Re: Im buying a big boat! But i have never sailed
Another voice to say, if you have made up your mind, then there is nothing left but the fun.
Did I read correctly that you are married? How does your wife feel about this family project?
If you structure the deal in your favor so you put down very little but carry all the expenses until it is launched and you got to sail it you really haven't risked too much and the seller is in a better situation because he now has the boat in the water where it will be much easier to sell to someone else if boating turns out not to be for you.
You might want to hold off on leather seats and tv's and such until the boat is in the water and you have had a chance to find out what makes sense in real life. As others have said if you don't find at least one thing that is not cosmetic that costs thousands of dollars that really should be repaired you will be the first person in all of history.
You have mentor that knows the boat that is a big plus for you. On the other hand the PO probably can't sell this boat to anyone else so if you make the deal so he gets his money after the boat has passed survey is in the water and he has made you a sailor neither of you are taking much of a risk.