I’m sure you’ve heard the old saying that’s been around since humans built the first rickety old raft: a boat is a hole in the water that you dump money into! That hasn’t stopped millions of people over the years from purchasing and enjoying their very own boat. Luckily though, you have me to help give you some tips that should dramatically cut the cost of buying your own used boat and that’s exactly what I’m going to talk about in this article today.
The first question every would-be boat owner should ask themselves is whether or not you should purchase a used boat or a brand new boat. That’s a question that can only be answered by you based on your specific finances and financial obligations. Sometimes it’s better to buy a new boat, and sometimes it’s better to buy a used boat; it all just comes down to you.
For this article today I’m going to imagine that you are looking for a used boat and if so you’ve come to the right place.
The next question you have to ask yourself is this, when is the best time of year to purchase your used boat? Everything has a season and especially large ticket items have different buying seasons. When buying a used boat, the best time of year is in the fall.
Why is this? Well think about it, the summer is over, people aren’t boating anymore and the owner is looking at potentially another year until the season gets started again. That whole time they will have to store and care for that boat and they may not be able to financially, or they may need to sell the boat for some other reason.
All of this adds up to a lot of anxiety for somebody who’s looking to sell their boat during this time of year. This means that you can often get a steal if you are quick enough.
A used boat should cost at least 10% and sometimes even 20% less than a comparable new boat. You should never pay extra for any upgraded features that the last owner has installed like radar equipment or depth finders or something like this. The old owner will certainly try to charge you for these things but make it clear you’re not all that interested in them and knock off those prices.
You may want to consider a professional boat surveyor to help you evaluate how good of condition the boat is in and how seaworthy it is. The downside is that these people can cost up to $300. The upside is that they can save you from making a huge mistake on a boat that may be on its last leg.
Finally, check out a publication called the used boat price guide that is used by many dealers and lenders as well as insurance companies to help create comparative market values for different boats. This guide can help give you a good idea of what the boat should be selling for comparatively speaking.
So there you have several very simple tips, tricks, and tactics that anybody can use to help save a ton of money on a used boat. Happy sailing!