In Real Estate, it's the "Three L's". In used sailboat purchasing it's the "Three C's"; Condition, Condition, Condtion!!!!
And, don't let any internet critics sway you away from any boat that you like and is in good condition. Just by your first post, I have this feeling that this won't be your last sailboat purchase, so shop accordingly. The Previous Owner(s) will have everything to do with this first one, as current condition is all a product of good maintenance. Shop around, take plenty of sea trials, and the "right" one will speak to you. Good luck and keep us posted.
On a related side note, I was in your shoes only a few years ago. Practically EVERY "online sailing professional" (lol) recommended NOT to purchase a Bayliner/US Yacht. So, what did I do? I bought one. It was a small 22', fin keel. I still miss that boat. She sailed like a champ and was quicker than she should've been, and I had zero problems. Plus, I "made a little" when she got sold. Just another worthless 2 cents.
Last edited by emoney; 10-21-2011 at 05:08 PM.