When I bought my boat here in Marina del Rey I tried to be above board and would tell the dock masters that I was looking for a live aboard slip. Not one location would accept me. In frustration I decided to just get a slip and deal with issues as they arose. The next time I applied for a slip I was told, “no live aboard’s” to which I promptly smiled and responded with “no problem”. I signed my one year lease and moved the boat into the slip.
For months I kept a low profile, used dark curtains to mask interior lights and got to know some of the other sneak aboards that were around. As time went on I slipped into a more normal routine. The dock master noticed me around more often but never said a word about my being there and in time we even became friends. I’ve been living aboard for 5 years now, have the greatest neighbors, and even co-host the annual 4th of July party complete with a band. I think if you keep your boat maintained, the dock clear and you are a friendly, upstanding kind of person there is no issue.
On the subject of upgrading the marinas I have to say that the developers are certainly making life hard for those who own boats. One redevelopment in the marina removed 500 slips several years ago and are just now rebuilding. As you can imagine this caused a shortage of slips and the remaining operators started jacking up the prices and being very selective. When the project is done there will be fewer slips, the smallest of which is 35 feet. The developers want large, new boats so that the box people can look out their windows or sit on their balconies and have a view.
It’s a shame that the developers have forgotten what the marinas were built for. Smaller boats and older boats are being pushed out, small businesses are folding because the county charges them 3% to 5% of their gross revenues, and new apartments and condos are quadrupling density with an equal increase in traffic. Won’t be long before us pesky boaters are in the way. Sorry about the rant.
Best of luck
Humm, if all goes well I’ll be heading out some time this year to start cruising and my 45 foot slip will be empty… do I hear any offers? J