Originally Posted by killarney_sailor
Interesting responses and pretty much what I anticipated. I think that in 20 (or more years) most of the quality boats of today (that may already be 30+ years old) will be around and probably in good condition since they have doting owners. My understanding of the used boat market today is that there are relatively few used boats less than 10 years old (not a surprise since the number of new boats being sold 10 years ago was not high) and lots of boats from the 1970s to 1980s, that are proving to be hard to sell. In 2030, there could be a lot of boats for sale that are 50 to 60 years old and still going strong - and still not many relatively new boats because a quality boat today is so costly. The nearest comparitor to my boat that I could find in new market (and it is not perfect, but both cruising boats of similar displacement) was the Island Packet 46 (or thereabouts) and it was something over $700,000.
Combine this with Paulo's European perspective and it is quite interesting.
Another comment regarding European Market:
The importance Europeans give to more modern boats has nothing to do with the one given by Americans. The difference is so big that many Americans consider that a 20 year's old designed boat can be better than a modern designed boat. This kind of thought would be unthinkable to an European that values all the improvements racing has brought to sailboats and not only racing but interior design.
If an European is wealthy enough it will trade its boat when it is 4 to 6 years old, if it is not that wealthy but has the money for a new boat, each 6 to 10 years and only a very small minority among those who can buy a new boat, will maintain his boat more than 10 years.
Basically this shows several things:
That people want to benefice from the latest improvements in boat: hull rig and interior design (the one that race the boats are among the ones that keep their boats less time).
That the ones that can has no desire in losing time doing boat maintenance.
That an old boat gives no status
That's why you find so many European 10 year old boats on the Market.
Well, things are changing, crisis and all, but if the development model that brought us to the point we are today (consumerism/capitalism model) went on as on the last 20 years I think that in some years you would not have here a market for 30 or 40 year's old boats. Nobody would want them because the price of their maintenance and marina costs would be so high that would not compensate the trouble and the inconveniences of having an old boat with a very outdated design and less efficient design.
Of course, some exceptions will apply, like very special and expensive boats that we can consider classics an that will reward its owners with status and prestige. It would not be different with the market car: Who wants to own a 30 year's old car (and pay it's expensive maintenance) if he can have a new model? Only if that old car is a prestige Jaguar, Rools-Royce or something like that. Those will retain value if not the same comfort of a new model from the same segment and will not be used every-day but only on special occasions.
A final comment between European and American market: On Europe sailboat market is a main market in what regards sailboats, meaning that the ones that have money to buy them new want them. On the United States it is a very secondary market meaning that the ones that have money to buy them would buy a motor boat instead.
This explains why on the Europe there is a large percentage of boats with less than 10 years while on the US they are quite few. Someone has pointed out on another thread that it seems to be changing on the US, I mean with prestige advertisements with sailboats as scenery. Well, that would give me a big satisfaction. That would not also boost the boat market as the global interest in sailing that is much higher in Europe than in states and that means more sponsors for racing and boat development