Why is 30 the benchmark length and not say 35? I have all of about 1 hours sailing experience, once on a hobie cat @ the beach, and twice in a rental trimaran in a lake where I managed to tack a few times. I just learned what a Jib was yesterday. I guess I am asking the question to learn something for myself.
I have also learned that a 30' @15k will could more than likely wind up costing you another 10K or more in the near future if. The budget factor could take the pleasure right out of pleasure cruising if you like any typical family live on a tight budget.
With an infant on board single-handed is the key word. Knowing first hand how 100% attention is never enough for a child, you or the misses may find yourselves, single handling the boat more often than not.
The beauty of it is that there are two of you.
The beauty of raising a child with two parents is that you can split the duties somewhat, but with a boat can be a baby on its own, trying to keep that lamb from screaming can be a full time job, between the boat and the baby I foresee stress in the near future. How is your relationship, is it capable of withstanding the brunt of this new lifestyle? A 30' foot boat will seem like a 1o' boat when you consider 2 screaming babies and a nagging wife needing a break, while your trying to do your homework, I hear your education could be a full time Job. Dude I suggest getting bigger boat.
Babies, school, boat, 3 full time jobs, now where does getting a job to pay for all 4 of your living expenses come into play, if she works then now you 2 will have 4 full time jobs, and that means you will more than likely inherit a babysitting expense as well as the lions share of taking care of the baby, considering that a baby sitter could almost negate nearly half of the money being made? Say your girl gets a gig making $12 hour after taxes etc etc etc you may have $325, afte a babysitter you may have 125, and after dinner out you may have enough to fill up your gas tank.
May I ask why your selling the house? Because this is not even including the many many other worst case scenarios, like your girl bailing on you and the kid because she just can't take it no more, or you having to drop out of school... A young couple and a baby, living aboard the confines of a 30 foot boat?
"I could be bounded in a nutshell, and count myself a king of infinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams." Shakespeare
I suggest you 3 spend a month living aboard a 27 foot boat, before even attempting this maneuver. Stress can make the boat smaller and smaller, might as well get a taste of what living aboard even a 35' boat will feel like in about 4 months of moving onto it with a baby.
If you were my son I would more than likely be talking you out of it, marriages are hard enough to manage without forcing yourself into a crunch. Where you are going to find that all too important time to nurture your marriage, in the midst of everything else you are going to be obligated too, then there is that all too important solo down time you both will need, besides sleeping of course.
I am sure you have heard the expression there is not enough time in the day, well add all the elements involved with this new lifestyle there is not only less time, but less space. I suggest you find a boat with an aft cabin where either you or the wife can have a place of refuge because you will need it, especially to focus on your homework, as I imagine you will have a ton of it.
Contrary to what Budda say's our passion's truly can be a virtue, if they are counter balanced with reason. Balance is the key here, how are you going to balance all the time each object in your life is looking to possess, while incorporating the brutal yet surreal elements of nature to the equation? Marriage, school, baby, and a boat, sounds like a novel. Where does the money factor in this equation? It just does not add up to me, but I am looking forward to hearing to your reply.
As crazy as a notion your predicament may appear to me, I am sure mine may come off as being even crazier to you. With all of 1 hours experience sailing, and less than a months research on the matter, I have already sold my house, picked out my boat, and looking forward to sailing her down from NY this spring.
Dreams do come true, but like that old saying goes, be careful what you wish for.