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Old 30-01-2017, 03:21   #1
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Rotational liveaboard family of 3, feasable or dream?

Regards fellow sailors.

Iv read many of the forums posts and now am a member to share my story in attempt to get some direction as I make the transition. I will make this short and sweet as possible.

Im 29 yr South African working as a rotational (2month on 2 month off) marine engineer. Sailing experience: RYA yachtmaster (expired), recreational.
My wife is 30 yr American & French citizen, soon to be unemployed. Sailing experience: very liitle, has great sea legs and very keen. (I proposed to her on a week sailboat charter at 30 weeks pregnant in Mallorca, Spain)
My son 16mo. I could write for days... <3

STORY: We both clearly are passionate for the sea; career, spearfishing, divemaster, sailing, surfers, fishing, outdoor/ wildlife enthusiasts etc. Plan was to retire on a boat for as long as we felt necessary however we feel with the unique circumstances at work, why not rotation-ally live aboard for 4 years before my son goes to school in 4 years time. (And then again when we retired) Combination of property overpriced in FL, complacency with my time as a youth makes me want to be out on the water, spending QUALITY time with the family.

PLAN: Buy a boat cash, cruise 2 months during off rotation and then tie/ lay up, work 2 months, cruise 2 months etc.
Wife and son can stay onboard or fly back to Florida and live with Granny and friends whilst Im away. (she is from FL)

OUTPUT FROM FORUM:
Please feel free to give me your advice if Im dreaming or if this is feasible. Id like to use the boat a lot so charter and shares is not feasible. The main unknown for me is the spider web of buying, registering, flag, name, vat, docking, insurance, permits, licencing. etc as a south african
Reference these bulletins to build a better picture:
- Boat value $60-80k, a production 38-42' bavaria or benny cc. preferably kitted for liveaboard (may be looking at 100k) In my mind thats a house deposit.
- cruising ALL of the caribbean (passport permitting)
- will have passive income sufficient for paying for the boat to sit whilst not being used. ST Thomas as a base? $1k pcm?
- Wife has duel citizenship (Aid in paperwork/ purchase etc?)
- I will only have RSA passport although married (financial reasons i wont apply for citizen) but I do hold Schengen visa (entry into all EU if we cruise there) and a USA tourist/ business visa.

Is there a link or is best bet just starting from scratch with a broker regarding the buying. I feel like with cash and the help of my wife's USA citizenship we can make it somewhat an easy process. Feel like boats in Greece may be on the cheap at the moment

Thank you all.
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Old 30-01-2017, 06:36   #2
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Re: Rotational liveaboard family of 3, feasable or dream?

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, SeaG.
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Old 30-01-2017, 23:51   #3
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Re: Rotational liveaboard family of 3, feasable or dream?

Welcome aboard, Sea G.

Everything will be complicated, and just to help, it's in a state of flux, anyway.

You will have to plan around hurricane season in the Caribbean, and verify where you can leave the boat more or less safely, which brings up the insurance issue, becausse usually, named storms are not covered.

Most likely you will want to find somewhere out of the hurricane/cyclone belt, but where there is interesting cruising, as well.

Good luck with your sketching out of a plan: so many variables, so little time!

Ann
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Old 31-01-2017, 05:17   #4
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Re: Rotational liveaboard family of 3, feasable or dream?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SeaG View Post
STORY: We both clearly are passionate for the sea; career, spearfishing, divemaster, sailing, surfers, fishing, outdoor/ wildlife enthusiasts etc. Plan was to retire on a boat for as long as we felt necessary however we feel with the unique circumstances at work, why not rotation-ally live aboard for 4 years before my son goes to school in 4 years time. (And then again when we retired) Combination of property overpriced in FL, complacency with my time as a youth makes me want to be out on the water, spending QUALITY time with the family.

PLAN: Buy a boat cash, cruise 2 months during off rotation and then tie/ lay up, work 2 months, cruise 2 months etc.
Wife and son can stay onboard or fly back to Florida and live with Granny and friends whilst Im away. (she is from FL)

Sounds OK, conceptually.

Yes, lots of details to work through, but nothing insurmountable.

I think I don't see where you're currently based... but in any case, I suspect the nature of your rotational employment will mean you need to be near a decent airport to go to/return from work sessions. Wouldn't have to be the same decent airport every time, right? (I don't remember St. Thomas having a huge airport; if so, that could mean several hops to get where you'd be going...)

Anyway, maybe that means you could do some early work deciding where you want the boat to be at start-up.... and maybe for the first 6 months or so after acquisition, while you get familiar with the basics of that boats operation and maintenance.

And then that can maybe guide you toward selecting a buyer's broker to help find and purchase a likely vessel.

-Chris
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Old 31-01-2017, 06:56   #5
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Re: Rotational liveaboard family of 3, feasable or dream?

There are literally millions of boats in Fl, during Hurricane season, and many are insured.
My insurance is in effect for a named storm, however the deductible is higher, but not so much that I see it as an issue. I didn't buy insurance to fix a $500 scrape of the gelcoat, I bought it to cover a total loss.
I assume if my boat was out of the Hurricane belt during season I would get a lower price, however as it lives in Fl, that would be tough to do. So you can insure a boat, the risk is higher and cost will of course track the risk
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