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Old 29-10-2017, 18:57   #1
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Live aboard marina. What is it like?

Hey everyone,
So I値l be leaving for the navy soon and I知 trying to save as much money as I can.

Right now my current plan is to buy a 25-40 boat that has the bare necessities for me. A bed, a closet, a toilet, and a small area to prep and store food.

By doing this, in the long run I知 hoping it値l be cheaper than getting an apartment or house. With the left over money I値l be saving/investing it until the day comes I can pull the trigger and buy my big boat and sail around the globe, or the bay. Baby steps.

But my question is, how much does it cost to do this and what is it like? I致e seen various numbers thrown around but I want to hear for real experience.

Thank you!
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Old 29-10-2017, 19:28   #2
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Re: Live aboard marina. What is it like?

The navy has probably changed a lot since I was a part of it, but I don't see bring a sailboat with you feasible. The navy should supply what you want from your boat. But not in the style you're thinking.
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Old 29-10-2017, 19:51   #3
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Re: Live aboard marina. What is it like?

I did what you envision when I was in the Navy back in the early '70s. Bought a Columbia 26 and a VW Camper Van when I was stationed in Hawaii. Between the two of them, had a mobile place to live as I couldn't find a legal live aboard slip.

By the time I was transfered to Norfolk had paid off the loan on the boat and owned it free and clear. Put it on the market and used the proceeds as a downpayment on a Morgan 35. The squadron was considered 'Sea Duty' because we were constantly on det. and lived on the boat when not deployed. Squadron trained the fleet in Soviet Aircraft Operations and we were gone over 250 days a year but in 2-3 week deployments with a couple of weeks back in Norfolk in between. We got TAD pay and a housing allowance which I plowed back into the boat and paid it off by the time I got out of the Navy 3 years later. Sold that boat and bought a Westsail 32 Kit in Costa Mesa, CA which we built, the Navy had issued me a wife by then, and sailed to SoPac.

So it can be done but buy the boat(s) right as you'll probably have to sell it when you get transfered.
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Old 30-10-2017, 05:13   #4
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Re: Live aboard marina. What is it like?

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Originally Posted by NavyTurtle View Post
Right now my current plan is to buy a 25-40 boat that has the bare necessities for me. A bed, a closet, a toilet, and a small area to prep and store food.

By doing this, in the long run I知 hoping it値l be cheaper than getting an apartment or house. With the left over money I値l be saving/investing it until the day comes I can pull the trigger and buy my big boat and sail around the globe, or the bay. Baby steps.

Not a bad idea, but...

Easier (smaller baby step) to just live in quarters for a while. Probably more space, certainly less work. (Building manager will take care of electrics, plumbing, HVAC, etc. for you.) Probably easier/faster to build that nest egg...

I'd suggest you get to your first duty station first, scope out the possibilities, before deciding further.

Thanks for your (upcoming) service!

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Old 30-10-2017, 05:23   #5
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Re: Live aboard marina. What is it like?

Ditto what Ranger42c said. Believe it or not, there are naval duty stations that are a long way from any sort of marina that you could use. You say you want to take baby steps, but buying a boat right now -- before you even know where you'll be stationed -- is a HUGE step!
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Old 30-10-2017, 05:29   #6
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Re: Live aboard marina. What is it like?

25-40 is a big range in boat size for living on. Whether it saves any money depends on where you live to compare the costs. I've been just sitting at a marina the past 3 months and it has cost $3-3.5k total to live.
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Old 30-10-2017, 07:56   #7
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Re: Live aboard marina. What is it like?

regarding marinas for navy personnel--they exist. there is a hierarchy in application and tenancy... usn active service first, then inactive on down to last and least army inactive/discharged/retired.
you may wish to investigate these lower priced marinas for your purchase and tenancy.
in san diego , the name of marina is fiddlers cove. is on the strand, bay side
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Old 30-10-2017, 08:33   #8
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Re: Live aboard marina. What is it like?

Do not plan on living on a boat or apartment. Duty stations can change at a moments notice.. I found that living aboard the Navy ships and when on land based assignments stay in the free barracks. Save your pay, you will not really need almost anything while in the Navy. The Navy was a great experience for me. I recommend it.
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Old 30-10-2017, 08:41   #9
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Re: Live aboard marina. What is it like?

I think the advice to hold off on the boat idea is prudent.

As for costs for live aboards, it's all over the map depending on where you are geographically, the relative quality/amenities of the marina, etc. It can range from $100/month to $800+/month. And the selection can be limited as only a minority of marinas allow live aboards.
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Old 30-10-2017, 09:05   #10
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Re: Live aboard marina. What is it like?

As others have said, buying before you know where you are going is not a good idea. Once you are there you can decide if it is feasible. If it is, likely there will be others already doing it and some of those will be deployed elsewhere or will be leaving the navy and will be needing to sell, often in a hurry. Just realize that you will likely be in the same position further down the road so making a profit might be hard.

Only do this if you want to sail the boat. Boats in a marina, or elsewhere, and saving money don't often go together.
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Old 30-10-2017, 10:27   #11
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Re: Live aboard marina. What is it like?

Thanks everyone,

I guess my phrasing was a bit off. My plan was to get the boat after I’m out of my A school and get to a duty station. This has opened my eyes a bit. I’m not completely thrown off this path but I will also be keeping open to other possibilities.
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Old 30-10-2017, 10:31   #12
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Re: Live aboard marina. What is it like?

Quote:
Originally Posted by NavyTurtle View Post
Thanks everyone,

I guess my phrasing was a bit off. My plan was to get the boat after I’m out of my A school and get to a duty station. This has opened my eyes a bit. I’m not completely thrown off this path but I will also be keeping open to other possibilities.
I know several navy guys that have done this. (tried living aboard to save money) The ones that usually last the longest have been in for a while and know the routine

I know a couple guys, one a navy seal the other a diver, that usually try and sell their boats whenever they deploy with little success.

They are both off their boats now and living in apartments. The seal just got back after an almost year deployment and the diver is about to leave

Where is your A school and what is your rate going to be?
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Old 30-10-2017, 10:48   #13
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Re: Live aboard marina. What is it like?

Quote:
Originally Posted by NavyTurtle View Post
Hey everyone,
So I値l be leaving for the navy soon and I知 trying to save as much money as I can.

Right now my current plan is to buy a 25-40 boat that has the bare necessities for me. A bed, a closet, a toilet, and a small area to prep and store food.

By doing this, in the long run I知 hoping it値l be cheaper than getting an apartment or house. With the left over money I値l be saving/investing it until the day comes I can pull the trigger and buy my big boat and sail around the globe, or the bay. Baby steps.

But my question is, how much does it cost to do this and what is it like? I致e seen various numbers thrown around but I want to hear for real experience.

Thank you!
Buying a boat and leaving for the navy? I have it they going to station you around your boat. I think you need to rethink that plan.
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Old 30-10-2017, 11:33   #14
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Re: Live aboard marina. What is it like?

Hell who takes care of the boat when you are deployed? I was deployed 300 days/year when on the boat and the other 65 days probably all but 20 were still on the boat doing something (duty/maintenance). BAQ would never pay for a boat and dockage!
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Old 30-10-2017, 12:02   #15
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Re: Live aboard marina. What is it like?

We have a couple of Navy officers in our marina. I see them heading to work when I leave at 0500. Location is key and we are in the closest liveaboard marina 30-35 miles from typical Washington, DC.

Our liveaboard marina is Herrington Harbor North in Tracy's Landing, MD and it is quite nice. But, there is an active boatyard and it gets dusty when its not raining. Water and self-service pumpout get turned off in November and back on end of April. We are only six slips out, but it seems like a longer walk to the marina head and parking lot when it's raining sideways. It's not perfect, but it's 25% the cost of our last house and 50% the cost of our last apartment. We are headed south the middle of November.

It probably makes sense for you to wait and see, but nurture the dream.

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