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post #1 of 12 Old 07-05-2018 Thread Starter
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Question Buying A Sailboat During Hurricane Season?

Is now the best time to look for a used sailboat being it's hurricane season?

I'm told its a buyers market.

Maybe it's due to fear from the last two seasons I don't know, but I'm finding sellers are a whole lot more negotiable on price since a few years ago on what they want and what they will actually take even before the survey.

Or maybe it's just getting old paying all those fee's on a sailboat they no longer want/enjoy...
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post #2 of 12 Old 07-05-2018
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Re: Buying A Sailboat During Hurricane Season?

Depends on what you are looking for, older boats under 35 feet in Florida - its a huge buyers market - there is a lot of junk but a lot of good older boats out there - no reason to overpay - boats under $25K are mostly sold by owners not brokers - Cal, Catalina, Ericson, Hunter 30's can all go for under $10K - don't buy anything with structural damage ( soft spots) - and remember if you buy a Catalina 30 for $10K and put $10K more in it - its still only worth $10K

If you found something you like - make sure the owner knows you are serious and a cash buyer and offer 50% of asking price - he might not accept - but give him a while - it might be acceptable a month later after a few storm warnings and no other offers.
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post #3 of 12 Old 07-05-2018
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Re: Buying A Sailboat During Hurricane Season?

IMO only two things really affect the prices on boats.
First and foremost are the seasons. Spring and summer boat prices are higher than in the fall and winter, if the owner is serious about selling. By the time hurricane season is upon them, most owners already have insurance, so that shouldn't be a factor. I understand these days that if a boat does not have continuity of insurance, it is much more difficult to get a policy, something you might want to check out.
The other is faith in the economy. I bought this boat in August 2009, at the bottom of the market and with fall, and then winter fast approaching. I purchased @ around 60% of asking. No way the PO wanted to spend money, in that economic environment, on dockage and insurance for another 9 months.
I'm not sure how many are feeling really positive about the economy with these trade wars looming, so it might be a good time to buy. Boats and RV's are the first things to go on the block when folks begin to get antsy about their economic future. However, as a buyer, you might wish to develop a hurricane plan for your new boat!

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post #4 of 12 Old 07-05-2018
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Re: Buying A Sailboat During Hurricane Season?

I think long term trends are actually more of a factor, at least with the 60's-70's sturdy classic plastics.

Fewer younger / poorer people are embracing the lifestyle.

Many oldies can afford newer bigger and more comfortable boats, that's where the market demand is, so prices there are relatively higher.

These smaller more spartan but very robust boats are also just getting older, so for most, getting one shipshape, even just transportation costs, end up being more than the actual acquisition price.

Yes some are in bristol condition & ready to get out there, at 5x the price of the project boats, even more of a bargain overall, but

harder to find - time energy and patience in the search are well rewarded.
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post #5 of 12 Old 07-05-2018 Thread Starter
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Re: Buying A Sailboat During Hurricane Season?

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Originally Posted by capta View Post
IMO only two things really affect the prices on boats.
First and foremost are the seasons. Spring and summer boat prices are higher than in the fall and winter, if the owner is serious about selling. By the time hurricane season is upon them, most owners already have insurance, so that shouldn't be a factor. I understand these days that if a boat does not have continuity of insurance, it is much more difficult to get a policy, something you might want to check out.
The other is faith in the economy. I bought this boat in August 2009, at the bottom of the market and with fall, and then winter fast approaching. I purchased @ around 60% of asking. No way the PO wanted to spend money, in that economic environment, on dockage and insurance for another 9 months.
I'm not sure how many are feeling really positive about the economy with these trade wars looming, so it might be a good time to buy. Boats and RV's are the first things to go on the block when folks begin to get antsy about their economic future. However, as a buyer, you might wish to develop a hurricane plan for your new boat!
Yes, I was shocked at how many I've looked at where the owners had no insurance on them at all, I would say to myself don't they want to protect their investment?

People I know personally who own a boat not that long ago said they would never sell are now considering selling and wanting to sell fast rather than risk what happened last season and what we went through with hurricane Matthew.
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post #6 of 12 Old 07-06-2018 Thread Starter
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Re: Buying A Sailboat During Hurricane Season?

A friend in Maryland sent me this, what do you's think?
Is that a lot for a 38' of that age?
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post #7 of 12 Old 07-07-2018
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Re: Buying A Sailboat During Hurricane Season?

Seems pricey. Plus it is listed by PopYachts. They aren't allowed on YachtWorld and are considered the bottom feeders of the brokerage world. Stay away.
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Re: Buying A Sailboat During Hurricane Season?

For what its worth, I almost always try to buy around mid October up until Christmas. I've lived in FL my whole life and have found this approach to work well as a buyer. I spend my "winters" here doing my refit work and the boat is ready to go for the spring. My last 4 boats I've bought this way under market price, after hurricane season and when the weather starts to let up a little temperature wise to tackle my punchlist.

Just to see if I'm nuts, I keep searching for as similar a boat as the one I bought the last few times once spring is winding up and the summer starts to compare numbers. I haven't been disappointed yet. Prices seem to peak just before Memorial Day and remain highest through Labor Day. Afterwards, sellers seem a little more negotiable or amenable to entertaining offers. I bought my previous Mako on my second time offering the same amount 5 weeks later. People seem to let things go they don't see themselves being able to use as much and boats are a very summer thing here even though for the rest of country, our winter is a piece of cake for them.

I'm sailboat shopping right now and documenting asking prices of everything I'm interested in to see where those prices sit after the summer "season" is winding down. My own hurricane plans aren't 100% solid at this time so as that irons out I'll start making some very lowball offers. If the seller wants to move the boat, he/she will do it at a price I'm comfortable with first, not the other way around. There is a lot of junk out there as is true with any style of boat in FL but no boat, EVER, is THE deal of a lifetime. There is always another boat a few weeks away worth waiting for. The key seems to be settling on a few models you'd be equally satisfied with. If you get picky, well, your taste might have an effect on your checkbook. Getting nugged in to one specific boat and size might make your buying experience more expensive. This is my first sailboat purchase but I've been buying and selling center consoles and walkarounds for 25 years here. We'll see. Best of luck to you in your search. See the thread I started on adding boats to my list. There have been lots of knowledgeable contributions by others there.
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Re: Buying A Sailboat During Hurricane Season?

I think YW may not want to deal with PopYachts since that is almost like Mary Kay or Amsoil. You know, "Hey, do you want to make money from home part time?" and the folks are almost entirely NOT full time professional brokers, which may change legal liabilities and other issues that YW has no need for. Not to mention, it probably po's their regular brokerage customers.

Bottom line, unless you are dealing with a very rare broker, you've got to assume every boat is not what is advertised, and you've got to put in the shoeleather getting out to the boat and laying hands on eyes on it, to see if it is worth anything. If a boat is 1000 miles away, that could mean four days on the road plus one or two more there. Or a fast $500-1000 on the airfare and hotel. That can add up fast, but the alternative is believing what's been "believed but not attested to" by whoever placed the ad.
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post #10 of 12 Old 07-09-2018
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Re: Buying A Sailboat During Hurricane Season?

Not much to add to what is already a good discussion here. Just heed the cautions expressed here and be patient... the right one at the right time and the right price will come along.
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