Originally Posted by wolfenzee
With a house, people don't really own them, they just pay the bank for the privilege of being able to say they own piece of dirt when they don't. I own my boat 100% and nothing I owe (or ever will owe) will but that in jeopardy. Similarly there is a distinct line between making a boat a home....when you make it yours, put who you are into it. Getting other people to recognize that you actually own it is not as hard as getting people to recognize and accept that you actually live on and will continue to live on it.
As to the future of the sailing industry it is at mercy of the marketing industry, new boats are out of most peoples reach, at one time the industry figured the "average" sailor was a husband, wife and kids who did coastal cruisng on weekends and stayed in marinas, because the housewife controlled the purse strings the interior was designed accordingly, resulting in comfy, easiliy handled though slow boats. Another trick the marketing industry likes to push is put design features from racing boats on cruising boats (if it is on a racing boat it will make my boat go faster right...unless of course it was actually there to fool the handicapping rules) which ended up with boats that took more work than should be found on a cruising boat. The boat industry (just like the car industry) would rather sell a small number of excessively expensive boats, than try and build boats more people can afford....new boats are for people with more money than sense, you can get a much better boat for alot less used.
Sorry Wolf but I think you are wrong on this. If people buy the types of boats you mention where the wife holds the purse strings so what, that is what people want it has nothing to do with going cruising, they want a boat just like they got. Ya some may talk big about dreaming about going world cruising but that is all all most all of them will ever do, dream. But if they really want to go they give the wife or the husband the ultimatum if that don't work they part ways. You meet cruisers everywhere who really wanted to cruise no matter what it cost and parted the relationship or better yet told the kids they will have to pay for their university education themselves. That is what it really takes for most of us who really want cruise. Great sacrifice yes but that is why as it has always been so few cruising.
As for you can get a better deal buying a used boat over a new boat that is only a N. American idea. Yes if your on a very limited budget yes that can be true, But many middle class folks in Europe, NZ and Aussy are buying good cheep bluewater boats new. They must give up a lot to do so but they are ready to do so. It is sad that N. Americans do not have good information on good boats being built in Europe and other parts of the world. Any brand new bluewater boat from 250K to 500 K US is cheaper than a great bluewater boat cost 25 years ago and by far. New boats are for people with more money than sense is a truelly strange way to put it. A lot of people around the world are educated in modern design and want a new design that will do exactly what they are looking for. PCP has done such a good job on " interesting boat designs" thread to try and educate those who have the dream of cruising what is out there. The new bluewater boat building in Europe is very healthy. As for 20 something cruising a lot of them are on new boats that cost under 200K some of these twenty somethings worked as Auto body mechanics or street cleaners but they saved, sacrificed and are sailing for real.