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Discussion Starter #1
Okay, so, I have passed up three boats that I got really excited about. Walked away from a nice Albin that got snapped up right away (someone did well). But now I've got a clearer vision of what to look for, what appeals to me, and I browse constantly on the web for sailboats in general to get a sense of what is worth it. And I have a more refined image of what appeals to me in looks, hull design, etc.

I'm glad I did this, if for no other reason than my demeanor won't seem so gullible to the seller. But seriously, I thinks its a good experience to keep an eye out and keep looking even when you can't buy if you are considering your first boat. And even more importantly, I realize that to have a great big chunk of cash in one's pocket would be essential to that real good deal, because they disappear real quick.

I also notice the nature of the listings changes, on Craig's list, it seems that very suddenly the dealers are putting ads up and the parts sellers are real active. The prices seem to inflate from time to time too. I wonder if this part of a regular cycle or is the market changing.
 

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...I realize that to have a great big chunk of cash in one's pocket would be essential to that real good deal, because they disappear real quick...

There are several undeniable factors affecting the U.S. market:

1. Sailing is a dying sport/hobby/recreational activity. Fewer and fewer people want to own a keelboat. This decreases demand.

2. A recession and stagnant economy that have decimated the middle class. This decreases new owner demand and stops some from moving up in boat size;

3. An overabundance of well-built, dual purpose sailboats from the 70s and 80s exists, which many consider to be superior to the current crop of more specialized offerings.

4. Many sellers who financed their boats owe more than the boats are worth and cannot/will not come to the table with money.

5. Some sellers are unwilling to accept reality and have been informed that it takes years to sell a boat, so they will wait years thinking it is just a matter of time before they get their over-inflated, unrealistic price.

6. Saavy, well-informed, experienced buyers know it is a buyers' market, know they are in control of the transaction, and are not about to believe any kind of talk about boats being snapped up quickly - sounds like broker B.S. There are an abundance of great deals out there for a buyer with cash and you need not be in any hurry - values are still dropping.

Take a stroll through any marina in the area and you will see the new reality of sailing and boat ownership. Prices are plunging and supply grossly exceeds demand. Recreational boats have always been depreciating assets; some fail to appreciate how fast they are depreciating now.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
First of all the last place I want to look for a boat is with a broker, so rest assured I am not one.

I am not saavy to the market, except what I can access locally (the web), and what my experiences have been directly as a result. All the buys that look like good buys have gone very fast. I don't have any local marinas as I live in New Mexico. I did figure it would be a buyers market, but the speed that good buys go at in a desert are contrary to what may be normally perceived (as far as I can tell). I do appreciate the info and perspective you have given me to be sure in spite of the fact that it was rudely given. So, thanks, for what its probably worth to you.
 
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