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Go Back   SailNet Community > Out There > Cruising & Liveaboard Forum > $3000/mo cruising budget
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Topic Review (Newest First)
8 Hours Ago 05:37 PM
123456Wannasail654321
Re: $3000/mo cruising budget

Quote:
Originally Posted by Don0190 View Post
Determining a cruising budget and trying to find out if it will work seems like one of the most important parts of cruising, yet is one of the hardest to find any answers on. Before I got into sailing I spent 2 years researching the cost issues and in the end kind of just gave up and placed myself on a path to cruising anyway.

The question frequently becomes all jammed up with "it depends" and "it costs whatever you can afford to spend" answers. Which are true, but of little value for planning. Planning becomes even more important for those not so young when the decision to stop working and go cruising equals an end to a career and little chance of returning to work at anywhere near the level they were when they sailed off. The goal becomes balancing leaving while young enough to get the most of of cruising, while working long enough to not run out of money.

But I'm becoming more and more job burnt out and more and more caught in the dream, so find myself looking for the answer. To do it I spend lots of time reading though blogs looking for what people are spending and comparing it to what they are doing. I read things like the "Interview with a Cruiser Project", waste my time on the various forums, and just plain taking a guess based on what it costs me to live on land and maintain my boat now and have a budget in mind.

The budget I'm currently planning for is $3000/mo, which has to cover basically everything. Now this isn't a down and dirty budget, and it isn't a live high budget. But it is expected to be a comfortable budget that allows sightseeing and not eating out of a can budget. And as an average amount is one that I could cruise on till I no longer an able (that $3000/mo, $36,000/yr budget becomes $52,500 when I'm 75 at 2% inflation).

If you are in the cruise for $500/mo group this isn't a thread for you. But if you are in a similar position for cruising on $3000/mo I would love to see comments on what you expect this to mean far as your cruising plans.

I plan on

when my children graduate college (maybe before) I am selling this larger home I have for the family and buying a teeny tiny house/town home/condo for cash.

no debt.

As few monthlies as possible hopefully NONE.

Buying a boat for cash. One that has most of what I want.

27-32 footer 10-15K No loans. proven traditional design (albin vega pearson etc..) So I can go anywhere I want if I choose to.

Small and simple without a ton of expensive whiz bang doodads.

As few thru hulls as possible. (Simpler)
water maker

Anchor out as much as humanly possible. (free)

Prepare my own meals as much as possible (cheaper). I've eaten in tons of restaurants so I know I'm not missing much.

Basically insurance for the boat. Maybe NONE since its so cheap (not monthlies)
I'm not circumnavigating so its doable.



The wife can come if she wants or she can meet me there.

But I will be sailing long before that time.

36 grand is a huge yearly budget. at least to me. I plan on 1000 or less a month
8 Hours Ago 05:26 PM
Don0190
Re: $3000/mo cruising budget

Quote:
Originally Posted by windnrock View Post
With our initial budget of $2000/mo., we will have about $3000 for haul and refit every 6 months!
See here is the thing. In my budget that $3000 for haul/refit is part of the monthly $3000/mo budget. The $3000/mo budget doesn't mean you spend that every month, part of that goes into longer term expenses that will be occurring.
8 Hours Ago 05:09 PM
windnrock
Re: $3000/mo cruising budget

An update on my previous post - My wife and I have been full time cruising for the past year and a half, went to New England for the summer of 2014 and are now in the Bahamas. We have a 41' Bristol (1981) that we restored and upgraded. We have traveled about 4000 nm. With food, fuel, replacement parts and repairs as well as occasional outings and dining out we are managing to do about $1500 per month. Fees entering the Bahamas, when spread over three months is about $120 per month. Anchoring everywhere is free, the wind is free and the fish are free. Sure, we will need to do some haul outs, get new parts and even replace batteries at some point but with 400 watts of solar, wind gen and a watermaker we are pretty self sufficient. A 10 lb. bottle of propane lasts about 2.5 months because we use electric whenever we can with the inverter. We have no mortgage, no electric or water, no property tax and no cars to maintain. The trick is to conserve a portion of the "monthly" expense to build a kitty for future expenditures. With our initial budget of $2000/mo., we will have about $3000 for haul and refit every 6 months! While I do virtually all the work on the boat, I also know every inch of her. I would be doing work around the house and mowing the lawn or shoveling snow too. Sure I do repairs in exotic places, but then again, here I am in exotic places! $3000 is way good to live on! Someone with a smaller, less complex boat could do better than us and easily live on $1000 to $1100 per month. It all depends on the individual and the lifestyle. We also have a large deductible on our Boat Insurance and keep a savings account to cover that and the Health Insurance deductible. That helps keep those amounts down.

"Fair wind and smooth seas!"
9 Hours Ago 04:54 PM
hellosailor
Re: $3000/mo cruising budget

"So Social Security says that I'm going to last to 77.42 years old,"
I find it comforting to know that the government knows my expiry date, down to the tenth of a day. Takes a lot of worry out of life.
11 Hours Ago 02:05 PM
travlineasy
Re: $3000/mo cruising budget

Jon, I'm a real cheapskate when it comes to repairs and maintenance - I do most of it myself. Sure, there are times when this old codger cannot crawl into the engine room, but most of the time I can fix what is broke and at very little cost. I'll spend some boat bucks this spring, though. 3G radar, Honda 2000i and autohelm will run me about $4,000, but that will be the last big expenditures on this boat, and I think I might get some of it back when the boat is sold, but not much, though.

Believe it or not, much of the time I'm within that $500 a month category while cruising, and if I do go over that amount, it's usually not by much.

Cheers,

Gary
13 Hours Ago 12:22 PM
killarney_sailor
Re: $3000/mo cruising budget

Don
Not sure where you are planning to cruise, but in general I think you should be just fine on $3000 (or less) per month. I would be inclined to aim to spend considerably less per month and build a surplus for those unexpected items and opportunities. We have had months where we spent $0 and other months where we spent $10,000 plus (we just bought two new sails and cockpit canvas).

It gets tricky looking 10 or 20 years into the future because who can predict things like inflation, currency differences (in the last year cruising for Americans has gotten much cheaper while it has gotten more expensive for Canadians, Aussies, and Europeans), and market trends.
13 Hours Ago 12:14 PM
chuck5499
Re: $3000/mo cruising budget

Quote:
Originally Posted by Don0190 View Post
Been playing with the spreadsheet (what else is there to do boating wise in the frozen world). A recent real world numbers thread elsewhere got me to thinking that $3500/mo might be more reasonable (though not giving up on the $3k/mo yet) and that made me look more into the impact. Turns out that $3500/mo cuts the kitty to lasting till 81, and if I go up to $4k to 76. But that is assuming a lowery 0.5% interest because that seemed safe. If I go to 3-5% I made it into my 80s.

So Social Security says that I'm going to last to 77.42 years old, my plan works on paper and that is about the best I can hope for.
We put our 6 years of cost data out here someplace but this forum will not take excel data so someone put it on but it hard to use.

When we were in the Caribbean we spent between $2,500 and $3,000 a year. Now in then Med last summer we sailed over 3,000nm, did 31 ports of call, made inland trips to Albania, Macedona, Kosovo and Serbia. We had to get a new main sail and it cost us about $3,500 for the year.
Good luck
15 Hours Ago 10:19 AM
Don0190
Re: $3000/mo cruising budget

Been playing with the spreadsheet (what else is there to do boating wise in the frozen world). A recent real world numbers thread elsewhere got me to thinking that $3500/mo might be more reasonable (though not giving up on the $3k/mo yet) and that made me look more into the impact. Turns out that $3500/mo cuts the kitty to lasting till 81, and if I go up to $4k to 76. But that is assuming a lowery 0.5% interest because that seemed safe. If I go to 3-5% I made it into my 80s.

So Social Security says that I'm going to last to 77.42 years old, my plan works on paper and that is about the best I can hope for.
11-02-2014 08:59 PM
windnrock
Re: $3000/mo cruising budget

$3000 per month is very doable. We budget at about $2000 have a 41 foot boat, international insurance for both the boat and health and fly occasionally. We stay on the hook, limit our restaurant spending and do almost all maintenance and repairs ourselves. We do go out, we do shop and we absolutely enjoy our life!
10-30-2014 08:49 AM
Group9
Re: $3000/mo cruising budget

So much of your maintenance budget depends of how good you are at figuring out how to fix things.

I will give an example: My ST4000 RayMarine Autopilot broke one day, coming into a pass with some pretty good waves (where I probably shouldn't have had it engaged).

There were three options to fix it:

1. New autopilot - cost $1500 to $2500

2. Replacement drive unit - $550

3. Take the thing completely apart myself, figure out what was wrong with it, and replace the six (out of 9) little plastic gears that I found had been stripped. cost - $45

I picked #3. But, someone who would have picked #1 or #2 option, is definitely going to need to set more money aside for maintenance than I have to have.
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