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Old 15-09-2020, 12:42   #1
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Cost Review of Year 4 Cruising and Living on the Boat

Just finished 4 years of cruising and living on the boat and am reviewing the costs and major events. The year was to me very expensive at $57,613 and $8802 more than last year that I also thought expensive. The year was interrupted by a broken shoulder that needed recovering time, and of course “The Virus”. To us it seemed we hardly moved at all and we spent most of it in waiting mode. But we did travel from Gulfport MS to the Florida Keys, then to the Bahamas, then back to Florida to Jacksonville. So where did the money go and how might it help planners and wannabes in deciding their plans?
Our “General” living category was $13,156 and has been pretty consistent over the four years. It was $1,242 more this year and a lot of that is due to my wife spending 4 months at my daughter’s house recovering and she was buying food there at same time I was on the boat. This category includes food and related items, sundries, clothes, haircuts. Basically, it is the things we would have spent just “living” and if an item does not fit in some other category it goes into this one. This category was 22.8% of the year’s total costs.

Boat maintenance, repair and upgrades was a big category this year again at $19,856 and 34.5% of total money spent. But it is probably worth breaking the maintenance/repairs and the upgrades apart some. In the maintenance and repair part of boat costs we got a new mainsail for $5800,had a engine flange develop a crack that turned into a remove and take to a machine shop to get the bolts out project that was about $500 total, replaced head hoses using the expensive hose that was about $300, a new solar controller $300, and did lots of those small everyday maintenance items that really add up if people were to keep track of them. In the upgrade spending we got a new electrical start outboard $2300, a new electric flush head $1000, a used Spectra watermaker that by the time it was all installed was around $3300, new refrigeration unit to split out our freezer spillover system that cost around $650 all total. Then there were things like a new BBQ grill, a sewing machine and material to make dinghy chaps and sunshades ($500), nav chips for the chart plotter, new charts, new handheld vhf, a big canvas tarp for a boom tent etc. etc. that sometimes are hard to decide if they are maintenance or upgrades. But overall can say that maintenance/repair were about $11,800 (half of that just the mainsail) of the boat costs and about $8,000 were upgrades that didn’t really need to be done but we wanted them.

Fuel costs are not worth talking about in the big picture. But spend $746 this year, which was $545 less than year because so much time was spend just sitting around.

Dining and drinking out dropped a lot due to the quarantine and we spend a total of $4500 (7.8% of total), which was $2384 less than last year. We aren’t happy about it really!!!

Entertainment was also way down as we didn’t vacation due to the quarantine. This isn’t the way I would like to save money. We spent $1,306 this year on entertainment, down $2,924 from last year.

Communication costs were $2,548 for the year, up $1,220. The added costs this year were 2 new cell phones for about $300, a Garmin inReach for $289 and its related costs for tracking and communication, and for an Island Wifi unit and costs for while in Bahamas. I will admit that family/friends feel better knowing where we are and we feel better knowing they know, and that we can get weather, texts, and send SOS etc. when out of cell range with the inReach unit.

Marina costs this year were $4,322, which is $120 more than last year and was 7.5% of total costs. I bet we spent 10 months this year in marinas or on a mooring, but except for time in the marinas in the Bahamas managed to always stay in a low-cost marina.

Medical and dental were up a lot and was $2,387. Our health care premium costs went up about $600 for the calendar year. But the big cost increase was a broken shoulder from falling off the boat next to the dock. While the major costs of that were covered by health care the copays for physical therapy etc. and the transportation related costs add up. So medical and dental was up $2,206 this year.

Transportation was a big category this year and was $5,924. This was due to a few extra weekly car rentals, but the big cost was buying a used car while in Jacksonville. We think this will be a savings once the car is sold (that number will roll into next year’s numbers) or be so close as to have made the convenience well worth it to us. But, for the year the cost was up $3,700 and that is almost exactly the total cost of buying, registering, and insuring the car.

There are a couple of other categories not worth a lot of discussion but are listed below.

So, there you have it. That is how WE spent $57,613 cruising and living on a boat this year. We definitely are not living a high life, but we are living a good comfortable one. It is just an example for others to use as they wish to budget/plan and it doesn’t matter if others could do it for less, because even we could. I don’t make any attempt really to separate “cruising costs” from “living costs”, because my bank account doesn’t know the difference and all the money was spent during the year while we lived and travelled on the boat.

Spreadsheet attached with monthly spending, year comparisons, big cost items tracking. Yearly category totals are below.

General Living - Food, soda, alcohol, clothing, sundries, other - $ 13,1556.46
Boat costs - upgrades, repairs, maintenance - $ 19,856.72
Fuel (diesel, gas, propane) - $ 746.46
Dining and drinking out - $ 4500.80
Entertainment - $ 1306.81
Communication, storage, shipping - $ 2,545.32
Fees - $ (365.89)
Marina - $ 4,322.27
Electric - $ 189.80
Medical - $ 2,387.34
Transportation and travel - $ 5,923.63
Gifts - $ 1,426.85
Water - $ 80.00
Registration - $ 217.50
Insurance - $ 1,307.00
Attached Files
File Type: xls Money spent cruising.xls (70.5 KB, 64 views)
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Old 15-09-2020, 13:58   #2
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Re: Cost Review of Year 4 Cruising and Living on the Boat

Thanks for the update. Helps me to think how I want to spend my own money. Always interesting. Thanks again. Roy
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Old 15-09-2020, 14:14   #3
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Re: Cost Review of Year 4 Cruising and Living on the Boat

I find the posts interesting and useful for planning/dreaming.

Why not move to a quarterly post rather than monthly?
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Old 15-09-2020, 14:36   #4
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Re: Cost Review of Year 4 Cruising and Living on the Boat

Thanks for that. I'm in year 6 of my catamaran ownership and I've done maybe 50k all in for build cost and maintenance to date. Probably more like 40-45k

So I guess whatever I sell for in NZ will put me far ahead of average budget types!
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Old 15-09-2020, 14:45   #5
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Re: Cost Review of Year 4 Cruising and Living on the Boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post

So, there you have it. That is how WE spent $57,613 cruising and living on a boat this year. We definitely are not living a high life, but we are living a good comfortable one.
For those down under that's $78,900 aud.

Thanks for putting up the numbers.
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Old 16-09-2020, 05:13   #6
It is only boating
 
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Re: Cost Review of Year 4 Cruising and Living on the Boat

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Originally Posted by ChrisJHC View Post
I find the posts interesting and useful for planning/dreaming.

Why not move to a quarterly post rather than monthly?
Most of the time it takes to the reports is just going through my credit card statement and writing down the charges. Even if I never post another monthly report here I still have to go through the statement if I want the info for myself.
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Old 16-09-2020, 05:59   #7
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Re: Cost Review of Year 4 Cruising and Living on the Boat

Congratulations on hitting the four year mark! Let's hope this next year involves more traveling and less sitting for all of us.
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Old 16-09-2020, 08:34   #8
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Re: Cost Review of Year 4 Cruising and Living on the Boat

Thank you for taking the time to breakdown and post. It’s hard enough to continually track let alone also to post the info for others to review. I started using Mint a couple years ago which took some time to set all up but now very helpful tracking costs.
Much appreciated!
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Old 16-09-2020, 17:14   #9
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Re: Cost Review of Year 4 Cruising and Living on the Boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
Most of the time it takes to the reports is just going through my credit card statement and writing down the charges. Even if I never post another monthly report here I still have to go through the statement if I want the info for myself.

I’d assumed you were tracking these anyway for your own purposes.
I agree that it’s a lot of work if you’re not doing so!
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Old 16-09-2020, 18:41   #10
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Re: Cost Review of Year 4 Cruising and Living on the Boat

Someone wisely stated " you will spend what you have ", i have found it to be true, i live on $ 1000 A month , that's what i have i even save a little, in some areas i save alot.
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Old 16-09-2020, 19:09   #11
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Re: Cost Review of Year 4 Cruising and Living on the Boat

Thats great, thanks.
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Old 16-09-2020, 19:54   #12
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Re: Cost Review of Year 4 Cruising and Living on the Boat

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Originally Posted by Simi 60 View Post
For those down under that's $78,900 aud.

....
And there went my coffee!
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Old 16-09-2020, 19:55   #13
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Re: Cost Review of Year 4 Cruising and Living on the Boat

Interesting. We pulled up to a dock 4 times in 7 years of cruising in central and South America other than haul out.
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Old 16-09-2020, 19:56   #14
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Re: Cost Review of Year 4 Cruising and Living on the Boat

Thank you for the numbers SB. Although I suspect the correlation of costs between our countries will be low, the categories are good as a checklist and, if nothing else, make me feel much better about all the money I have spent so far doing up the boat while TRYING to get cruising.
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Old Yesterday, 06:21   #15
It is only boating
 
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Re: Cost Review of Year 4 Cruising and Living on the Boat

That OP is just a credit card cruisier spending his trust fund. Is what he does even really "cruising". I bet I can do it for $20,000/yr less than him this year living just as well. I will post progress and even breakdown the numbers to prove it and not just use words!
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