Also keep in mind that with any 35+ yr old boat
your biggest expense will rarely be just the selling price
but more often the refit
and replacing aging systems, etc., especially if you want/need to do any trips out of sight of land. Unless of course you are very handy yourself and/or have a ready access to marine
pro buddy/mentor type of situation. I was lucky in that regard and my marine
pro friends saved me a ton of $$ once I got the boat. Also while looking for a boat establish a relationship with either a decent DIY
boatyard in your area where you can find marine mechanics, f/g repairers, etc or take a course or two on diesels, systems, etc. - will be money
well spent. And this forum is a treasure trove of information on everything boat related.
So basically if your total budget
is only $25K try to keep the selling price
at no more than $12K or lower. In today's market if the asking price is $18K it's OK to offer around $10K and most likely you'll get it for $12K or less. And there is no reason to pay more than $5K for an early 1980s or older 30footer unless it is in show room condition. Then it may be worth another $3-5K. Sad but it is the reality of today's boat market.