What's a young man to do?????
So, here I am, a 27 year old male trying to make his way in the world. I have many fond memories on Prairie Creek Reservoir with my father and grandfather on their Gale Force 20 (The Nauti-Lust), and want to get back to sailing. My wife also shares the hunger, driven by a couple of quick ventures onto the small lake.
So, I enroll us both in sailing school, Edison Sailing Club in Fort Myers, FL. Good club, we enjoy it a lot! It has only reinforced my love of being on the water. My wife of course loves it, especially when the first 3 lessons are in 20-30 kt. winds!! Learned that a Santana 20 will round up when things get hairy.
But what next? In the short term, we are planning to join the club, annual membership is pretty reasonable. However, that's not quite the same as having your own baby in the slip. At some point, I'd really like to have my own boat, in a slip so it's ready to go when I am! Since we're living in SWFL now, the area is very conducive to this.
However, prices are not!!! From what I've seen, a decent used boat can be had for not too much green (looking in the 18 to 23 foot range), don't need or want something brand new, not really interested in dinghies, either. But slip prices are INSANE!! $10-$12 a foot just seems a little ridiculous to me for a piece of water to keep your boat in.
$200 a month to keep a boat in the water just won't fit in our budget, and won't for quite a while at this economy's rate. And from what I've found, there aren't any viable dry-slip options around either, so at least I could leave the mast/rigging up and just launch/retrieve as necessary. Plenty of dockaminiums for the well-to-do powerboat crowd, though.
How do you all make this work? My wife is getting her masters in accounting, once that is complete, the household income should go up. After a false start in music education (didn't like the job, or working 70 hours whilst getting paid for 35 1/2), I now have a good job performing OSP engineering for phone companies (small contractor firm), if we can get business up and stable, I think my income will raise as well.
Even then, though, owning a boat will be an expensive proposition. Any advice to a young man on making this idea a reality? Thanks in advance!