If you buy new and can get a blue water
cruiser, set up for long distance cruising and free of issues with a shake down then you will be paying a considerable premium. ( Although there are a few builders that provide relative good value in this area if your budget allows.) Also you will be at the mercy of the builder as far as the systems implemented and options offered. This may or may not be a bad thing. What I mean is you may or may not get everything that suits your style of cruising. Just as with a used vessel. Of course on a used vessel you may be able to afford to completely change the system again, well depending on your budget you may be able to do this on a new one too.
So what I'm saying is, yes a used cruiser may need to be considered a bit like a foundation to build off but in many ways so is a new vessel. Of corse a new foundation usually does not need work where a used vessel usually has items of the foundation to tend to.
It really comes down to budget and what you want your finished vessel to be.
As far as blistering goes well it is very true that modern understanding of construction techniques can eliminate or substantially reduce the possibility of its occurring but and this is a huge but. Most new boats do not use them or only use a portion of what should be done even on very expensive vessels. Only a handful of builders do all aspects to minimize the chance of hydrolysis/osmosis and this comes at another premium. Don't think so? Just check how long their warranty is for blistering than remember that many of the old boats that blistered went a number of years before showing any signs.
So if your budget is large enough then by all means there are some great new vessels out there and certainly you could employ all the top in their field people to fit her out with anything that might be needed that was not provided by the builder. Of course if staying simple there may be very little extras if you've selected the right vessel.
I think you are definitely on the right track about keeping things simple. After giving enough time to adapt you feel you need to add something you likely will have a better idea of what and how you want that item or system to function.
All said and done for us going used means we can. Going new means it would never happen.
Apologies for the length of my post.