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Old 31-03-2009, 19:30   #1
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Abandon Ship - news story

NY Times story on abandoned boats.

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Old 31-03-2009, 23:02   #2
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Interesting article...Most abandoned boats probably should have been years ago. Many not sea worthy enough to leave a harbor causing a back log in slip availability and hence increasing slip least in most of California. In the article it talked about legislation to help the owners dispose of them...what a concept! Prior, the State looked the other way. Maybe there will be a silver lining to the economic cloud of dispair...
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Old 01-04-2009, 03:26   #3
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Obviously the market for recreational boats has gone very soft as credit and disposable cash evaporate. This weakens the market and will drive all prices down as it did in the real estate market. I don't see why a similar loss of value will not work its way through the entire boating world. The signs are there.

Like the real estate bubble, with credit and disposable income around boats became desirable "toys" and that meant there needed to be places to moor and dock them, and all the support/business for the marine suppliers.

As you can see the downsizing of the marine industry with Boaters World going belly up and WM closing branches and then who knows what's next?

The sub prime may have started with the lower tier of home owners, but it also hit "speculators" in the real estate game who over leveraged and took a haircut when credit dried up, and they couldn't move their properties except perhaps at a loss. This then drove the next tier of real estate prices down. And of course some top tier properties hit the market as the wealthy also saw their wealth evaporate and they pull back on their excesses. Villas, McMansions and huge expensive homes are up for sale at greatly reduced prices. People in NYC are walking away from six fugure deposits on apartments.

I think the same is happening in the recreational boating world. Some people who need cash are finding that any "equity" that they had in their boats is not there. If they had a ship's mortgage they may be upside down, ie the boat will fetish less than they owe on their mortgage, which is increasing difficult to pay for and a low priority.

I suppose this may induce partnerships and abandoned ships and will definitely mean a overall depression in the entire marine sector. As in any downturn in the market, those with cash can scoop up assets which are undervalued at great prices.
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Old 01-04-2009, 03:47   #4
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So many times when people have these “easy to achieve thru credit… Dreams”, when they hit a financial hurdle the dreams often turn easily into despair and they absolve themselves of basic responsibilities.

I have trouble getting emotionally invested in working up any sympathy for them because they never understood the code of self reliance and pride that is a sailors mantra and we are better off without them.

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Old 01-04-2009, 12:19   #5
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Suppose you came across an abandoned boat and decided you liked it... what is stopping you from simply claiming it as your own? would that be legal or would it be considered piracy? Also, could you go to the police and offer to buy an abandoned boat from them instead of letting them scrap it?
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Old 01-04-2009, 12:34   #6
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Interesting... I haven't seen evidence of outright abandonment yet, but I certainly have noticed that on any given day, there are AT LEAST a half dozen people trying to give away their boats on craigslist ('give away' might be for some token $$ like $100).

I've also noted what seems like a larger number of boats parked in my neighbors' yards under shrinkwrap.
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Old 01-04-2009, 14:35   #7
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That article looked like a beat up imho.

Who is going to abandon a $30k boat? The guy was a fraudster trying to rip off an insurance company.
Now a Journo says its happening everywhere...

Sure some very old boats need to be recycled, and that must be expensive. I hear in the USA theres a boat crusher that comes around and compacts fiberglass boats and then dumps them in landfill. That must be expensive!

Its a worry for some of the 'project' boats people buy... $10k for an old 50ft steel or Ferocement boat they think they can do up. 5 years later they realise its 50 foot of junk and how to get rid of it?

I don't know if scrap steel yards would want it unless the steel was good, as for fero... the cost to cut it up and trash it... Yikes!

Has anyone ever done that?

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Old 05-04-2009, 04:50   #8
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Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
I don't know if scrap steel yards would want it unless the steel was good, as for fero... the cost to cut it up and trash it... Yikes!

Has anyone ever done that?

We had quite a lot of old Ferro barges hanging around from the end of the War in The Medway Estuary and elsewhere in the S.E. UK. They eventually sank them as sea-defences to re-build the sea walls. I've never heard of any other Ferro boat being scrapped.

Steel is re-cyclable, but GRP will be the problem, just what can you do with it? Land-fill is becoming illegal over here. We have targets to reduce land-fill in the double percentage points each year. Maybe GRP could be burned in power stations and used as a fuel? The problem is gonna be cost-effectively transporting GRP to a disposal site. The World is having big problems already with plastics disposal. Our local Council has already lost a million pounds because with the recession, no one wants to buy it's re-cycled waste anymore.
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Old 09-04-2009, 07:55   #9
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I met a guy in CA who had bought a 28ft motor boat with twin Chev 350's from a marina for $400. The slip fees hadn't been paid and so the marina had a lien on it after 3 months, and they practically gave it away. I think the bottom is currently dropping out of the market, but it will be interesting to see which categories suffer the most.
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Old 09-04-2009, 08:25   #10
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See the following concerning boats sold at Auction for defaults on slip rents and abandonments: City of Long Beach, CA - Boat Auction . Most of these boats reported went for a few hundred dollars. Those that did not were dragged over the sand, loaded on flatbeds and hauled to the county dump. The current pace of abandonments is reportedly 4x greater than was the case in 2008.

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