Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Swarthmore, PA
Thanked 88 Times in 78 Posts
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Re: "You make your money buying the boat, not selling it."
Not sure I understand the original quote. And while driving a hard bargain in buying a boat is not a bad thing, many boat sellers want their boats to go to nice people and will get offended by an overly arrogant attitude. Some will make the deal anyway, but some others might not - especially if deep down they don't really want to sell (wife is making them, not ready to admit that their health is declining, etc.).
I am convinced that I could have gotten my boat for $2000 less than I paid. But the owner had just lowered the price by $4000 (I was monitoring the boat and called he second I saw the price reduction) and was holding firm on the price. I thought the boat would sit on the market for a few months longer at his listing price, but it was the beginning of the season and I would be losing out on prime sailing season. (I had also looked at other specimens of the same model which were not in as good a condition as this one.) So I paid the extra money so I could start sailing.
It's very important not to let your ego get the best of you. You'll always save money by walking away. Keep walking away and you'll save lots of money, because you'll never buy a boat. Sooner or later you find a boat that you love enough that you'll be willing to pay a little more to get the deal done and start sailing (or start refitting, if it's a project boat).
You can haggle for a couple weeks over $200 in price difference, but that's two weeks of not being able to sail. Once you start dealing in boat bucks, you'll realize that two weeks of sailing is worth a lot more than $200.
I also think that anyone who thinks he'll sell a project boat for twice what he paid for it may be deluding himself. It happens, but not often.
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1998 Catalina 250WK Take Five (at Anchorage Marina, Essington, on the Delaware River)
1994 Mason 44 Firefly on loan from my BFF (West River, Galesville, MD)
1991 15' Trophy (Lake Wallenpaupack)
1985 14' Phantom (Lake Wallenpaupack)