TSteele 65: Funny you should mention Hartge's. Just 3 days ago I asked a very experienced sailor and senior mechanic, at another yard off of the West River, if he knew a broker he would trust. He said Dick Zimmerman at Hartges knew more about boats than anyone he had ever met, would trust him and that Dick sold his boat recently to a guy in Florida. That new boat was pictured somewhere here on Sailnet in the last few weeks. I recognized it from a local yard.
I think many of us are testing out our dreams here on Sailnet before trying them out in the real world, as we should, and we are so very lucky to have Sailnet and pals.
I would only call a broker if I had my finances in order and knew exactly how much I could afford. That is 5% for Maryland sales tax, 20% to make improvements on any used boat (according to Sailnet postings) and that leaves 75% for the boat itself.
Try to talk to people on the Chesapeake with children who live aboard to see if itís really for you and yours. I always said to my wife that ďsailing and boat lust causes more divorces than about anythingĒ, Iíve been told that and would never sacrifice family health or happiness for a boat. YIKES! I can think of 2 sensational divorces just recently that involved sailboats, nasty divorce settlements and kids.
My wife hated sailing while our son was growing up and as frustrated as I was, I kept sailing my 14 then 17 then 22 foot boats-all dinghies to me-and raised our son shore side. Itís an understatement to say that my wife wasnít a live-aboard type. Now that our son is in college and happy my wife loves to charter in the Caribbean and canít wait to get a big boat and go cruising. Go figure.