Buying New Boats or Used Boats

Overseas Radio Network – Buying New Boats or Used Boats

l52acatamaran guru is a member of the international yacht brokers association Topics in Overseas Radio Network Show 10, Segment 2:

  • Things to consider when buying a new boat
  • Buying a used boat

ESTELLE COCKCROFT: Welcome back. You are listening to “Yachts: The Perfect Escape Vehicle”. We are discussing today new boats, buying a used boat, building your own boat, or building through a shipyard. And Stephen just told us the pros and cons about building which are quite substantial. So, Gary, give us your opinion on new boats, production boats.

For a transcript of this podcast, click “read more” below. (Also, check out more info on buying new vs used yachts.)

GARY FRETZ: Yes, and I put a lot of this in writing in my e-book entitled “Insider Secrets To Boat Buying, 3 Easy Steps to Save Thousands of Dollars and Many Hours of Your Time”, which I will give away for free to you if you contact me on my website

Things to Consider When Buying a New Boat

So, in the process of identifying the exact boats for your needs, if you are looking at new boats keep in mind that there are currently over 120,000 pre-owned boats and yachts for sale in the world. And there is maybe 3,000 new yachts available. So the selection of new is substantially less than what’s available in the pre-owned market.

Now, among the pros of buying a new boat are the fact that you are getting the news design, the latest materials, and state of the art technology in the build process. You know, boats have gotten lighter, stronger, better than their ancestors. Other benefits of new yachts are much less maintenance in the first few years, you know, they just don’t breakdown. You can get warranty and that would include on your hull and all equipment on your boat.
Normally all warranties last about 5 years some last 10, the equipment is all warranty by each manufacturer. Other pros…financing is more readily available for new boats and at lower rates, another advantage to new boats is possibly tremendous tax deductions if you run it like a business. And we did a show on this previously if you are interested to know about that.

Stephen, what can you say about the new technology that we have compared to say 10-20 years ago in fiberglass boat building? You know, just kind of makes them last longer and, I mean, if you notice, they are like gel coats look new longer. And what do you say?

STEPHEN COCKCROFT: Material and technology have definitely moved ahead. The older boats 20 years ago, 30 years ago…we were cruising Madagascar and in the early ‘90s, we were cruising with some boats that were built in Australia 20 years before that. And, I guess, in those days, people just didn’t know how strong fiberglass or GOP was and how long it would last. So the older boats we definitely were really strongly built, they were in fact over built, by my opinion.

You know, they would bulkheads, they would have stringers, they would be completely basically they followed on from the wooden boat type of construction method. So the older boats are very probably thicker than they need to be and probably a lot heavier than they need to be. And not necessarily stronger because engineering in these boat have improved to where they have matrix of trays and bulkhead configurations that made the extremely stiff. And just as strong as a very thick heavy boat. So new boats definitely have better performance because weight is always a factor in a boat’s performance.
GARY: That sounds good. Some other benefits to buying a new boat is that they are highly reliable and this gives you better peace of mind. So, you know, if you are in a storm in the middle of the ocean and you are little concerned about, you know, this wind that is gusting to 50 miles an hour and whether your mast is going to stay up, if you have a new boat chances are there is not going to be any problems.

Boat Life Cycle is Similar to That of Cars

You know, what I have noticed over the years…and I have been brokering yachts for 23 years now…is that boats are similar to cars. And it seems like around the sixth or seventh year of life, they just start falling apart and it is not necessarily the hull, it’s just all of the components, you know, the air conditioning seems to have a useful life of 5 to 7 years and then the compressor starts to going. You have to replace all of them. Then the refrigeration is very similar and the engines the modern diesel have a life time of I guess 7,000 hours before you have to think about rebuilding or replacing.

With a new boat, you don’t have to deal with all that. You have peace of mind. Another benefit on a new boat is you choose the options and upgrades that you prefer so you get exactly what you want, you know. When you buy used boat, you’re really taking the equipment list that was ordered by the previous owner and so you probably getting some things that you don’t need or want. Did you have something?

STEPHEN: I just want to point out that, you know, although, you know, you mentioned that boats are like cars and after a couple years or 7 years they start to, you know, needing attention. The one thing you need to know is that boats are forever in terms of refurbishment. A car when it has 150,000 miles, it is absolutely done. There is no way you can refurbish it. You got to scrap it.

Boats, on the other hand, are refurbishable forever, you know. If the mast develops cracks or if there’s any structural issues, you can replace it. You can replace the engine. You can replace the sails. You can refurbish the interior. So once you own a boat, you do have, you can technically keep, that boat for 30 years and refurbish it as you go along. So it is always nice to start with a platform that you chose to your speck and evolve from there.

Buying a Used Boat

GARY: And that brings something up that there are some 30-year-old boats out there that are like new now. They are not common, but you do run into these owners that spend a lot of time and money maintaining their boats. And I have seen some magnificent, like Erwin 52s, you know. They are like floating condos…great liveaboards.

I have seen some smaller boats. Coronado 35s have been called the biggest liveaboard for its length overall known to man. And, you know, you can buy those from between $20,000 and $50,000, ready to go. I am talking about with solar panels, wind generators, sometimes with rebuilt engine. And they don’t look very sleek, but they are good boat.

The last benefit to having a new yacht is that they are more easily insured. You don’t generally need a survey like you do the older boat. And when you are getting a survey for insurance purposes on an old boat, if there are defects, the insurance company is going to make you fix them before buying coverage. So you need to be aware of that because you may have to spend some money.

The cons to new boats, you know, fewer choices, quicker depreciation, and they cost more initially. So you kind of get less bang for your buck. Well, it looks like we are running out of time in this segment we are going to take a short break and we will be right back, you are listening to “Yachts: The Perfect Escape Vehicle” only on the Overseas Radio Network. And this is Gary Fretz.


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