So. CA and Live aboards
I am getting on waiting lists in So. CA marinas in anticipation of moving aboard in 4 years, when my son graduates high school. I'm leary of asking about live aboard availability, as I don't want to be "flagged" as undesirable. Does anyone have any advice on the process of getting a slip...Do I tell them I intend to live aboard? Do I just move in and worry about it later? I'm looking at Dana Point, Oceanside, Newport Beach...Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
Well, don't know the exact rules, but the rule of thumb at DP and I think many others is, liveaboards are limited to 10% of the overall slips and it must be 36' or above, which has a 6-20 yr waiting list depending on size, also DP has started a major over haul that will go on over the next 20yrs with plans to eliminate 500+ slip and reconfigure the rest.
I too am on the list at DP ( I have one now ) for a larger slip with intention to liveaboard, right now we're spending a lot of time on a boat under 30' for durations from 3 day to as long as 10 days with little, if anything is said.
We also have a new 45 footer in Harbor Island, but HI is a bitch to get too and sail out of compared to DP or Oceanside, but we're kinda stuck there for now and once out of the harbor, it don't really matter anyhow, Oceanside is a neat little harbor, but it's got the same problem as the rest, long waiting list, however their slip are transferable if ya buy a boat from someone there.
That probably did help ya a damn bit, but that's what I know......
Marinas in SoCal are following the lead of Almar and Vintage and the "chain" marinas, of decreasing slips in favor of larger slips. In many cases the result is loss of 500 - 600 under 30 ft slips per harbor. Why are the little boats being locked out? The marina's reply is that these boats can very well be put in dry storage. Well, that's not necessarily true, but as the marinas are being reconfigured for larger boats, the rates triple, and although 10% may be allocated for liveaboard, they aren't allowing any liveaboards. Go figure.
And cost of boat slip fees go up. In my case, from $7.50 per month per foot to $21.35 per month, to make up for the loss of revenue of eliminating small boats. (of course everybody knows big boat owners are rich). Fewer boats, more money. Why are they doing this? Because they can. And Marinas are big money so they have all the local politicians in their pocket. Here in Ventura we have the best politicians money can buy. Bigger boats = bigger slip fees (which the county takes 10%) and bigger personal tax revenue for local government.
The latest tactic applied to liveaboards rather than a flat fee of say 50 - 100 dollars extra, is to charge half again the slip fee. That means if you're a 36' boat, you're charged at a 54 ft rate and of course, electricity and telephone line charges are extra.
So, you want to live aboard? Figure with boat payments, slip fees, permits, incidentals, and "view tax" it's about the same as a mortgage on a 4 br, 3 acre home in NC. And, it's not getting any better in regards to slips. Without competition, no additional slips are being added.
Thanks for the thoughts
Poopdeck...I had always liked Harbor Island but I would like something farther north of SD so my commute isn't too long. Oceanside would be perfect and I'm hoping to get in there. Thanks for the info on DP. I don't quite believe them when they say 38+ slips will be opening up quite rapidly over the next 5 years. Yes, I see the plans in the papers and they have promoted their changes very well but...my current marina reconfigured one dock of 20 slips and it took them over two years. I don't hold out much faith that the project will move quickly.
Thanks Ianhlnd for the note. I know...not much cheaper than land but I'm not doing to save money, althought that would have been a nice perk. It is disgusting how the marina's have us in their back pocket and there is nothing we can do about it.
What gets me, beyond my own personal disgust with marinas, is that no matter how hard sailor's try to get new people interested in sailing, when it comes right down to it, any newbie is going to be put off by having no where to put a boat or not being able to afford the hobbie. The marinas are helping keep the sport out of the reach of many, to say the least.
Are you at the end of "M" dock ?
If so, We met two weeks ago saturday evening. You gave us GREAT advice on solar panels and those ultra quitet generators.
We'll see you this weekend!
Ventura Harbor has a liveaboard marina that can accomidate 50% live aboard capacity. It's the only one that I know of in SoCal. Might be a bit of a commute for you though!
When I bought my boat here in Marina del Rey I tried to be above board and would tell the dock masters that I was looking for a live aboard slip. Not one location would accept me. In frustration I decided to just get a slip and deal with issues as they arose. The next time I applied for a slip I was told, “no live aboard’s” to which I promptly smiled and responded with “no problem”. I signed my one year lease and moved the boat into the slip.
For months I kept a low profile, used dark curtains to mask interior lights and got to know some of the other sneak aboards that were around. As time went on I slipped into a more normal routine. The dock master noticed me around more often but never said a word about my being there and in time we even became friends. I’ve been living aboard for 5 years now, have the greatest neighbors, and even co-host the annual 4th of July party complete with a band. I think if you keep your boat maintained, the dock clear and you are a friendly, upstanding kind of person there is no issue.
On the subject of upgrading the marinas I have to say that the developers are certainly making life hard for those who own boats. One redevelopment in the marina removed 500 slips several years ago and are just now rebuilding. As you can imagine this caused a shortage of slips and the remaining operators started jacking up the prices and being very selective. When the project is done there will be fewer slips, the smallest of which is 35 feet. The developers want large, new boats so that the box people can look out their windows or sit on their balconies and have a view.
It’s a shame that the developers have forgotten what the marinas were built for. Smaller boats and older boats are being pushed out, small businesses are folding because the county charges them 3% to 5% of their gross revenues, and new apartments and condos are quadrupling density with an equal increase in traffic. Won’t be long before us pesky boaters are in the way. Sorry about the rant.
Best of luck
Humm, if all goes well I’ll be heading out some time this year to start cruising and my 45 foot slip will be empty… do I hear any offers? J
Sorry didn't get back to post recently. Yeah, that's me on the end of M, well for now anyway. Looking a little shabby with this foul weather we've had, but that's OK, will get the bright work done in Baja in a few months.
Typical of California marinas, like sailguy42 says, local govts and marina operators are forcing a lot of people out of sailing with their "new" marketing techniques. Here in CI Harbor, the're building a sailing center to get people interested in sailing, and decreasing slips by several hundred (27 to 30 ft range) . . . .HUH? I must be missing something, but I don't know of many first time sailors buying 40 ft boats to learn on.
Stop by if you get the chance
Ventura does indeed have a marina (2) that allows 50% liveaboards. I was on their waiting list for a couple years (with deposit). I had forgotten about the deposit til I came back one spring and got a slip at VIM.
Two harbors 5 miles apart, one operated by the county (CIH), the other by the city (VH). In one the businesses are dying, in the other doing well. If you guessed VH as the one doing well, you're right. Make your own summations as to why.
If it wasn't for the CI national park, I sure wouldn't be here.
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