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post #51 of 103 Old 12-11-2012
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Re: How did you get the money for your first sailboat?

My second boat was purchased as a sears overstock for $100. Brand new Sea Snark (styrofoam)... For the record, that was 1982. Also for the record, that is STILL being sailed. YEP you heard me, my brother (irony) has it in his possesion, and he had to make a new sail for it about 10 years ago. But the boat still sails, and still floats. It's go about 40 acres of dings in the foam, but it'll never sink! So yeah 30+ yo styrofoam sailboat still working.
My first boat was the same. 1978?? Used. $45.00. Cash from savings. Last seen 10 years ago still sailing. Same 40 acres of dings. Then GF, now wife made me a new sail.

Always paid cash for my toys and transportation. All my life.

Posts 2 through 6 are the reality for the most part.

My last boat. Cash from savings. Worked over 325 days a year for 7+ years.

Keep dreaming.

I was pretty lucky for a couple of years. Was making minimum wage and an anesthesiologist had a Cheoy Lee Offshore 32 (?). I got to use it and crew for maintenance work. Such a deal for a 20 yr old eh? Sailing someone else's 100k boat. Heh!

Varnishing the mast on a flat board with no safety line didn't seem stupid at all. Kept you on your toes.
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post #52 of 103 Old 12-11-2012
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Re: How did you get the money for your first sailboat?

I don't have my boat yet, but I do have $11,500 saved in the 'boat fund' so I'll tell you the route I took.

As someone else did above, I also went the 'carless' route. My car payments, insurance, gas, and parking tickets amounted to about $500 a month. I sold the car, job pays for metro, and the savings go in the boat fund. I bought a Vespa to get around town, still take a nice vacation a year, save the maximum in my 401K, and eat out at restaurants. But no car. I've gotten many raises in my career, but nothing like getting rid of the damn car. They just eat money. The only catch is you have to have some way to get to work.

Edited to add: my partner does have a car, so I'm not too worried about getting to the boat once I've bought it, although clearly that would also present a snag in this plan.

Last edited by emcentar; 12-11-2012 at 08:53 PM.
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post #53 of 103 Old 12-12-2012
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Re: How did you get the money for your first sailboat?

Originally Posted by chef2sail View Post
My wife was. Dont take this the wrong way as I have the utmost respect and admiration for her and what she has accomplished and learned about boating in the last 10 years,
She goes offshore every year now to LI Sound and New England, has cbartered in the Carribean and in Long Beach California.

I only met her 10 years ago and been married 8 years, She didnt even swm when I met her let alone sail.

Donnas first our 35 C&C. When ever she mentions the "room" factor I remind her she started with the "silver spoon" a 35 footer and didnt come up through the ranks.
I love her just the same

My wife's first boat was my Niagara 35, so she was spoiled. It was her idea that we needed a bigger boat, so I went along with it. It was her idea that we should circumnavigate, so I went along with it. Waiting for her next idea.
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After the refit we have decided to sell Ainia. We want something smaller that would be could for the light summer winds of Lake Ontario, although we plan to spend at least a couple of winters in the Caribbean before heading north.
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post #54 of 103 Old 12-12-2012
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Re: How did you get the money for your first sailboat?

Over the course of all the boats I've had I have done the following in order to get them (in no particular order): saved, worked a LOT, done side jobs, partnered with my brother, borrowed from (Dad, kids college fund, my business, savings, etc), sold stuff, drove beater cars and bought derelict boats that needed extensive work. About the only thing I haven't done to feed my addiction is steal:-))
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post #55 of 103 Old 12-12-2012
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Re: How did you get the money for your first sailboat?

Both of my boats had titles and were free! Well, free is a misleading term... I didn't have to pay to buy them, but I've spent some money fixing them! My first is a 1980 Compac 16, that I rescued from under a tree for the previous 10 years, I took this:

And after 3 months of sweat equity, and about $550, I had gotten it to this point:

I still need to some minor gel coat repairs, paint the topsides and bottom, as well as buff the hull out. However, everything left is cosmetic, the rigging was all replaced by the previous owner and it had two sets of sails, one set had only been used for one season.

Free boat #2, a 1983 Starwind 22(same basic design as the Chrysler 22):

I've spent just under $500 so far on this one, and I figure I'll have another $1000 to $1500 into it before I'm done. Thankfully it also came with multiple sets of sails(some new).

I keep costs low by doing almost all repairs myself, but I am fortunate to have all the necessary tools and equipment, as well as enough hands on experience to perform the repairs by myself. I have a lot of hours invested in fixing up my boats, but it is also a hobby that I enjoy, so it doesn't seem like work to me. The challenge is fun.

As you can see, I need a tow vehicle, it costs me about $560/month to cover payment, insurance, registration, gas, and maintenance for my truck. However, I have 3 kids, and my truck is our second family vehicle, so I don't consider it a boat expense in my case.

My requirements when looking at derelict sailboats:
1. They must have a transferable title!!!
2. They must be complete( no missing mast, sails, rudder, etc.)
3. Hull and deck must be in good shape.

I am also able to store both my boats for free because they are on trailers, so I don't rack up storage fees. Do you like working on things? If not, owning a boat may not be for you. I picked up both of my boats from previous owners who paid a lot of money for them used, but they didn't like to work on things. Boats require constant maintenance, even on a trailer.

I have at times packed lunch, quit buying my morning cup of coffee on my way to work, etc. to pay for parts/materials for my boats. You'd be amazed how much money it adds up to a month!

Last edited by Smier; 12-12-2012 at 01:50 PM.
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post #56 of 103 Old 12-12-2012
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Re: How did you get the money for your first sailboat?

I guess I represent a different view. A lot of comments on this thread include "worked a lot" or "worked hard". Coming from the old continent, were we rather work to live as opposed living to work (how otherwise to have time to actually use the boat if one is working all the time). My first boat was 4 yrs old 27ft and paid with a balance of downpayment and marine financing. I do not have any regrets doing that.
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post #57 of 103 Old 12-12-2012
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Re: How did you get the money for your first sailboat?

I don't think anyone is against financing a boat...
It's still better financial sense to pay for a boat outright (if you can)... Actually better said would be to NOT buy a boat at all! It's a luxury after all.

I had 2 contracts on 2 new boats that I backed out of for one reason or another before I gave up, and paid cash for a used boat.

Buying a used boat was a disagreement my wife and I had before I bought my Capri 22. In retrospect it taught me something... mainly, a well built older boat, that has had ANY care of it, can be restored to "like new" or even better (broke in if you will) with very little money, and only a modest amount of time.

Quote for my first keelboat new, was $23,525, boat motor, and trailer (one roller furler 135, and main)... My used keelboat same model but 25 years old was $4800, with boat, motor and trailer (all operational), and 1 roller furler 110, 2 mains, and a spinnaker. The boat was dirty, trailer lights needed some rewiring. There were cosmetic dings on the boat... and I probably put about $1000 into the boat in "upgrades," which included bottom paint and all. Then turned around and sold the boat 1 year later for $5500. So I lost money, but not a lot.

To Smier: You got some really good deals on those two boats, and did a helluva job bringing them back. Proof of my point above, sometimes used can mean free, or at least starting at free. Hard to argue a Compac 16 isn't a well built boat (that holds value).

That being said, I know what a NEW boat smell is, and some of the hassle of things not working is gone (plus you get new crisp sails, note I just said SOME of the hassle, I could tell you stories of my dads NEW boat purchase ugh)... I don't think financing is evil... its just not always the best way to start, especially if your budget is tight. Again, I nearly did it twice so I am not against the idea.

If new boats (that I were interested in) weren't so crazy expensive I'd consider it... I hear Jim Lee has a really nice boat he builds that I wish were a little closer to my price range!

Meanwhile I'll be sinking money good and bad into my 30yo boat, knowing full well I'll never see that money back. IN the meantime though, it'll be fun to sail!
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post #58 of 103 Old 12-12-2012
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Re: How did you get the money for your first sailboat?

First sailboat: Catalina 13. I was in college (only 7 years ago), had been making money posting ads to help people move couches/refrigerators/whatever with my brand new pickup truck. $30/hr and booked my weekends doing that for cash. $1,000 for the Catalina Capri 13 Cyclone. Sold it for $1200 once I got a weekend part-time job and was still in college, but had no more time for sailing.

Second Boat: Prindle 16. It cost me $0 because a friend needed to sell it due to him moving. Although, I immediately put about $1500 into it, then sold it 2 years later (well worth the $$$ for the memories) for $600. I told myself I'll still pay him the $300 he had been listing it for.

Third boat - Current: Catalina 30. I had saved and earned the cash from 4 years of valeting cars while in college, and managing a small company. At the tippy-top of my budget, its cost was $15000 from a list price of $24,999. But we all know, just purchasing a boat is expensive. $1000 for 2 surveyors (boat, rigging) and a haul out to survey it. $1400 to register it. several hundred for immediate upgrades to expired safety equipment and cleaning supplies. A couple months later a bottom job, a stuffing box repair, I was probably drained of $18-$20k since purchasing it in September.

Thankful for a credit limit and steady income.
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post #59 of 103 Old 12-12-2012
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Re: How did you get the money for your first sailboat?

The old fashioned way...I earned it (well, that and good credit)...

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1982 Islander Bahama 30
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post #60 of 103 Old 12-12-2012
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Re: How did you get the money for your first sailboat?

Originally Posted by IamJohnGalt View Post
So starting to really think I need to get a boat and just sail over doing all these courses, but being a full time student, money is an issue.

How did you come to take ownership of your first boat, and what do you suggest for someone looking to get their first? (Still want a contessa 26 or 32)

-Snow laden economics major, sailer to be.

A lot of great stories here, I really admire you folks that saved and waited patiently for years to get your boats...

I wont bother you with "first boats" because they were stinkpot's, small ones, but stinkpot's nonetheless The first sailboat registered in my name was a 20' Buccaneer for all of $400. It was my wifes first boat and my first sailboat ownership. We had so much fun with it for three seasons. It reminds reality, its about being out on the water, no matter what the boat. I have as many great sailing memories on that little POS as I do on any other boat. Anyway, with kids on the way, the Buc wasn't going to cut it and we purchased our current boat in 2005. I'm not interested in having twofootitestis every few years, rather get the boat we wanted and could grow into as we gain experience.

I must admit, I don't have much we chose to use some savings and we financed the rest for 10 years (we're almost owners, 3 more years!) What we didn't budget for was a new engine, so we have had to wait until we saved enough to purchase one, two years on the hard paying dry storage fees, now that hurts (but the engine is paid for )

My advice FWIW, get a boat, anything you can practically afford now and enjoy it. There are some steals out there to be had. I was just talking to a guy at the marina the other day who just got himself a very nice Cal 31 in great shape for about $10,000.

Life is to precious and sometimes too short to wait, thats my philosophy anyway...go for it and make whatever sacrifice you need to realize your dreams

Last edited by T37Chef; 12-14-2012 at 07:23 AM.
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