Join Date: Mar 2007
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If I was going to simply park in a marina and live there, I wouldn't choose a sailboat as the platform. Some kind of motorboat, like a trawler or cockpit motoryacht, or a houseboat would be my choice.
Sailboats are dynamic working machines, and don't make the greatest "floating condos". You'd be investing a lot of your money in a working sail rig/sails/etc, that would rarely get used and would be in the way. The layout of a motoryacht or houseboat is much better for a mostly stationary liveaboard situation.
That wouldn't mean you'd have to give up on letting the kids learn to sail and play around on the water. You'd just get them some kayaks and sailing dinghies and they could have a blast.
All that said, if I was going to be parked in the marina all the time, personally I'd prefer to live ashore. I love boats and sailing and all that, but a big part of the attraction is the ability to roam around freely. Being stationary would wear out quickly for me. I'd be looking at the open houses in no time.
Also, keep in mind that it is much easier to live and cruise aboard a boat, when you are fully unplugged from shoreside society. It is more difficult when you have a foot on shore and one on the boat, especially when it involves kids. You will still be plugged into school systems and related activities, not to mention work. A lot of those shoreside things you'll still have to do will be logistically more difficult from a boat and marina. Maybe it will feel less hectic, maybe not?
There are certainly folks who do it, and hopefully you'll hear from some. I'm just hoping you'll go into it with your eyes wide open, fully realizing the implications. That can be hard to do if you have little or no boating experience.
Just as a random example, do you understand how the toilet plumbing works on a boat? You will need to keep all the "waste" in a tank on your boat. When it fills up, you will have to have the tank pumped out at a pump out station. Depending the size of the tank, with a family of four, you may get 3-5 days between pump outs. And you will always be fretting about the status of that tank -- will it max-out at 2 am one morning, with no more flushes until you can pump it out the day after tomorrow?
Anyway, I am not trying to persuade you one way or the other. But it doesn't sound to me like you have a true appreciation for the realities you will face. Liveaboard life looks perfectly idyllic from a distance, but it actually requires a fair bit of hard work -- just like life ashore. There are plenty of costs, too, so don't assume that it's a no/low-cost existence -- boats, slips, maintenance are all expensive, just like a house ashore.
Best of luck to you.
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Pacific Seacraft Crealock 31 #62
NEVER CALLS CRUISINGDAD BACK....CAN"T TAKE THE ACCENT