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Old 07-07-2014, 17:20   #16
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Re: Soon to Liveaboard, need Advice on Mail/Car

Before I retired I kept a slip at a marina, parked my cars in the marina lot and kept a post office box. This was easy enough in Florida. My wife and I live on a 41' ketch. My Brother-in-law lived on a 28' catamarran. My nephew is living on a 22' Catalina and my daughter and family live on a 36' trawler. Nobody is suffering and we all are saving money. I guess the only reason my nephew on the 22' is not suffering is because he is in his twenties!
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Old 07-07-2014, 17:25   #17
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Re: Soon to Liveaboard, need Advice on Mail/Car

Unless something has changed in Florida, I believe you need to have a "real" address and "proof" of that address to get a driver's license, register a car, enroll children in school, purchase insurance, or to open or maintain any kind bank or credit account.
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Old 07-07-2014, 17:33   #18
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I was trying to remember what the motor vehicle asked for proof of residence. if you have a bank statement sent to that address that's one and I think you need two. they have it listed on the Internet and I think I also needed my birth certificate along with my driver's license from another state for identity. I just remembered I had my boats registration as the second form of proof of address( it was mailed to and had the address that I was using)
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Old 07-07-2014, 17:36   #19
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Re: Soon to Liveaboard, need advice on mail/car

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Originally Posted by ArtM View Post
SNIP

If you are merely trying to save money, there are simpler ways to do it.


SNIP
Part of the negative responses you have been getting is based on having experience trying to duplicate the comfort level of a land based lifestyle on a boat.

It is much easier to live at a a certain level of comfort on land than on a boat. It is hard to store clothes on a boat with out them getting musty or worse, and forget about things like wrinkles. Doing laundry means putting clothes in a bag, then getting in a small boat or walking on a dock to a laundry, and if it is a laundry in a marina it is usually more expensive than one close to an apartment. A fridge on a boat is small and often not as cold as one on land, and forget a freezer unless you are willing to pay big time. These are just a couple of things that take not only more money but more time as well. Living without AC is also a big drag for some folks.

I live on a boat in a marina and love it, but it is not nearly as comfortable as living on land.
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Old 07-07-2014, 17:46   #20
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Re: Soon to Liveaboard, need Advice on Mail/Car

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I was trying to remember what the motor vehicle asked for proof of residence. if you have a bank statement sent to that address that's one and I think you need two. they have it listed on the Internet and I think I also needed my birth certificate along with my driver's license from another state for identity. I just remembered I had my boats registration as the second form of proof of address( it was mailed to and had the address that I was using)
The whole thing stinks and makes me angry. They require several forms of photo identification, and your cracked or expired licenses from another state won't do it.

You need PRINTED bank or utility statements MAILED to your "house", and you must answer moronic questions like "where do you live", which you are to interpret to mean "what is the street address of your residence", even though the law specifically does NOT refer to a resident address but only physical presence. You can also bring in a "letter" that was mailed to you at that address IF it came from a government agency.

The whole thing is the slow delegalification of transient status. It is illegal, probably unconstitutional, and it is uphold by every every court of every state in the union.
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Old 07-07-2014, 17:55   #21
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Florida is so bad you need two forms of ID to get a library card
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Old 07-07-2014, 19:07   #22
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Re: Soon to Liveaboard, need Advice on Mail/Car

If you're working that much, check Craigslist, or check with friends for a roommate set up. Save every nickel you can, and buy your boat. There are marinas in that area that allow liveaboards. Are you just want u no to live on a boat, or do you plan on cruising in the future. Also check a little further south. You may find what you need, just not as close as you'd like.

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Old 08-07-2014, 05:50   #23
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Re: Soon to Liveaboard, need Advice on Mail/Car

Homeless citizens in Florida and elsewhere can vote; their children can attend free public schools and the IRS will not deny them filing with the use of an indentified location. A location of residence can be established by these official means as an intersection of streets or a defined geographical location, but most would not take the time to go this route. Another easy method is to use a residence service such as St. Brendans Isle. Complaints about the bureaucracy come easy, but any intelligent person can get past this.
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Old 08-07-2014, 07:41   #24
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Re: Soon to Liveaboard, need Advice on Mail/Car

Can't you just use a UPS store mail box? you get a legal street address and Suite#. No one has to know it a UPS store mailbox
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Old 08-07-2014, 08:43   #25
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I live in Fl. on a boat mostly at a mooring or at anchor. I use a ups store for mail. The DMV requires a physical address if you do not live at your mailing address. Address on my drivers liesence is boat name and FL #s. Haven't had a problem in 20+ years. It is all doable.
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Old 08-07-2014, 11:25   #26
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Re: Soon to Liveaboard, need Advice on Mail/Car

There seems to be an overabundance of people that think living, sailing, cruising on anything less than a floating condominium worth multiple six figures is the equivalent of being homeless on the street.

Buying a house/condo is a better investment than a boat, period. Unfortunately, unless you live in Detroit, that piece of the rock is going to cost more than six figures and require something greater than what you can buy a comfortable boat for as a downpayment. Good idea to buy real-estate but it's not cheap or possible for many people. A boat is affordable for anyone with a decent job and modest down payment. Even though it does require continuing maintenance to keep its value, owning a boat is a way to accumulate equity that renting land based accomodations don't.

Living aboard a boat in the 30'-40' range is no big thing. No, you won't have thermostat controlled airconditioning, a kingsize bed, his and hers bath with jacuzzi and shower or a 25 cu' SS French Door refrigerator. The truth is you don't need those things. A boat that you can buy for less than $20,000 will have all the room you need to live aboard with a little creativity.

We lived aboard a 32' boat with a Labrador and a cat using an ice box, and a hose for a shower, at a Marina and were very happy doing it till raising a family required more space. You have to find a marina that will take you, however. Most marinas will have shower facilities, allow you to use the address as your mailing address, have parking for your car and some may even welcome you for the added security to the marina that your presence brings.

The big problem is storing a wardrobe that an office job possibly requires. My wife taught school and I was an aspiring boat ****** and didn't have any issues with clothes, possibly because my wife doesn't have a shoe fetish. Other live aboards got creative with their storage needs. Many had vans that they used for storage and an occasional second car. One even had a Grumman Panel truck that they'd set up as a workshop/wardrobe while they totally rehab'd their large wooden boat. As far as wrinkles, don't buy all cotton cloths. 100% Cotton sucks living on land and as well as a boat. Buy Dacron cotton blends or synthetics. That's all I wear and haven't seen the flat side of an Iron in decades while maintaining an office job. Living in an intemperate climate makes things more difficult as you need cloths for the different seasons but still doable.

Recently have spent a month at a time living on my smallish 35' boat in Alameda, CA and Kona. Once again, with an icebox and no on board shower. Not trying to maintain an office wardrobe but had plenty of storage for all the things needed on a daily basis. Rented a small storage space mainly for boat stuff for the renovation. Used the Marina bathrooms/showers. Really enjoy the time on the boat largely because of all the interesting people that I meet hanging out on the docks.

Don't think I'd want to anchor out and maintain shore based employment. Just too many inconveniences like not being able to leave or get to the boat because wind and waves make rowing a dinghy too wet or dangerous. Parking, dinghy landing etc. are others that add to the difficulty. Will definitely be more pleasant anchoring out with the boat swinging to the prevailing wind, however.

Have lived in an un airconditioned house on the beach in the Florida Panhandle through a summer. It was livable without airconditioning. Don't think I'd want to live in a Marina without some air conditioning, however. An awning and fans may make the boat more comfortable but high temps and humidity cry out for AC. Fortunately, if your boat is in a marina, a cheap wall unit AC would be plenty to keep a boat livable and there are boat specific carry on AC units.

So, don't let the naysayers talk you out of living on a boat. Go into it with your eyes open, however. Living on a boat has issues that you won't have in an apartment. Way way more comfortable than living in your car, however Given my druthers, would much rather live on a boat I owned than in a rented apartment.
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Old 08-07-2014, 12:45   #27
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Re: Soon to Liveaboard, need Advice on Mail/Car

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There seems to be an overabundance of people that think living, sailing, cruising on anything less than a floating condominium worth multiple six figures is the equivalent of being homeless on the street.
If you're talking about me, I'm not a naysayer and not opposed to anyone living on a boat, even a small boat.

I'm just responding to this person's statements that he wants to live on a boat "to save money" and that he doesn't know what to do about an address or a car.

To me, he sounds like he is thinking about going on the hook with a small boat (perhaps a 26') and rowing to shore for work every day, and that IS just a bit above being homeless on the street - the main difference being that you MIGHT have access to cold showers (if you can manage to get water routinely and have some source of electrical power), and you own the tub you are sleeping in.

Personally, I don't think of a 35' boat as smallish at all, especially if you are single, and would gladly live aboard such a boat if my current conditions allowed for it. In fact, I would gladly live on the hook with nothing more than a water bucket to wash in if my conditions allowed for it.

But this guy's conditions may not allow for it - he has a job - I didn't know what kind, and a family who may want to be with him at this boat, and is likely to be dating and meeting other people and he MIGHT like to have a decent place to take friends or to make a quick change of clothes without having to romp through a field of weeds to reach a leaky old rowboat or worse!

If I'm wrong, and all that suits his lifestyle needs, then I say go for it. $5000 will get you there. But history shows that other people on this very forum trying to live on the hook in a 26' trailer sailor did not stick with it long.
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Old 08-07-2014, 13:09   #28
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Re: Soon to Liveaboard, need Advice on Mail/Car

As someone living on the hook, I would recommend getting an older boat (1970's) in the 30-35' range. Most marina's will want a minimum size boat for liveaboard, That is somewhere between 30' to 35' and varies from marina to marina.

Starting out, stay at a marina, either as a sneakaboard or liveaboard. Your boat (any boat you buy) will need repairs/upgrades. That at first is better done at a dock and is easier to transition to anchor out later.

Living full time on a boat smaller then 30' will get small after awhile. It can be done, but its not easy as storage is never enough

Plus marina's normally let your car park free, some do charge, but I would not stay at those.

Mail is a PO box or a commercial main box. PO boxes take a physical address to open. I used a Commercial mail box to open the PO box account.

Drivers license, should not be a problem. Give them the marina address/ slip for physical address and explain your a live aboard boater. Most DMV folks know about that. I've not had a problem, even when I lived in Florida. My current drivers license lists my PO box #.
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Old 08-07-2014, 16:24   #29
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Re: Soon to Liveaboard, need Advice on Mail/Car

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.......... Most marina's will want a minimum size boat for liveaboard, That is somewhere between 30' to 35' and varies from marina to marina. ................
Sailorchic always provides great information. I have not heard of this size of boat restriction for live aboards in Florida marinas. I've known people on 22', 25', & 28' here in NE Florida marinas. This may be more common in California or other parts of Florida. I'm not promoting living on boats this small, but the design varies. I have a friend that has been comfortable on a Morgan OI 28 for twenty years, but that design is equivalent to a 32' length of many other boats. My nephew is living on a 22' Catalina, but he is in his twenties,- I don't see it lasting for many more years. By the way, my accounts of people living on boats this small are at marinas with facilities, not anchored out, though I know some succeed at this!
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Old 08-07-2014, 17:20   #30
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Re: Soon to Liveaboard, need Advice on Mail/Car

Regarding mail service we have been using st Brendan's isle fit the past 10 years. Very pleased with them and they helped me get residency in Florida. They offer a couple of mail plans but the one we use is where each piece of mail is scanned and we can access it via the web. Very helpful sine we have been cruising outside the US since 2005. SBI is located in Green Cove Springs.

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