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Old 10-07-2016, 09:10   #1
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Saving for retirement, advice for first boat!

Hello!

1st post and hopefully in the right place.

So I'm 36 and decided to go the route of buying a boat to live on and eventually sail around a few places. It will be a few years until I can afford to buy one outright or earlier if I finance it. I currently have quite a bit spare a month I'm putting by for it. Not much but a start! When I was younger I looked at doing it but relationships and jobs got in the way, now I'm free I'm going for it again. I scuba dive a lot and have been on quite a few boats but have not sailed myself.

I would like people to give any relevant advice or tips etc on my plan !

I shall be looking to do some RYA courses to obviously make sure I get on ok with sailing and can handle it etc !
During this educational time I shall be saving and lookin into various catamarans. I have taken a liking for the Lagoon series due to the space and layout so any advice on these would be great. Also I like the idea of stability of a catamaran.
Depending on financial timescale I shall purchase a boat and refurbish or upgrade etc to make good for living aboard. I'm not sure pros and cons of buying something to do up or somethin in perfect condition.

I am at square one on this so any advice would be great! I'm based in Kent England so plenty of marinas too!

Thanks
Alastair
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Old 10-07-2016, 09:57   #2
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Re: Saving for retirement, advice for first boat!

Only a very broad statement - This forum is full of threads about people who have taken on rehabing neglected boats, only to discover that the project was more work and the costs too high to make it all worthwhile. It can seriously interfere with actually sailing. Save up the money or buy a smaller boat instead. I recommend that you start with a boat that is ready to sail - You'll still have plenty of work on your hands.

On a personal note my father grew up in Kent and I love the area. Say hello to my cousin Christopher who restores antique race cars near Battle, and his daughter Sarah who is a BBC TV weather presenter. --Tim Keith-Lucas
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Old 10-07-2016, 10:03   #3
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Re: Saving for retirement, advice for first boat!

Thanks, I've already read about avoiding ex-charter boats etc. I think even if I have ten years to restore it might be a mistake. Potentially looking for something with little work needed. That and my lack of boating experience! I live slightly north near the River Medway. I think my first post was broad too! I'm just trying to soak up as much knowledge as possible. I've not even started on the earning a living on board too.... That's going to be me becoming a divemaster hopefully!
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Old 10-07-2016, 10:40   #4
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Re: Saving for retirement, advice for first boat!

Alastair, Welcome to the community. We have many here who have taken well to living aboard from a start with little experience.

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Originally Posted by AliArcher View Post
...................
................... I've not even started on the earning a living on board too.... That's going to be me becoming a divemaster hopefully!
Moving aboard a newly purchased boat and beginning a new employment position are both major events. I would hesitate to do both at the same time. Many who are working and preparing a boat for cruising are keeping the same secure jobs that they have ashore.

If you purchase a less than perfect boat for a better price I would suggest that you limit the imperfections to those things that you can solve yourself without great expense. It will be important to have a sound hull, keel attachment, modest engine, rigging and sails. Many are able to deal with improving the interior, dealing with portlight leaks, some basic plumbing and wiring. It will be important to choose your battles to match your skills.

In addition, consider a smaller boat within your range. 28' to 30' can be ample space for a single sailor.
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Old 10-07-2016, 10:43   #5
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Re: Saving for retirement, advice for first boat!

Don't worry about anything right now except saving, taking lessons, and sailing on as many different boats as you can. The things you think you like and know at this point will change, maybe by a little and maybe by a lot. Be open to those changes and seek out opportunities to get practical experience that challenges your preconceived ideas.
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Old 10-07-2016, 12:07   #6
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Re: Saving for retirement, advice for first boat!

Thanks, it's ok I'm in secure employment right now but potentially looking at ways to earn a little money whilst travelling ie if I'm anchored at one place a while I have potential to earn a little bit.
I was worried that the smaller lagoon 380 I think would be too small but maybe I'm being too greedy. I like the look of lagoons as it is pretty much a normal flat/apartment sized accommodation.
Also very true on the suggestion of taking course and sailing as many different models/makes too. What might be ideal in my mind might not work out the same in real life!

Thanks and keep the advice coming !
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Old 11-07-2016, 08:30   #7
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Re: Saving for retirement, advice for first boat!

Quote:
Originally Posted by vjm View Post
Don't worry about anything right now except saving, taking lessons, and sailing on as many different boats as you can. The things you think you like and know at this point will change, maybe by a little and maybe by a lot. Be open to those changes and seek out opportunities to get practical experience that challenges your preconceived ideas.
My short two cents also.
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Old 11-07-2016, 09:09   #8
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Re: Saving for retirement, advice for first boat!

A Lagoon 380 by most all accounts is a rather large boat, for one person its ridiculously large. (in my opinion)
I have a 38' Mono and for a couple I think it's more boat than we need, but we had the kids living at home at the time and the wife was thinking about having room for them, and I didn't want to argue myself out of a boat either, but still think that 32' we looked at would have been a better fit for us.
Don't get caught up in that "we have to have at least a 50' Cat to be comfortable" thing I hear here lately, it is actually not all that hard to get too much boat, one that you can't handle single handed and one you may not be able to afford to sail
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Old 11-07-2016, 09:13   #9
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Re: Saving for retirement, advice for first boat!

Oh and at least down here Divemasters are a dime a dozen, think Dive Bum.
Makes just a little less than you can waiting tables, Seriously.
I don't mean to offend, but many have thought what a neat way to make a living.
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Old 11-07-2016, 09:39   #10
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Re: Saving for retirement, advice for first boat!

Quote:
Originally Posted by AliArcher View Post

1st post and hopefully in the right place.
Couple of threads a week get started with your same question. It of course can be done and I started with the same basic goal and am a couple months away from sailing off, so it of course can be done.

Save your self a lot of time and use the search feature and read the older threads. Other than that my only advise is to work on getting enough sailing in before wasting a lot of time with a plan(lots of planners find out they don't really like sailing and being on a boat a long time).
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Old 11-07-2016, 18:23   #11
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Re: Saving for retirement, advice for first boat!

Cats are stable until they're not. Here in the Pacific, every few years a freighter finds one upside down.
They're probably fine for a careful sailor that keeps up with the weather.
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Old 11-07-2016, 18:48   #12
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Re: Saving for retirement, advice for first boat!

two types of yachties filth Rich with no time but ample money
filthy poor with ample time but financially challenged //you may enjoy living on a wreck utilizing spare time to titlavate your dream into reality or start small learn the ropes ten trade up /don't give up live your dream
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Old 20-07-2016, 08:31   #13
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Re: Saving for retirement, advice for first boat!

Hi Alastair,

I was in the same boat you were and we're approximately the same age :-). We own a Lagoon 380 and have sailed it for 8000 miles. When we started searching none were in our price range. And by watching closely and signing up for email alerts we were able to purchase ours.

You will find that all boats go through a bit of refurbishment and upgrades. Even brand new ones from the factory. In fact the brand new L52 next to us in the marina went through 2 months of upgrades and touchups. So you have to ask yourself if you like fixing boats or sailing them? I've met a few guys that actually prefer the former with no intention of sailing. And if you like sailing then getting a fixer-upper can really rob you of motivation and time.
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Old 20-07-2016, 09:25   #14
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Re: Saving for retirement, advice for first boat!

Hi,

I think my track was similar to yours and now that I am 15 years down the road I think some of my life junk could be recycled by others.

Here are some of my free floating ideas:

1) You started late. I started at 4. Now this tells you where you are and so my first advice is to learn SAILING very well and start NOW. If I were to do it again, I would do this part the same way again: plenty & plenty of sailing on small and tippy dinghies up first, windsurfing, kitesurfing (if you care), paragliding (oooppps) - to get the feeling of what makes the boat move, sail, glide, stop, turn turtle, and how to get out of it all, should you end up in the soup. SAIL, SAIL, SAIL then SAIL more. All kinds of boats. Row, paddle, swim, snorkel and mess about generally. You can learn plenty in 5 years or so, living in England.

2) SAVE. I got my chance at 25 and at 35 we were free to go. If you are lucky, in 10 years you will have a small boat and a small (or big) budget and you can see where your head is then on all this. If you are still in the same mindset, you will be free to go and roam and think about what and how you want to do next. Do not lock your savings into anything that can lose heaps of value nor into anything that is not liquid enough. Do not lock your money into anything that is not yours (mortgages). Do not buy a boat. Do not get married and have children. SAVE. And have fun meanwhile. A trek in the backcountry is as much fun as a holiday in Pattaya, at a 20th of the cost. Skip eating out, learn to cook at home. See how the hermit lifestyle of a person with a dream collides with what the society expects from you. See that you are the society and whatever lessons this teaches you. But most of all, have fun. Building up the budget and skills takes time and it is an adventure in itself. Maybe better than all that sailing and cruising stuff.

3) 10-5 = 5 (give or take) so point three says you will have then 5 years to hone the plan, learn some navigation, some boat skills (it is nice to have some skills that will help you fix the boats that you will have). Also, at this point you can review your vision and check your business plan: if in 5 years from now you can't sail and you have way less than half of the budget, it will be time to review the project, adjust the goals and means, or look for another rabbit.

So, go for it, have fun, and see what happens.

"There is absolutely nothing half so much worth doing as simply messing about..."

;-)
Cheers,
b.
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Old 22-07-2016, 02:57   #15
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Re: Saving for retirement, advice for first boat!

Thanks for all the advice!
Luckily I have some skills behind me, competent diver so maybe bits and bobs like that and originally trained as a chef (so if anyone needs catering done on a sailing trip!) and lastly been running a hotel and restaurant for a few years. Had a major change and now gone into facilities management for a gym/spa which has been handy in teaching me more of the mechanical/electrical side of things. I won't be looking to make a living when I'm sailing about its more about making a bit of money here and there. I don't think for a second I'll be able to sail/travel and earn enough.

I shall search the forums once I get back home and have a look at previous threads about similar situations.

It's been great advice so far and shall be taking it all on board or aboard !
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