Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: New England
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I'd point out that many marinas have a minimum length for liveaboard status and many charge additional fees for livingaboard privileges. Many marinas are not open year round in the Northeastern United States, so you may not be able to liveaboard during the winter.
Many will not accept a $5000 sailboat as a liveaboard boat, either due to size or condition. Most marinas don't want to have what appears to be a derelict boat sitting in their facility, and most any boat that is large enough to meet their size requirements will look like a derelict at that price.
I'd also point out that most boats below 30' LOA do NOT HAVE A SHOWER, either in the head or separate. This is also true of many older boats that are greater than 30' LOA. Having a shower on a boat is a relatively recent development and is generally restricted to more recent, larger boats that have a pressure water system, hot water, and the room to fit a shower.
Most smaller, older boats, will not have refrigeration. Refrigeration is also a relatively new development in boats. Many long distance cruisers don't have refrigeration due to its expense and inherent unreliability. Some refrigeration systems are engine driven and ill suited to liveaboard use, since they would require you to run the engine to keep the refrigerator running. A 12 VDC system would be a better choice.
Adding heat to a boat will probably cost at least $500, if you do all the work yourself. Marine heating units are not inexpensive. Fitting one on a very small boat could also be an issue. You would also have to insulate the boat, since most boats are not insulated. Many small boats, especially older ones, do not have the necessary shore-power wiring to allow you to use a 110 VAC heater aboard, so that may be an additional cost to installing electric heat. Diesel heat is probably a much better idea, but is going to be even more expensive than electric heat. However, it will probably be more cost-effective over the long run.
Do you have any skills in terms of boat maintenance or repair? Can you do carpentry, fiberglass repair, plumbing, electrical work, mechanical work??? If not, then any modifications to your boat are going to be VERY VERY expensive, since most boatyards charge at least $80-100 per hour.
Also, do you have any plans for where to stay if you need to vacate your boat for any period of time, as many boatyards will not allow you to liveaboard if the boat is hauled out for repair.
These are just some of the considerations you have think about in order to liveaboard in the northeastern US.
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.
óCpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)
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StillóDON'T READ THAT POST AGAIN.
Last edited by sailingdog; 04-26-2010 at 11:32 PM.