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Discussion Starter #1
I'm casually looking to upgrade my O'Day 22 to something like an O'Day 28 centerboard model. (Or similar, length under 30', draft less than about 3'6".)

I'm near Detroit. I have found three of the O-28 cb's that look decent or better (in their pictures-ha!), all on the East coast.

Now is a much more convenient time for me to buy than the spring. I have time to shop now & most of the winter. Spring is my busy season, so I'd be taking off from work to shop, which adds up quickly. If I wait, am I likely to have a wider, and possibly closer, selection of vessels than is available now?

(I like my boat well, which is limited to about a 30' boat. Our favorite hidey hole has thin water, and is a requirement of the admiral.)

Thanks!

Chuck
 

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I think you would get a better deal on a boat in the fall than the spring. In the fall folks are looking forward to some months of storage and insurance expenditures w/o the pleasure of sailing the boat.
That was one of the points I used to get my boat's price reduced by more than 30% in August.
 

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You need to consider the cost of transportation and winter storage in your calculations. Those costs might be offset by a late fall sale price over a spring premium. The other factor is having your new boat ready the moment the saying opens back up in the spring. Is your 22 trailerable so you won't get stuck paying storage for two boats?
 

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BEst prices are when folks have to pay for the marina/storage. So shortly before haul-out in fall but mostly in early spring before the slip/mooring has to be paid...
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Yes, the little one is on a trailer, and will be stored in my driveway for sale in the spring.

Transportation is certainly a BIG factor, winter storage a bit less. Cost is always an issue, but my work is very seasonal and I tend to to pay retail for boat services.

I'm dumb enough to be one of those marine contractors. I build custom canvas. Right now, by choice, I have a pretty flexible work schedule. In the spring, I'll probably work for about 100 days straight. It's my shop, so.... gotta be here to make the hay during hay season. I do better then if I can take a coupe hours and sail around. Driving around to look at even more boats sounds unappealing, and will certainly be expensive in lost work hours.

The selection of boats I'm interested in seems meager now. I'm just wondering if there might be more choices in the spring. (Although, it really sounds like I'm talking myself into not waiting.) The cost now/then is a smaller issue- it's probably cheaper for me to buy now & pay to store than to take time from work later.
 

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Each boat I have bought was in the fall. owners used the boat all summer and then wanted out to buy a new bigger boat in the spring and save on the storage or moorage fee when they would not be using the boat. I have found better deals buying in the fall. I would say if you have the time now then look now. for some it can take 6 to 9 month to find the right boat. little different for me being on the left coast but the last boat came from the N Carolina and we found it in December and look at it in January (on the coldest day of the year) so we bought it at a good price and were able to bring it here and start using it in February. So if you buy now you will have all winter to get the canvas work done. I don't think you Admiral is not going want to be seen on a boat with old canvas work
 

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S2 7.9 Bear Lake, UT
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The selection of boats I'm interested in seems meager now. I'm just wondering if there might be more choices in the spring. (Although, it really sounds like I'm talking myself into not waiting.) The cost now/then is a smaller issue- it's probably cheaper for me to buy now & pay to store than to take time from work later.
It also sounds like you have a very specific need in boats, less than 30 feet, drawing less than 3.5.' If you weren't so limited it might make more sense to wait for spring but, it would be even worse searching for the right boat in spring with a limited boats even being and option, and then not being able to find anything while searching when you should be working.

It would not hurt now to go shopping to see if you can find the right boat now while you are slow.
 

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I think the spirit of the question is about seasonal inventory, not necessarily the impact on cost - but correct me if I'm wrong. My source is simply an unhealthy relationship with Yachtworld for the last 12 or so years (and specifically for the New England area at that). Anecdotally, I've seen a better inventory in the Fall and I attribute that to all the reasons posted above (along with the commentary on pricing). We bought in the Fall and were happy to do so. Got a few sails in and were able to identify/address work needed over that first Winter. Nothing like the enthusiasm of a new boat owner to fuel a work ethic.

This Spring could be different though, and I'm curious to see the outcome. Boats were selling as fast as paper towels up here this Summer. Folks were desperate to escape the house, and with no where to really go - RV's and boats were en vogue. Along with all the exercise equipment and adopted puppies, I'm wondering what the longer term appetite for boats will be if/when things return to normal. If I had to guess, its' that shortly after things settle down the inventory at shelters and boat yards will both be going up and people will be giving away treadmills. Timing is the question I guess. Will it be Spring, next Fall, 2 years from now? Who knows. The other wild card is the election and it's impact on the economy/disposable incomes in 2021. Lots to ponder, little in our control.

Just my $0.02, but I'd focus on finding the right boat and worry about seasonal timing later.
 
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