My wife and I managed to do the whole thing in record time it seems. We were about 6 months from concept to living aboard. After we figured that we wanted to do it, it became a mania. Getting rid of the stuff was the easy part. At her suggestion we hired an estate sale company who came into the house and sold all of our stuff! It was amazing! After the sale they took what was left over to charity. We didn't have to do anything.
Finding the boat was a slight issue but we were looking at a costal cruiser and they are everywhere here in Seattle. We found a good one and then had to line up moorage. (We couldn't get the boat till we had somewhere to put it!)
After looking all over the seattle area we started calling all of the marinas and putting ourselves on Liveaboard lists. It looked like there was going to be a long time to wait as the lists in some cases were running 6 years to get a slip.
It turned out though that there was a guy we met while walking around the neighborhood we now live in. He was on land and working on a garden on the shore line. He asked what we were doing and we told him we were looking for moorage we could live in. He literally said "Why don't you just take my slip in the next door marina? I have a few extra slips..." WHO SAYS THAT? Who has EXTRA SLIPS? It turned out he was legit. He lived aboard right there in a lovely houseboat, and he indeed had other slips. Several. But only one big enough for our 36.
Well in the end we bought the boat and guess what? It didn't fit into the slip! We ended up having to go to another marina and plead with the owners to let us stay. They were our saviors and we have helped out at the marina any way we could ever since.
There are several things to note about this story:
Get rid of your stuff with the help of an estate company. It's easy and clean and you'll probably get more for your stuff than you thought you would.
Finding a good boat is'n as hard for a first timer as you might think.
Getting a slip is a pain in the butt, but can come from the most unlikely of places.
Being a member of a community can not only save you in a time of need, it can make living on your boat more enjoyable and fulfilling than you could imagine.
I love living on my boat. My wife and I have decided that it is a permanent lifestyle for us. Our next boat will be capable of going anywhere we could ever think to go. We can now think of a whole lot of places...