I think you are correct that the Ericksons and Cals are comparable boats. As I understand it the Ericksons were relatively pricey boats and well built and the Cals were value priced boats and you got a lot for your dollar.
Something we had pointed out to us by a broker (who would have been more than happy to sell a boat to us) is that is we liked the Cal flush deck we should go for it. Because of it's untraditional styling its resale value has stayed artifically below the market and what other similar boats are going for in its class.
Basically he said if you like "that" boat, buy it; you will get more for your money that with any other similar model out there.
And our shopping showed us that it was true.
other boats in similar or worse condition were selling for almost twice what we paid (2500.00)
admittedly we were looking for a project boat and had a small budget, but we were prepared to spend quite a bit more than we did and were happy to find such a good value being passed over by other buyers for boats with more traditional lines.
ain't what ya do, it's the way that ya do it...