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Old 20-06-2019, 05:41   #16
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Re: I want to be a liveaboard

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Originally Posted by barbienana View Post
I have been looking at Trawlers? Our boat budget is around $10-$15k
We desire to do the Great Loop and eventually cruise over to the Bahamas as well. I'm looking at 50 and hubby is under 45...lol
We have around $2k a month disposable income coming in to play with each month....and all the time life has to offer.

See also Trawlerforum.com (sister site).

I think you're going-in boat budget is too unrealistic. Check Sailerboy's (and other's) various threads here about monthly liveaboard costs to compare against your monthly disposable.

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Old 20-06-2019, 09:02   #17
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Re: I want to be a liveaboard

I bought my 32 Freedom for $18,000 two yrs ago. It didn't need anything except a new water heater ($300) and a new Yanmar heat exchanger ($800) I live on $1,550 a month.
$400 is automatic (boat ins, car ins, phone, etc) $500 rent if at slip, $600 for food or repairs I'm 76. Of course you can do it. Don't listen to those who say you can't. They have enough money that they don't really need a budget or have a total fear of living so close to the line. Have $5,000 for backup money if anything goes wrong with engine, sails. Be sure the boat you buy doesn't need fixing up and has a good engine. So it's a trawler... you can still do it. Use the remaining $500 for fuel. And as stated you need to up the initial price, but never pay asking price unless it's a gem.
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Old 20-06-2019, 09:19   #18
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Re: I want to be a liveaboard

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Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
Ahh, you've opened a Pandora's Box with this: ...as we are not mechanical...


One of my favorite phrases on the electrical section of this forum is: "None of was born an electrician."


Others have written (and many have been PUBLISHED - like in books!!!) how boat ownership and desiring to have a wonderful way to travel, "requires" learning to be an electrician, mechanic and plumber."

This is the answer!!! Stu always has great input and this is sage advice. Although you may not be mechanically inclined now, if you are willing to learn, there is much you can do yourself. Although it is very important to know your limitations, if you are careful, start with the little things, and seek help when necessary, there is little you won't be able to do given time and patience. Many of us on this forum had to start with little skills.


A friend of mine bought a boat and not only was he not mechanical, he didn't even know how to sail, motor, or leave the dock! It's only been two years and now he is doing minor mechanical and electrical work himself. When he has work done, he watches, asks questions, and learns.


There are some excellent books out there that are a great source of information, and can help to take some of the mystery away. Two that quickly come to mind are Nigel Calder's Boat Owner's Manual (The bible) and Don Casey's boat repair books. There are others.



If you are not leaving for a year or two, join a yacht club and help others as much as possible. You will learn a lot.



You can do this on your budget with proper planning, a willingness to learn and do your own work, and a can-do attitude. I wish you the best of luck.
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Old 20-06-2019, 09:46   #19
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Re: I want to be a liveaboard

10-15K$ to buy a trawler is dodgy. Almost any trawler big enough to live on at that price would need a lot of work. An engine replacement will exceed the purchase price. Buyer beware.
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Old 20-06-2019, 10:12   #20
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Re: I want to be a liveaboard

OFC you can

Get out there and go for it , this nonsense you need so many years to do this and that , rubbish, no real DIY skills , bought my first boat 42 ft , never sailed that big before I was a dinghy instructor, replumbed her 2 eletric toilets , full instruments , full re wire , 110 litre holding tank with all plumbing work ,saftey lines. re rigged her from previous owners who were so called experinced. My Wife never sailed before but got Balls of Steel learned with me on our own and got it in three Days , (Docking in small spaces , mooring , Anchor, all sails up on a ketch no issues and that was in 35 knots )
New fans, leds , stripped all varnish off inside , re varnished, took off all treadmaster , kiwiw gripped, took hull from a brownish looking gelcoat and now I can see my face init , how dId I learn , I read books and the internet and on these forums , and amalgmated all that info until you finally see the way to go forward , and with a bit of tenacity and bloody mindfulness you can do anything , as for Budget , those that post on here and maybe its A US thing but expenses for eating out , drink etc , are high in my books I lead a simple life and good food I belive is what you can cook yourself , least you know what your eating

Im 48 and suffer from M.E/Fibro. and I did all this SO CAN YOU
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Old 20-06-2019, 10:18   #21
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Re: I want to be a liveaboard

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Originally Posted by barbienana View Post
So what do you all think?
I think we have no idea of your technical skill level.
Take a look at Marine Survey 101 it will help show you how to inspect these boats you are going to see.
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Old 20-06-2019, 10:28   #22
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Re: I want to be a liveaboard

Reading the posts, I stopped and realized that I have been living aboard full time for 10 years and part time for 3 years prior. I am lucky to have the required skills to do everything to keep my boat in excellent shape. I have done many upgrades over the years and also do some work for other boaters. If you have skills that you can sell and the ability to maintain your boat you might be able to squeeze by on 2k a month. I am single and I do, however your purchase price is a bit short unless you are able to get an extremely good deal. That being said I have seen it done. I am 75 and presently cruising the central coast of British Columbia with a friend.
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Old 20-06-2019, 10:36   #23
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Re: I want to be a liveaboard

I have no idea of the OP' technical skill level.

May I suggest you read Marine Survey 101 before you go to view these boats. It will show you how to inspect them.

Marine Survey 101, pre-survey inspection

Sorry, the normal link function is not working for me.
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Old 20-06-2019, 10:38   #24
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Re: I want to be a liveaboard

Its too bad you don't want a sailboat. Old sailboats are inexpensive to buy and use almost no fuel (compared to powerboat/trawler), so would totally be within your means.

For example, you can buy a Pearson 30 (mid 70's vintage) usually around $1000. I had one and loved it, went all over. Was plenty big enough for me to live on.
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Old 20-06-2019, 10:48   #25
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Re: I want to be a liveaboard

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I think you don’t have the budget and funds. Sorry this isn’t what I’m sure you want to hear.
hi i do it on a lot less than that,just dont do marinas when sailing and have two boats one in england and one i sail .thats in the canaries untill november.ive never averaged more than £120 a week yearly for both boats.
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Old 20-06-2019, 14:56   #26
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Re: I want to be a liveaboard

You rock Lepke!
Sorry to say I have no patience for “yachties”. It’s why I love this forum.
Get ready to never be bored. There’s always something to do, clean, fix, etc. it’s an awesome lifestyle. I did it for a short period a few years ago until I met the missus. We now have a smaller boat which if we lived on it would definitely end in one of us killing the other.
We’re doing it again (on a larger boat in a year or so) and are looking forward to it. She’s ready, and I’ve been ready!
A decent cruiser can be found but be ready to spend in order to do what you described. As a former semi-pro cyclist, the phrase is you gotta put in the miles. The loop is no joke nor is cruising to The Bahamas with weather, tides and knowing how to find where you want to be.
It’s a great lifestyle which can be done without being a “yachtie” with a ton of disposable income.
Wish you the best and keep us posted on the boat you settle on
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Old 20-06-2019, 16:10   #27
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Re: I want to be a liveaboard

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hi i do it on a lot less than that,just dont do marinas when sailing and have two boats one in england and one i sail .thats in the canaries untill november.ive never averaged more than £120 a week yearly for both boats.


I think the reference was related to the initial purchase price rather than the ongoing maintenance costs. 10-15 k to purchase and 2 k / month for maintenance and fuel. That sounds a bit skinny particularly considering fuel costs. At least if you want to go far.
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Old 20-06-2019, 16:43   #28
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Re: I want to be a liveaboard

Hi, You sure have a tight budget, however I bought a 38ft trawler( in fair to good condition)for the loop, plus a side trip to the Bahamas, nearly 7000 nautical miles, used only $4600 of fuel over 15 months, so fuel is not a problem. Your biggest costs will be maintenance, which you will need a crystal ball to estimate, but good luck, follow your dream.
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Old 20-06-2019, 18:54   #29
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Re: I want to be a liveaboard

Fuel costs and purchase costs on a trawler might well blow that budget. Don't be discouraged by naysayers - but I would look at sailboats 30 - 35 feet. The used market it pretty good right now, and the wind is free. You'll still likely be motoring a fair bit, but the engines are small, and more economical. Thousands of 2 person couples have lived well on a 35 foot sailboat, but the privacy and storage take a little adjusting - as in all boats. Good luck, and good planning is the ticket. Modest expectations are what wins.
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Old 21-06-2019, 04:13   #30
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Re: I want to be a liveaboard

I think many of you "may" never have been poor enough to understand the root of the question posed by the OP. Now let me first say I have no way of knowing that on an individual basis, but I do know this. For over ten years now I have been friends with a very resourceful man, with a boat, who is homeless other than his boat, his tent, a serious tackle box and the required things that help him eat. Small shovels, rakes, buckets, cast nets, a small gill net all help as well. he does not work but does sell (with a license) his catch of crabs, oysters, and clams. He has worked on boats his whole life, grew up on a shrimp boat, and simply understands how to survive. He has ZERO income coming in per month, but you will see him frequently at the Tiki Bar, smoking Marlboro's and sipping on 7-10 dollar drinks quite often.

My point is he knows how to do it on nothing, little of nothing, and spends in a month what many of us might spend in a day or two. SO, try this.......a 26 foot Pearson with a small outboard, can be had locally near the Cape Fear River in North Carolina (there are two that I know of) for $2000.00, that need little to nothing in the eyes of a poor man. Eating from the bounty below that which you are floating on, cost very little. Even bait can be caught for free daily. My friend, LJ, frequently feeds me although I share with him what I can. He accepts very little. My point is clear, he has lived on the water, for more than ten years, keeps his boat running and licensed, and I doubt he has spent $2000.00 a year in any year, ever. No he does not cruise far, but the OP could still cruise moderate ranges every month on a budget of $2000.00 with a little kitty on the side for emergencies. Do not let anyone steal your dream! It can be done, like anything can be done, by people who are determined to do something. Ever sit beside someone in a Marina and watch them spend thousands of dollars a week? I have. Sitting right beside me and LJ, who is spending a couple of hundred a month. Me, I'm back on land right now as my wife battles Cancer, but we will be back on the water when we can. Yes, my own situation is a bit better than the OP's like many of you here. But I was poor once in my life, poor enough to shoot squirrels every day to feed the dog. So lets talk Perspectives, Reality, Dreams, and how to do it on near nothing......the rest of us can keep doing it the way we want. Trust me it can be done on very little, if you have the will to do it.
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