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  #1  
Old 02-03-2011
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Unhappy Advice needed

I've been looking for liveaboards in the SF bay for three weeks but I've only found four in the whole bay! I've been searching craigslist which used to be good in the past and I haven't found them anywhere else. I need to rent a boat to live on soon, I really don't want to rent an apartment. If anyone knows how I can find liveaboard rentals please let me know.
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Old 02-03-2011
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Most people don't rent boats as liveaboards. Doing so would require them to have commercial insurance, which is far more expensive than non-commercial insurance. Also, it would be far more profitable and cause less wear/tear on the boat to charter it than have someone liveaboard it.

Almost all liveaboards own the boat they live on. If you're not looking to buy a boat, you're probably not going to have much chance of living aboard one.
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Old 02-03-2011
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That makes good sense but I remember seeing lots of them only a year ago so I was wondering if I was just looking in the wrong place. It seems like the Sausalito area has the largest community of liveaboards/houseboats but I'm not seeing many ads. As far as insurance goes maybe they just don't report it that way (I'm only speculating).
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnqboater View Post
That makes good sense but I remember seeing lots of them only a year ago so I was wondering if I was just looking in the wrong place. It seems like the Sausalito area has the largest community of liveaboards/houseboats but I'm not seeing many ads. As far as insurance goes maybe they just don't report it that way (I'm only speculating).
You might want to check Latitude 38.
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Old 02-03-2011
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Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Most people don't rent boats as liveaboards. Doing so would require them to have commercial insurance, which is far more expensive than non-commercial insurance. Also, it would be far more profitable and cause less wear/tear on the boat to charter it than have someone liveaboard it.

Almost all liveaboards own the boat they live on. If you're not looking to buy a boat, you're probably not going to have much chance of living aboard one.
I dropped in on this thread because we are in the South Bay now. Our experience has been that it is difficult to find a live aboard berth even if you DO own your boat. While looking for a slip I ran into other folks in the same situation. In fact, every marina I went to but 1 stated flatly "No live aboard slips available" That one was Docktown.

Of course, we have found that there is always a move
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Old 02-03-2011
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Thanks for the Lattitude 38 suggestion, it seems like most of their boats are priced higher than craigslist. I will check out Docktown, I can always move in and keep looking. Maybe I'll take the suggestion to buy boat but it would have to be owner financed, I'm sure that's a joy to find as well.
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Old 02-03-2011
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I do want to offer a different position on this - many boat owners who rarely use their boats do consider opportunities to have someone stay aboard to maintain the boat. Some even allow this for free. I can't tell you how many times through the years I've encountered this -

Of course marinas may not have space for another person living aboard, but you get the boat and the slip without having to buy anything at all. Until recently, a fellow nearby had lived on a boat for 4 or 5 years free, maintaining the boat, and had never seen the owner except for the very first day he moved aboard.

It's amazing what you can find if you post an ad on the local boards, the local cork board, etc. Opportunities really are out there.

Mark Nicholas
Living Aboard | The Essentials of Living Aboard a Boat by Mark Nicholas | Living Aboard.net
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Old 02-03-2011
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Latitude 38 is the best place to start. There are fewer and fewer livaboard marinas in the bay, and with the housing prices the way they are a lot of demand. Sausalito used to have quite a few, but many were cleared out.

Call Around - in the South Bay Redwood City have a limited number of slips available, as does Pete's Harbor. Most of the harbor masters seem to have time to chat, and may give you some ideas.
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Old 02-04-2011
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Latitude 38 is the best place to start. There are fewer and fewer livaboard marinas in the bay, and with the housing prices the way they are a lot of demand. Sausalito used to have quite a few, but many were cleared out.

Call Around - in the South Bay Redwood City have a limited number of slips available, as does Pete's Harbor. Most of the harbor masters seem to have time to chat, and may give you some ideas.
We are in the South Bay now, have talked to Giorgio at Pete's Harbor, Ian at Bair Island, the Redwood City Harbor Master, Paul at Docktown and Mark at Westpoint. Only Docktown admitted to having slips for permanent live aboards. We were able to secure moorage only because we are bona fide transients. Westpoint is adding slips right now and, as a result will have a few more live aboard moorings available soon but this is a very expensive, brand new marina - first class in every way and worth the price IMO - but pricey. Mark Sanford, the Harbor Master is very choosy about whom he lets in and the rules are strict. Westpoint is the polar opposite of Docktown. More like a huge Yacht Club. When we tell people where we are moored they are astonished and usually ask how we got in here. Mark turns a lot of people away.

Docktown, on the other hand, has a certain...charm; if you do not mind the trailer park and the work-furlough program and sherrif's station next door; and of course having your keel in the mud except at high tide. I have to say, though, that the folks at Docktown seem a friendly bunch. They have their own, very egalitarian, yacht club and Paul, the Harbor Master seems a nice sort. When I spoke with him a few weeks ago they had LA slips available.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vega1860 View Post
We are in the South Bay now, have talked to Giorgio at Pete's Harbor, Ian at Bair Island, the Redwood City Harbor Master, Paul at Docktown and Mark at Westpoint. Only Docktown admitted to having slips for permanent live aboards. We were able to secure moorage only because we are bona fide transients. Westpoint is adding slips right now and, as a result will have a few more live aboard moorings available soon but this is a very expensive, brand new marina - first class in every way and worth the price IMO - but pricey. Mark Sanford, the Harbor Master is very choosy about whom he lets in and the rules are strict. Westpoint is the polar opposite of Docktown. More like a huge Yacht Club. When we tell people where we are moored they are astonished and usually ask how we got in here. Mark turns a lot of people away.

Docktown, on the other hand, has a certain...charm; if you do not mind the trailer park and the work-furlough program and sherrif's station next door; and of course having your keel in the mud except at high tide. I have to say, though, that the folks at Docktown seem a friendly bunch. They have their own, very egalitarian, yacht club and Paul, the Harbor Master seems a nice sort. When I spoke with him a few weeks ago they had LA slips available.
If it is not too far away from where you will be working, you might want to check Marina Bay in Richmond. There are several liveaboards there. I know, we have a slip for our boat there and there are about 5 on our finger.
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