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Go Back   SailNet Community > Contributing Authors > Buying a Boat Articles
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Old 02-28-1999
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Sue & Larry is on a distinguished road
Is New Better than Old?

We have been looking at 15-to-20-year-old Morgan 38s. What influenced you to buy a new boat that typically has such high cost and attendant depreciation in its first five years of life? Undoubtedly a new boat will typically cost less to maintain than an older one, unless you throw in the depreciation on the new boat. Am I overlooking something?

Ed Doran

Sue and Larry respond:

You haven't overlooked anything with regards to your new-boat vs used-boat analysis. You simply made the wrong career choice. Sue worked for Beneteau for 11 years and we were able to purchase Safari at a price that made it an OK investment for us. And, yes, we bought it outright. We don't believe in financing.

As for the boat you are looking at, I think you are on the right track. Just last week we were anchored in Key West and a Morgan 38 went by. I turned to Sue and said, "If we were just starting cruising and looking for a lot of boat for the money, that would be it!"

There's no question that having a new boat has its advantages in space, design, maintenance, etc., but most boats out there cruising are of the age (and size) that you're looking at. No doubt this is due to people wanting to cruise on something that is already purchased in full.

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