We are fulltime cruisers with kids
. My kids
have spent most of their lives on boats ( 5 days old). We also have a fat bulldog. As such, i am opinionated about this, but take the comments as someone who has at least been there and still is.
I would avoid the often quoted bluewater boats. I find them horribly cramped and generally expensive. I would focus my search production boats. Babies on board are very easy. You need to be conscious about a place where you can put this child that works as a "play pen or crib". For us, we made a padded area in the vberth with a crib side going across to pen them in. Luckily, boats are fairly childproof to begin with and babies are easy.
The tough part comes when they start walking and can climb the companion way. Find a way to lock that from the inside.
The best boat is a boat where you can have some escape area. An aft cabin
with comfortable seating is nice. A berth where you can sit up. The cockpit
cannot be one of these as the hardest part of living aboard
actually comes in rainy weather
or bad weather
when you are all trapped below.
My biggest suggestion is find a boat that is comfortable. The key to making it work as a LA with kids is comfort. This means different things to different people.
We started with a catalina
380. We are now on a catalina
400. Boats to consider over 100k are catalina 42s, 400s, 380s. Other boats might be the hunter
legend series. The 40.5 is a good boat and can be picked up under 100k. Irwins and pearsons also have a lot of room. For long term LA, i would start at about 36 feet and try and find something in the 40ish foot range. If you dont care about sailability, maybe an old morgan
I find many motor boats are spacious but devoid of real storage
. Instaed, a trawler
might be better which is both economical to run and built for living aboard
Hope that helps. Take care. We will see you out there!!