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Old 29-02-2016, 11:23   #1
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Maintenance Cost V.S. Property Tax!

What has been your experience with paying maintenance on a boat V.S. property taxes / HOA fees on houses and apartments?

I find that maintenance has been much lower for me (~2-4k / year). I use to pay around ~6k tax + 3.5k hoa on my old apartment.

Plus it feels good to put new things on the boat
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Old 29-02-2016, 11:28   #2
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Re: Maintenance Cost V.S. Property Tax!

What can one possibly have to do with the other?
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Old 29-02-2016, 11:42   #3
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Re: Maintenance Cost V.S. Property Tax!

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Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
What can one possibly have to do with the other?
I decided to liveaboard, in-part, to lower my cost of living.

I feel like many around here have done the same.
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Old 29-02-2016, 12:35   #4
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Re: Maintenance Cost V.S. Property Tax!

Completely unrelated ... And living on a boat isn't always cheaper then living on land.

It very much depends on what you are leaving behind on land and on what boat and where you'll be living on the water.

Based on your comparison:
Property taxes / HOA fees (or Dutch equivalents) I used to pay: € 0.00 / year
Boat maintenance: on average around € 3.000 / year

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What has been your experience with paying maintenance on a boat V.S. property taxes / HOA fees on houses and apartments?
My experience is that owning a boat (and living on it) costs a lot more then not owning a house ...
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Old 29-02-2016, 12:41   #5
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Re: Maintenance Cost V.S. Property Tax!

Gee, I saw an ad for a new home development that includes "$100 per quarter HOA fees!" while most of existing local developments are $400 or more per month.


Do you paint the bottom DIY with the boat careened on a shore every third year? Or pay a yard to haul it, clean it, and apply two new coats of Interlux's finest every spring?


Or maybe, you're like this guy I know, he dry sails his boat. Has it hauled every weekend. And has an incredibly slick Baltoplate bottom job.


I suspect he's got money.
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Old 29-02-2016, 12:47   #6
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Re: Maintenance Cost V.S. Property Tax!

First, I think your question is trying to compare applies and tangerines. For example, most houses are much, much larger than the typical sailboat and have many more amenities. So you're comparing a 35-40' sailboat with a 2000 sq ft house? What would the costs be if you compared a boat with similar room and amenities to your house or apartment? Forget it. Few members of this forum could afford a boat that large.

Second, there's too many variables. Some states have annual taxes on the value of your boat, some don't. Dock space is much more expensive (double or triple or even more) in some areas than others.

Bottom line, I think it difficult to make a realistic, blanket comparison.
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Old 29-02-2016, 14:32   #7
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Re: Maintenance Cost V.S. Property Tax!

Must be wonderful to own a house that requires $0 annual maintenance. Wish I owned one of those.

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Old 29-02-2016, 14:57   #8
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Re: Maintenance Cost V.S. Property Tax!

I think it's a valid comparison. Especially if you are single, live in a relatively small house or condo and can rent, if needed, some storage unit nearby for the stuff that you absolutely need to have, if any. Of course here in Northeast from Nov to May the options are limited but there are a bunch of liveaboards staying put on their boats in the winter. Their downtown dockage fees and expenses are way cheaper than the rents they'd have to pay to be in the similar location downtown but on the land side. And the million dollar views are something to behold, even in the dead of winter.
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Old 29-02-2016, 16:21   #9
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Re: Maintenance Cost V.S. Property Tax!

My property tax alone on the house and land I just sold ran about 6K a yr in Ga. Upkeep I don't know, it mostly came in big chunks, but infrequently, new roof, new plumbing, new heat pump, that kind of thing, never tried to figure an average yearly cost. I know what it cost to refurbish the hose, and it was more than I paid for the boat, by a significant margin.
The boat I have in Fl is not taxed, and I'm pretty much refitting her, but believe upkeep will be less than a house, but it will be $100 here and there frequently.

I'm hoping the boat will be cheaper, and I think it will, the $500 a month that was house property tax ought to keep the boat going don't you think?


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Old 29-02-2016, 17:50   #10
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Re: Maintenance Cost V.S. Property Tax!

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Originally Posted by Island Time O25 View Post
I think it's a valid comparison. Especially if you are single, live in a relatively small house or condo and can rent, if needed, some storage unit nearby for the stuff that you absolutely need to have, if any. Of course here in Northeast from Nov to May the options are limited but there are a bunch of liveaboards staying put on their boats in the winter. Their downtown dockage fees and expenses are way cheaper than the rents they'd have to pay to be in the similar location downtown but on the land side. And the million dollar views are something to behold, even in the dead of winter.
Exactly. Obviously I'm not trying to compare it to a 50 acre mansion lol. Like I said, I'm paying FAR less now than when I was in a 2 bedroom 1,500sq/ft apartment.

And since the boat has MUCH better space management, it feels just as large (to me...).
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Old 29-02-2016, 17:52   #11
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Re: Maintenance Cost V.S. Property Tax!

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Second, there's too many variables. Some states have annual taxes on the value of your boat, some don't. Dock space is much more expensive (double or triple or even more) in some areas than others.

Bottom line, I think it difficult to make a realistic, blanket comparison.
Fair point, but that's why I wanted to get an idea of what everyone has experienced - in order to compare what is out there, not necessarily to compare it exactly to my living situation.
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Old 29-02-2016, 17:57   #12
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Re: Maintenance Cost V.S. Property Tax!

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
I'm hoping the boat will be cheaper, and I think it will, the $500 a month that was house property tax ought to keep the boat going don't you think?
Well depends on the boat huh

Like I said i've been at around $200 / month for maintenance, but I do almost all of it myself - I actually love working on the boat its not a hassle or anything. Its a 34' Gemini Catamaran, so nothing too expensive but it also wasn't exactly cheap lol
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Old 29-02-2016, 18:00   #13
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Re: Maintenance Cost V.S. Property Tax!

Quote:
Originally Posted by TitoSoto View Post
What has been your experience with paying maintenance on a boat V.S. property taxes / HOA fees on houses and apartments? ........................
I have no experience with this comparison at all. I did grow up in a house my parents owned, but I never was aware of property taxes.

I can imagine that I could spend about the same amount for maintenance on my boat as someone might spend to maintain a house,- a new diesel motor vs. a new roof; lawn care vs. deck and hull cleaning; heating, air conditioning, utility appliances....

The annual tax (registration & documentation fees} for my boat comes to about $235/year and I pay about $3,000/ year in marina fees. I've never had a home ashore as an adult, but I understand that taxes and monthly utility fees amount to more than this.

Some say this question might be comparing apples to oranges. Well sure, but you can still determine the cost of an apple and the cost of an orange.

I believe that I live aboard my boat at a cost lower than many. This is likely due somewhat to living on the same boat for 31 of my 44 years aboard. I'm sure people that live in houses do so for a huge variety of costs.
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Old 29-02-2016, 18:11   #14
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Re: Maintenance Cost V.S. Property Tax!

My 35-foot boat costs me more than my 1100-foot condominium (both mortgage-free). Maintenance on the boat is much higher even though boat operational costs are minimal in comparison.
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Old 01-03-2016, 09:45   #15
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Re: Maintenance Cost V.S. Property Tax!

This is a funny comparison. If your consideration is focused primarily on economics then consider that real estate is (in the long haul) an appreciating asset and a boat is by and large a depreciating asset.

Many good points have been raised here but there are so many other considerations that should take priority. When your neighbor turns out to be a crazy person you can't up and sail away the condo to explore new and wonderful areas. When it's raining sideways and Fido has to take a dump do you want to just open the door or lift him onto the deck, the dock and slosh up to the parking lot?

As to annual costs, boats are going to be the less expensive alternative in most areas.
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