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post #1 of 13 Old 10-24-2016 Thread Starter
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New sailor looking for boat buying advice

Hello all.

My plan is to buy a bluewater cruising boat some time next year. For now, I'm doing research, planning, etc. My budget is probably going to be about $50,000.

I'm going to be in Fort Lauderdale in early Nov. Plan to do a bunch of research. One of the things I'm trying to get a handle on a brokers. Can I/should I try to work with a broker for something in the $50,000 range? Does anyone know a broker that I can trust? Recommendations, links to other threads, general advice are all encouraged.
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post #2 of 13 Old 10-24-2016
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Re: New sailor looking for boat buying advice

I trust this man totally. He was my buyer's agent. Fair, honest and reliable.

Charles Kotovic, Wisconsin, 262/369-5029, cellular 414/350-8505 or e-mail: [email protected]

"Any idiot can make a boat go; it takes a sailor to stop one." Spike Africa aboard the schooner Wanderer in Sausalito, Ca. 1964.
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post #3 of 13 Old 10-24-2016
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Re: New sailor looking for boat buying advice

The real question is: how are you going to use the boat? Secondly: how much "sweat equity" are you willing to put in? For that kind of money you can certainly find something and with a bit of work something quite nice. If it were me, I'd look for something around 30 ft and I'd reserve $20K for fixing things, adding things, possibly new sails. Depends a lot oh how many people will be on this boat; if it were JUST me, I'd probably go with smaller, if it's you and a partner and kids, obviously space helps. Good luck!
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post #4 of 13 Old 10-25-2016
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Re: New sailor looking for boat buying advice

My boat was just demolished in hurricane Matthew and I am looking for a new partner to invest in/buy an ocean going sailboat to cruise the Caribbean and the East Coast. My demolished boat was a Pearson 36-2 and was great for those purposes. Let me know if you want to discuss further.
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post #5 of 13 Old 10-25-2016
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Re: New sailor looking for boat buying advice

Sweat equity is such an apt term . Priceless
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post #6 of 13 Old 10-25-2016
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Re: New sailor looking for boat buying advice

What is your:

REFIT budget
ANNUAL operational budget?


Purchase price is an non-recurring expense and just part of the TCO.

Navigare necesse est, vivere non est necesse.
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post #7 of 13 Old 10-25-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: New sailor looking for boat buying advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pendragon35 View Post
The real question is: how are you going to use the boat? Secondly: how much "sweat equity" are you willing to put in? For that kind of money you can certainly find something and with a bit of work something quite nice. If it were me, I'd look for something around 30 ft and I'd reserve $20K for fixing things, adding things, possibly new sails. Depends a lot oh how many people will be on this boat; if it were JUST me, I'd probably go with smaller, if it's you and a partner and kids, obviously space helps. Good luck!
I intend to live aboard the boat with the eventual goal of ocean crossings.

I'm willing to put quite a bit of sweat into the boat. In fact, I'm looking forward to it.

I'm targeting something in the 35' - 45' range. From what I've seen, anything smaller than 36' seems like it might be too cramped to live aboard, and anything over 45' just seems too big to justify.

My total budget to seaworthiness is $50k. So if the boat will need $20k of work, it needs to cost about $30k.

It will just be me living on the boat. I would like to have space for visitors, though.
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post #8 of 13 Old 10-25-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: New sailor looking for boat buying advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by jackdaw View Post
What is your:

REFIT budget
ANNUAL operational budget?


Purchase price is an non-recurring expense and just part of the TCO.
As mentioned. $50k is my total budget to seaworthiness (i.e. purchase + refit).

Operational budget is unknowable, as I'll have to switch jobs to make the move onboard. That part is just one of those risks I'll have to deal with when the time comes.
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post #9 of 13 Old 10-26-2016
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Re: New sailor looking for boat buying advice

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Originally Posted by BillMoran View Post
Operational budget is unknowable, as I'll have to switch jobs to make the move onboard. That part is just one of those risks I'll have to deal with when the time comes.
You might want to research the costs to "park" your boat. Slip (vs. mooring) fees can be substantial, but may be well worth it for a live-aboard (access to electricity, water, convenience for going ashore). Depends on where you end up, which may include added costs for live-aboards (check other threads on SN).

Costs will also be dependent on boat length. In our area, a rule of thumb for in-season slip fees is $100/ft and >$50/ft for winter storage (obviously not your concern, but you'll have to figure out year round costs.)

Another boat size issue is the presumably additional maintenance costs when there are more parts and equipment on the 45 footer compared to the 35 footer. There will be more rigging and heavier (more expensive) hardware, like winches, on the bigger boat. The sails will be bigger ($$) and there is likely more plumbing (extra head?), and so forth.

So,your operational costs are "unknowable"? You need to do some research on this before you take the leap, IMHO.
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post #10 of 13 Old 10-26-2016
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I'm coming from the perspective of former full time live aboard. I think you are on the right track for the most part.

One thing I'm questioning a bit is your size requirements. 45' is a big boat to single hand and an expensive boat to maintain.

I owned two live aboard sailboats. The first was when I was single. She was 30'. She was plenty big enough for a single guy and a dog. Private V-Birth cabin forward, private head with a real door. Main salon had a couch, a table that could comfortably sit 4, a quarter birth and a small galley.

The boat was small enough that I took it everywhere. If I needed a trip to the beer store, I didn't walk, I took the boat to a dock near the beer store, same thing for groceries.

When my wife moved aboard with me, I upsized to a 35, which was plenty big enough for the two of us. Then my son was born and there were 3 of us. She was still plenty big enough.

The full time live aboard sailboats at my marina consisted of the following: An Alberg 30, my Fantasia 35, a hunter 38, a Saga 43 and a Gulfstar 43. All but the Alberg 30 were either couples or families with children.

I can't think of any reason you would want to go over 35'.

I agree with above, living at a slip is much easier and much safer than living at an anchor. Live aboard while working is different from cruising and comes with its own set of challenges.

Edit: with regards to your initial question about whether you should work with a buyers broker on a $30000 ish boat, I think that really depends on you.

If you are knowledgeable enough and are willing to put in the leg work yourself, you probably don't need one (I've never used one). Most people would recommend at least a survey, you'll probably need it for insurance purposes any way.

In terms of working with sellers brokers, for sure, I wouldn't rule out any boat, for sale by owner and for sale by broker are both good options IMO.
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Last edited by Arcb; 10-26-2016 at 12:39 PM.
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