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post #1 of 18 Old 04-25-2007 Thread Starter
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Liveaboard Toronto

Hello all,

Due to a recent job promotion/relocation, I'm semi-seriously considering buying a boat to live aboard year round in Toronto. Aside from the basic amenities, the boat would double as a cruiser for day trips around Lake Ontario. I currently own a C&C 24 on lake st. clair to which I've participated in club regattas and day trips. My needs aren't much, I've temporarily rented a 400 sq. foot apartment in TO which suits me fine.

I've come across a boat that spiked my interest. What do you think? Am I crazy trying to stick out the winters in Toronto? Do you know of any marinas/other boats that are currently doing the same?

YachtWorld.com Boats and Yachts for Sale

Thanks for your insight,

Ryan
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post #2 of 18 Old 04-25-2007
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Ryan...there is a mail group called the liveaboard list and the moderator of that list lives on board in Toronto. So yes...it is possible. Obviously has drawbacks...but it can be done. Here's a link to subscribing to the list:
Mailing List Archives
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post #3 of 18 Old 04-25-2007
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A 45' boat is a bit large for a day sailer and are you prepared for the costs of ownership that a boat that large will incur. A 45' boat is almost eight times the size of a 24' boat, since boats grow in size in all three dimensions. The haulout, dockage, and maintenance costs will be significantly higher than those you experienced on your C&C 24.

If the boat is properly equipped, and you're properly prepared to deal with it... then wintering in even Toronto shouldn't be a problem. There was a family, a couple and their toddler son, who have lived aboard up that way on an Alberg 30.

I would highly recommend you look at something a bit smaller, unless you've got the money to burn. The boat will be less expensive, but the maintenance costs will also be far less expensive. Also, the boat will work better as a daysailer IMHO.

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post #4 of 18 Old 04-26-2007
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Take a look at:
Port Credit Harbour Marina
1 Port St. E. - Port Credit
Tel: (905) 274-1595
Fax: (905) 274-1029
There’s lots of year ‘round live-aboards there.
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post #5 of 18 Old 04-26-2007
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I live aboard in Newfoundland Canada, I'm from Ontario and have seen the liveaboard community, in Toronto, there were about 15 sail boats, never talked to any, but seen they were well set up

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post #6 of 18 Old 04-26-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigpic
Hello all,

Due to a recent job promotion/relocation, I'm semi-seriously considering buying a boat to live aboard year round in Toronto. Aside from the basic amenities, the boat would double as a cruiser for day trips around Lake Ontario. I currently own a C&C 24 on lake st. clair to which I've participated in club regattas and day trips. My needs aren't much, I've temporarily rented a 400 sq. foot apartment in TO which suits me fine.

I've come across a boat that spiked my interest. What do you think? Am I crazy trying to stick out the winters in Toronto? Do you know of any marinas/other boats that are currently doing the same?

YachtWorld.com Boats and Yachts for Sale

Thanks for your insight,

Ryan

Heh...I looked at that boat listing in 2005 when it was $135,000 Canadian. I'm not saying it's a dog, but it certainly hasn't sold since then.

Anyway, putting aside the merits or problems with that particular boat, a 45 footer is pretty large for one person to handle, although it can be done. It's far more in physical forces than just "twice a 24 footer", and there are plenty of costs associated with all that footage as a liveaboard.

That said, it's probably still cheaper to live on through the winter than a Toronto apartment.

Your liveaboard options are somewhat restricted to my knowledge to Port Credit in the west, Bluffers' Park in the east and a couple of marinas downtown. I have friends at Marina Quay West downtown, and they have commented on how it's difficult to keep the boat dry. We have both bought the book "The Warm, Dry Boat", and it's a good start to figuring out how to keep the ventilation optimal to let the warm, moist air out and the cold, dry in.

Be prepared to build a plastic "greenhouse" on deck every winter, and to either hang 2 x 4s or bubblers off the sides to repel ice pans.

Some concessions to your comfort might have to be made, but people do this successfully in the low hundreds every winter in T.O. Good luck!
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post #7 of 18 Old 04-26-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GordMay
Take a look at:
Port Credit Harbour Marina
1 Port St. E. - Port Credit
Tel: (905) 274-1595
Fax: (905) 274-1029
There’s lots of year ‘round live-aboards there.
Be aware that PCYC is some distance from downtown Toronto and it's a long walk to the train station. They are also from reports I hear from a former liveaboard member there attempting to discourage overwintering liveaboards, despite the fact that they constitute a "captive" audience for their restaurant and provide free security for the entire club.

I very much wish I could liveaboard at my own club, but it's too exposed to the open lake and there are insurance issues.
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post #8 of 18 Old 04-26-2007
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Bluffer's Park has quite a few liveaboards - floating houses, house boats and real boats. There's another marina on Unwin Avenue - I think it's Toronto Outer Harbour Marina - liveaboards there as well. Don't know if there's anything right downtown. You could check out the Harbourfront Marina - not sure if they will let you stay year round.

There was a bit of a kerfuffle a few years ago about the floating houses - they weren't paying property taxes, so I think that there is a moratorium on new ones now...but I haven't heard that there are any issues with boats.

Port Credit is probably the least desirable marina to go to. All of the brokers have their offices there and security is really bad. There is also a rule about doing work on your boat there - basically not allowed, because Bristol Marine wants all the business...apart from anything else - it's ugly.

Regardless of which one you go to - you're going to have to have a car.
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post #9 of 18 Old 04-26-2007
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Re: Outer Harbour.

I'm overwintering the big boat there at the moment. I splash May 7.

They haul everything in the winter and it's one of the most desolate, inaccessible and plain windy places on the lake front. Here's a couple of pictures of what happens at Outer Harbour when the wind off the lake hits a cradled but not staked boat (no, this is not in a hurricane zone!)


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post #10 of 18 Old 04-26-2007
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WOW - I'm thinking someone's insurance premium is going way up next year !
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