SailNet Community banner

1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
first sailed january 2008
Joined
·
1,409 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I was in Orange County yesterday. I like California I always have. I know it's not the same place I first fell in love with, and it's quite the fashion for those who don't live there to wish it would fall into the ocean, but that's not the point. The point is I am researching plans for next year. I was wondering if anyone can give me some advice on buying a mooring or slip. With the intention of living aboard.

I started my research in Orange County. Newport Beach. They have 450 moorings owned by the city but leased for life to individuals. Those individuals can them sell them to others. Then you have to get a liveaboard permit. I'm not sure how hard that is. But think how good it could be to own your own boat and slip in Newport Beach! It looks like they go for about $25k. It seems expensive at first, but if you were to liveaboard at a marina it will cost 600-800 anyways so the mooring would pay for itself after a while.

Or Santa Barbara does something similar with slips. It's hard to get a slip but you can own the lease and sell a boat with it. Santa Barbara has liveaboard permits, and they have a limit. But what I could find out was they have only given out about half available. I'm thinking it is because the slips are so expensive. I saw a Catalina 30 with slip for $50,000.

Does anyone have any firsthand knowledge of how this could work out in real life? I would want to be damn sure I had a liveaboard permit or could get one.

Is this a dream that could be made reality or is the red tape involved too hard.

I'm open to other suggestions as well. San Diego has a cheap mooring field that you rent....
 

·
Large Member
Joined
·
299 Posts
Moorings in Newport use to sell for about $1000/ft two or so years ago. Prices have dropped to less than $500/ft now. That's been due to a change in the way you can transfer a mooring. The city put a time limit,10 years or three transfers within ten years, at which time the only way to transfer the mooring would be to return it to the city and they would issue to someone. No more private transfers. I believe there are 7 or so years left till that takes.

There are also monthly maintenance fees and a bi-yearly inspection needed. For a 40' mooring that runs about $200/mo. I believe (up from about $50 when they changed the law for above).

There are live a board permits and they are issued depending on the location and number of live a boards in the mooring field. They do charge a fee and require you to keep logs of tank pump outs. I'm guessing that's standard.

For more (accurate?) info, call the Newport Harbor Patrol. They are really helpful despite being run by the OC Sheriffs.

Look on Craigslist or The Log newspaper for ads.
 

·
first sailed january 2008
Joined
·
1,409 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
500 a ft. So you don't say "I've got a 30 foot boat". You buy the lease to a 45 foot mooring. So they are around $25,000?

How risky is it? Say you bought one. Can the harbor take it back because thy don't like you and you are left with nothing?

Do you think it is hard to get the liveaboard permit? I have to call harbor resources to get that info, but a lot of time it's better to get the lowdown from locals like yourself. Do you see any liveaboards out there? I would be the low key, quiet type with a nice boat I actively sail weekly. Not just a floating home.

It just sounds like it could be so great. Living in Newport Beach, taking trips to baja and Catalina. Up to Santa Barbara. Taking my dinghy out to the avenues to surf or bodyboarding the wedge. After the initial payment for the boat and mooring. Loving for the couple hundred a month would be a great life.

I cruised a bit last summer. Sometimes I stayed in a marina and sometimes I anchored. But when I got a mooring ball in friday harbor,
That was the way to live. It's far enough away that your neighbors aren't right next to you. A nice level of privacy. But without the worry about leaving it at anchor while you go to shore if its windy.
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
713 Posts
where do you think you are going to park a car and/or store your dinghy while on land? I think that could get VERY expensive, very fast in newport beach.

Also, the habor department people are just total dicks I'd look anywhere BUT newport/dana point (same sherrif dept)
 

·
Large Member
Joined
·
299 Posts
500 a ft. So you don't say "I've got a 30 foot boat". You buy the lease to a 45 foot mooring. So they are around $25,000?
Moorings, I believe, are 35, 40, 45, 50, 60 feet and up. I saw a 40' mooring last summer sell for $10k.

Currently they are listed for sale from $15 - $25k depending on the location. ($500/ft for a 40' mooring would be $20k right).

I'm sure all the prices are negotiable. Some have boats on them, some don't. Every situation is different. There are moorings that people have owned for 40+ years and have just kept them in the family. So for "losing" a mooring, unless your boats is a hazard or you have frequent loud parties on it, I don't think you are in danger of losing it. BTW, there are PLENTY of moorings with POS's hanging on them. Although a shame, not illegal to neglect maintenance in Newport. Having said that, they are owned by the City, so prices can rise or things can change.

For a liveabord permit: I don't believe it is hard as long as the location is not too crowed or too close to homes. For instance my can is on the north side of Balboa Island. There are only two cans to a row and they are comparitively close to homes. I don't think that there are liveaboards near me. However a few hundred feet up the channel, it widens to three cans per row and is next to a small marina, I believe there are liveaboards there.

Newport has several mooring fields. Field H and J are large fields with 10 or 12 per row and they have a lot of liveaboards there. It is also where many marine companies keep their work boats. Mooring fields B. D and G are smaller 2-3 per row fields and closer to homes, not many liveaboards. Mooring field A is a large field and is closer to the harbor entrance and has more liveaboards. Not as desirable an area though (for me at least).

The harbor really does have something for everyone. If I were to liveaboard, I would look at H field. Currently, I've seen moorings for sale in the $15 -$18k range. Not too bad considering a 40' slip would run you about $1100/mo. H field is next to the American Legion, which I'm a member of, and they have a yacht club you can join if you are a member of the Legion. There is a pump out station there as well as a courtesy dock. But that's me, you might have other needs.

Check out Google Earth, you can get a pretty good feel for the area that way.
 

·
Large Member
Joined
·
299 Posts
where do you think you are going to park a car and/or store your dinghy while on land? I think that could get VERY expensive, very fast in newport beach.

Also, the habor department people are just total dicks I'd look anywhere BUT newport/dana point (same sherrif dept)
BTW, this is a typical response from someone who really doesn't know much about the city.

Newport just expanded/renovated all of it's public docks and added a new one. Dingy tie ups are allowed for up to 24 hours at all of them, and I believe, there is a 72 hour limit on a couple of them. Some are used more than others so you may have to do an initial hunt for a regular dock to use, but it shouldn't be too hard. The last few times I've tied up overnight, I was the only boat there. It is November though.

Parking in Newport isn't bad either, if you're in the know. If you are at H field, you would be parking on the peninsula. A yearly pass for MOST meters in the city is $100. You wouldn't want to move your car on a busy weekend though. For other fields, parking would be free, you just need to move for the street sweeper.

As for the Harbor Patrol, they are Sheriffs. Their job is to be a dick to people, not a job I would like. Having said that, I've had mostly good experience with the Harbor Patrol office people. Never had to deal with the guys on the boats but I always wave as I pass them and they do the same.

I've heard stories about the harbor patrol but it's always about a "friend's brother from Irvine" who had the issues with them.

Just sayin'. YMMV.
 

·
Large Member
Joined
·
299 Posts
Oh, one more thing.

You can rent a mooring from the city on a daily or weekly basis. This time a year it's $16/day I think. It goes up to $26/day during the busy months. This is cruising season so a lot of moorings are empty. You could rent at a couple of different areas to see which is best. I'm guessing you could liveaboard while doing so as long as you don't draw attention to yourself and move every couple of weeks to a new mooring.

Just an idea.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,346 Posts
Don't forget moorings in Catalina . There is a waiting list for a leased one . But you can buy one out right in Avalon . If I were you I'd just get out here, get the boat you want rent for a while then decide .
 

·
Water Lover
Joined
·
773 Posts
If the original poster has any sort of military connections there might be a few more options. For example, military can rent moorings in southern San Diego bay. And someone whose parent was military could be eligible to join the American Legion as a "son of the American Legion".
 

·
Senior Member
Joined
·
713 Posts
BTW, this is a typical response from someone who really doesn't know much about the city.

Newport just expanded/renovated all of it's public docks and added a new one. Dingy tie ups are allowed for up to 24 hours at all of them, and I believe, there is a 72 hour limit on a couple of them. Some are used more than others so you may have to do an initial hunt for a regular dock to use, but it shouldn't be too hard. The last few times I've tied up overnight, I was the only boat there. It is November though.

Parking in Newport isn't bad either, if you're in the know. If you are at H field, you would be parking on the peninsula. A yearly pass for MOST meters in the city is $100. You wouldn't want to move your car on a busy weekend though. For other fields, parking would be free, you just need to move for the street sweeper.

As for the Harbor Patrol, they are Sheriffs. Their job is to be a dick to people, not a job I would like. Having said that, I've had mostly good experience with the Harbor Patrol office people. Never had to deal with the guys on the boats but I always wave as I pass them and they do the same.

I've heard stories about the harbor patrol but it's always about a "friend's brother from Irvine" who had the issues with them.

Just sayin'. YMMV.
I lived in LA and worked marina's in LA and at a yacht club in Newport Beach. I've had LOTS of experiece with several harbor departments on both sides of the desk. My experience with them was not 'some guys brother' it was them being complete assholes to me for no reason.

going from avalon to LA my transmission went out. so we diverted to newport. They required us to show up, in person, every day by noon, to pay for a day's mooring. You could not pay for two days, just one. So instead of working on the transmission I'd have to plan my entire day around them. And I'm not even really complaining about that, but there was definitely a nasty attitude from everyone about anything from that office. "where's the restroom" was met with a scowl and eyeroll.

I've interacted with plenty of people in SoCal sherrif's and otherwise. You're right though that in Newport beach, the sherrif's think it's their job to be a dick, and they do their job well.

The last day was coming up and there was a red flag warning, and they flat out told me if I was not off the ball that my boat would be impounded. Again, they were just being dicks. I hadn't tried to bend rules or anything they are just nasty. For sure don't ask them about the weather or 70 MPH winds in the forecast or they might think you are stealing ($5) from them!

I can't speak to the THe new docks but when I was there a few years ago the county docks and facilities were disgusting. It's nice that tthey may have finally fixed them 10 years too late though. And I guarantee you you're not going to long term park a car there or a dinghy every day while you go to work. So those are real issues that the OP will have to suss out BEFORE spending 10k on a mooring.

Most reputations are earned, Newport Beach has a reputation that no other town on the coast with the possible exception of Dana Point have. And gee, what do they have that's different? OCSD.
In 08 (about when I was there) you couldn't even file a complaint. They said "yep we're just that good so we don't get no complaints" O.C. Sheriff's Department gets few complaints from the public - Los Angeles Times

In 09 they made the 'amazing' step of having complaint forms in the stations and complaints went up 42% It was even noted that OCSD was nasty to other agencies. They had an elitist bad culture there.Turns out, maybe they were'nt quite as good as they thought they were.

Complaints against sheriff's employees up 42 percent: OC Watchdog Blog: Orange County Register

It's POSSIBLE they have fixed all their problems, but it's gonna take a few more years before they earn a good reputation because their current one is well deserved.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,059 Posts
And you are right, Dana's even worse, however it's the only harbor I know where if you forget to lock something, it's still there when you come back.
 

·
Large Member
Joined
·
299 Posts
I've had LOTS of experiece with several harbor departments on both sides of the desk.


I've interacted with plenty of people in SoCal sherrif's and otherwise.


Most reputations are earned,


It's POSSIBLE they have fixed all their problems, but it's gonna take a few more years before they earn a good reputation because their current one is well deserved.
I really don't want to get into an argument over how great or over-authoritarian Newport's harbor patrol is. I've had limited experience with them as I said above, but...

Read your posts above guy. Maybe there is something else that's causing them to treat you and I differently.

Especially that part about reputation, maybe they saw you coming.
 

·
first sailed january 2008
Joined
·
1,409 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
I've called the sheriff on the phone twice and they were super friendly. I asked about the moorings and told them what I wanted to do, and they gave good information and were friendly. They didn't try to dissuade me from buying a mooring. He even told me about how they recently built a new dinghy dock so now they have seven or something. When I asked the second call it was a woman and I asked how long I could rent a mooring for and how much and she was friendly too, and said they are $16 a day and I could rent one as long as I liked.

The only thing they cautioned me about was there are changes to the way moorings can be sold.

I'm not saying they were nice or not based on my brief encounter over the phone, you know, but it wasn't like calling a marina and you have to tippy toe around the liveaboard issue. I called a couple marinas too and Ventura was the friendly one, where redondo, and places in san diego sounded a little more standoffish.

I don't see why OCSD would hassle sailboats in the harbor anyways. I'm not saying their reputation if they have one is unfounded, just that they sounded nic to me, and Newport Beach is a big time sailboat center, why would they discourage sailboats?
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Top