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Old 28-06-2008, 14:13   #1
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Cost of ownership

I want to buy a used mono for live aboard in the caribbeans for 2 years.

With a budget of $100k for a 38' mono: considering total cost of ownership for 2 years, is it better to purchase an older (1990) ''Island Packet 35''or a more recent (1998) ''Beneteau 381''???

Cost of ownership = depreciation & maintenance.

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Old 28-06-2008, 14:36   #2
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With a budget of $100k for a 38' mono: considering total cost of ownership for 2 years, is it better to purchase an older (1990) ''Island Packet 35''or a more recent (1998) ''Benetta 381''???
I think the general idea may be right but if you plan on living aboard a boat for a long time there are other factors to consider. When you set a budget of the purchase price you make a lot of presumptions that can in the end be manipulated so you think what ever you really want. We all do it.

You do need to consider maintenance but depreciation is not so easy to compute. Depreciation is what you do to figure a market price. After you own the boat there is no depreciation only maintenance. It's just one boat and it's yours so figuring it's value relative to others is of little use to you. If you need to figure out how to resell it before you buy it then you really need to know it's not a game that you can win.

If you try to estimate what you will need to spend up front after you buy the boat you have some fighting chance but not a really good one. Because you like a boat you see things a little bit optimistic. That thing is not really that bad is it? Then there is after the first year. A lot of boats make the first year fine then go south fast. Not sure why but it's clear you can't have a crystal ball. Your vision is limited to a shorter window than you will need.

Personally, I think your budget is a bit short, but it comes down to what backs it up. You can say how much the purchase price might be limited but you don't really get to say what the back end is going to be. It will be what it really is. There is no rule of thumb that actually works. It's a lot of money. Don't buy a boat you don't really like.
Paul Blais
s/v Bright Eyes Gozzard 36
37 15.7 N 76 28.9 W
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Old 28-06-2008, 15:18   #3
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There is a rule of thumb, not particularly accurate, that it costs 20% of purchase price to own a boat per year. That includes maintenance, moorings, insurance and the like.

That does not take into account depreciation or capital amortisation or the like, which is hard to generalise about, as one boat will depreciate, while another might not. For example, boat "x" may have cost $100,000 in 1980, but will still sell for the same price $100,000 today. Theoretically, no depreciation therefore. However, in real terms, the vessel has depreciated, as inflation has eaten into the $100,000 figure.

If you have some old boat magazines, it's interesting to look at the prices of the same boats a few years ago. That will give you at least an idea of how to work out your depreciation (if any).

Some boats actually appreciate in value, look at some of the classics for example, but again, in the real world, the cost of maintaining them would totally offset that appreciation.

One thing you can be sure of, however, is that boats are not as bad as cars. And how often do people bother to calculate their depreciation on cars? Truth is, its rare, as far as I am aware, for people to worry about their depreciation on boats.
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Old 28-06-2008, 15:20   #4
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I understands that there are a multitude of parameters to juggle with...The plan for now is a buy and resale after 2 years. I am now 46 and want to take a brake, I cannot retire for now and cannot own a big sailboat while working. The boat is only the vehicle and shelter in this journey. The adventure is the soul of it.

There are thousands of used Beneteau for sale and only hundreds of Packets, so there is bigger offer but what about the demand??

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Old 28-06-2008, 15:23   #5
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There are so many variables when considering a boat to live on, it comes down to personal likes and dislikes, just like living in a house. I personally think accommodation is more important than sailing abilityówithin reason of course. You will be stopped most of the time anyway, so having as much space as your budget allows is important. Depreciation, i.e. resale value? So much depends on its upkeep, and most live-aboard people keep their floating house as neat as they can. I lived with my family for seven years in the Mediterranean, then sold my boat for exactly what I paid for heróbecause she was in better condition than when I bought her.
Itís all down to individual taste, thatís why there are as many boat types as there are houses. I always recommend new live-aboard-wanabys to charter a boat about the size they are considering. If you find you are cramped after a week, well, better get a bigger bank loan!
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Old 28-06-2008, 17:08   #6
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Good rule of thumb, if you expect to spend $100k, double it. If you expect to spend $50k, you will be in good shape if you have $100k.
7.25 years until the Carib
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Old 28-06-2008, 17:55   #7
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Hmm, nice one Moonlight! It costs about 20% of the purchase price to own your boat per year. I just did my sums quickly, and hey presto! This was spot on! I wonder if anyone dares depress themselves by trying the same thing (hehehehe). Oh and correct too, that some boats will depreciate, while others do not, and indeed some may actually appreciate with time. I recently started looking around for the first time since I purchased mine 15 months ago, and was very surprised to find that despite my expectations of a slack economy driving values down, they have remained fairly constant. Big plus for those of us at the lower end of the market.

Ok, enough of this, I`m off to find myself a part - time job! :-P

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Old 28-06-2008, 19:22   #8
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You could buy one like this eBay Motors: 1977 Island Trador 37' Ketch Sailboat (item 360065631014 end time Jul-02-08 17:00:00 PDT) and give it away when you get back ..... the cost of the boat might be less than the insurance on a $100,000 boat
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Old 28-06-2008, 23:07   #9
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Too bad a guy can't get his hands on a survery on that boat. It sure would be tempting if I could and it wasn't in too bad a shape.
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