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Old 01-18-2010
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Karen

We had just settled on our boat the week before the bottom fell out of the financial markets. Within a few weeks I had lost my job, technology jobs are very hard to come by, and at my age, nigh impossible.

We immediately put the house, the lot, and the boat up for sale. Not a single offer on anything in over a year, even though we dropped prices through the floor.

We lived on the boat, as it is much cheaper utilities, most of last year and finally rented the house a month ago.

I tell my employed friends to save, cut back and save some more....all on deaf ears. You can not put the brakes on fast enough to shed the debt you will need to shed, we are still struggling. No savings, nothing left.

We are hoping to keep the boat at all costs, as we can easily live aboard and have done so.

To your point...many questions remain, and I am not sure that I could encourage your buying a boat until you answer these questions honestly and you can get your husband to do so as well.

It is not a fairy tale, and is flat hard at times.

You and your family will be living in extremely close quarters, with minimal privacy - my wife and I call it virtual privacy...

Boat systems are notoriously finicky and fail at the worst time...you will need to be very handy, learn to do without or PAY someone else to fix things.

It will still cost money to slip, live and repair the boat. In my part of the Bay, slips run about $3K a year - payable quarterly. Then you will at least pay metered electricity and a liveaboard fee..about $50 and $150 respectively, monthly.

You will still need to deal with water on board, pump outs of sewage/holding tank and other things that are just there and work silently on land.

I would not worry about being sea sick, it happens to us all at one time or another. On my Beneteau, my wife got green every time she sat below at the dock. Never when we were moving...on the Hunter we have now..not been sick.

Is it worth it? For us an unqualified yes. YOu get to see, feel and hear things others only read about. Whether it is the stars at night or a heron walking the dock 2' in front of you. It always changes. The people are and have been wonderful. The challenges are many, but the rewards immense.

For us, the simple life is great, and when we get the kid through two more years of college, I think we will even make it.

What will it take...
sell the house at what you can, and never look back or revisit the decision again...many can not do this and the blame eats them up for ever.
no eating out, we have had two meals out since last Thanksgiving (both while visiting the families over the holidays) learn to cook now, and plan to while on the boat. You will need to learn to live with a very small refridge/freezer no matter what boat you decide on.

This is too long now, so think about this and what the others will post. It is a lifestyle change ...and one that is well worth it.


Settling for the boat you NEED, not the one you want.
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