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Old 12-10-2017, 21:56   #1
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Working up enough courage for next step

Ok, I have a severe sailing cruising itch that won't go away. I have been monitoring your forums daily new posts for a while now. Have read 10 books on research, buying, sailing, etc. My vocabulary has increased with sailor speak enormously. I have had smaller power boats in the past and on the ocean and so I know I like the sea. I even crewed for one week on a 44 footer on Mexican west coast (with no training or experience) I like going to Mexican coastal towns and walking among the marinas, as well as general sight seeing and activities on land. Now I think I am close to taking the plunge... I have been visiting the sites that sell sailboats in La Paz etc. and I might be planning a trip to take a personal look and then who knows?

Questions:
--is buying a sailboat (34-44 foot, 1982-2007, sloop, cutter, cruiser,) in Mexico a good idea??
--it seems that the boats down there are very well equipped with extra stuff I would want
--yes I would hire a surveyor
--what kind of documentation should the boat already have?
--would I owe Mexico some sales tax or other duty?
--I would probably sail around down there for a while then bring her back up to Washington state
--do I have to re-register with the CG?
--all the discussion on state registrations and taxes seems like a real mess
--I would guess the boat would be 6 months at home port and then 6 somewhere internationally

thanks for any help
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Old 12-10-2017, 22:25   #2
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Re: Working up enough courage for next step

Hi, literally thousands of boats have changed hands in Mexico without any difficulty. There is a paperwork shuffle that has to be done properly, however.

Talk to one of the brokers down there, and they'll be able to sort you out. I would recommend not trying to do it on your own, as there are some potential pitfalls of buying down there, but if you go through one of the reputable brokers, you should have a good experience.

No taxes due unless you import the boat. You can USCG register. It's really not much different than buying in the US. Again, use a broker (just my advice after living down there for many years). Many folks seem to think that brokers are all crooks, and while I won't argue the point one way or the other, I think that buying in MX really calls for one.

There are some good deals to be had, but you do need to beware. Probably the most common tale for the boats that are being sold down there is that they were equipped in the US or Canada for a world cruise that never happened, for whatever reason. Not all, of course, but many of them.

The downside? A lot of sellers frankly have kept their boats down there too long in that climate without a heck of a lot of maintenance before finally deciding to sell. Some of the equipment lists, while impressive, do include a lot of outdated gear.

Of course, there are no absolutes, and there are some real gems to be had at a discount to the market price further north.

Enjoy, we think that the west coast of MX is a fantastic place to cruise.
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Old 12-10-2017, 23:15   #3
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Re: Working up enough courage for next step

Sometimes it's best to jump in with both feet and just know you have an exit plan (i.e., sell the boat) if you should get to a step you can't (or don't want to) navigate. As someone who embarked on a similar path, if I would have had to figure it all out from the beginning, I would have never bought the boat. It has been almost 5 years now and I've never thought once about selling her. I'd sell my soul now, if I had to to keep the boat, but I would never sell her. You can do that as long as you keep in mind there is always an exit....
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Old 12-10-2017, 23:20   #4
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Re: Working up enough courage for next step

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Originally Posted by gamayun View Post
Sometimes it's best to jump in with both feet and just know you have an exit plan (i.e., sell the boat) if you should get to a step you can't (or don't want to) navigate. As someone who embarked on a similar path, if I would have had to figure it all out from the beginning, I would have never bought the boat. It has been almost 5 years now and I've never thought once about selling her. I'd sell my soul now, if I had to to keep the boat, but I would never sell her. You can do that as long as you keep in mind there is always an exit....
Wiser words have never been spoken. Despite all the hassles-these boats of ours really are things we become deeply attached to. We're planning to sell our boat in probably 5 or 6 years, and I've already got some trepidation about it. Maybe I'll just keep her forever...
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Old 13-10-2017, 02:27   #5
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Re: Working up enough courage for next step

Quote:
Originally Posted by TJ D View Post
Wiser words have never been spoken. Despite all the hassles-these boats of ours really are things we become deeply attached to. We're planning to sell our boat in probably 5 or 6 years, and I've already got some trepidation about it. Maybe I'll just keep her forever...
forever is a very long time! But I getcha point, and we feel the same way about Insatiable II. When you have a one-off, unique yacht, and it ticks your boxes well, the chances of bettering it are slim. It took us a long time and lots of miles to fine tune our wants and needs. Then it took another long time to find a boat that satisfied those criteria.

Sell her??? Hell no!

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Old 13-10-2017, 02:29   #6
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Re: Working up enough courage for next step

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, seapop.
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Old 13-10-2017, 09:42   #7
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Re: Working up enough courage for next step

Thanks for all the nice replies. That's another major attraction for me... the camaraderie and community of cruisers.. instant friends and allies.
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Old Yesterday, 15:54   #8
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Re: Working up enough courage for next step

TJD said it perfectly. The rules for both US and Mexico are straightforward but complicated and important to follow. A broker can walk you through it. Walking the docks in Mexico is a great learning experience the west coast of Mexico is spectacular and you are off to a great start n
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