Experienced sailors caution newcomers who haven’t yet gotten their sea legs to have one hand for themselves and one hand for the ship.
The advice to protect yourself first before taking any risks at sea is right on the money if you are thinking about buying a boat. Put on the equivalent of a consumer’s life jacket by brushing up on the basics.
which boats fit your price range and interests. Dollar-for-dollar, you
can get more boat if you buy used, but maintenance costs will be greater
and you may not have the security of a manufacturer’s warranty.
Dealer service is an important part of the new boat experience. Your relationship with the dealer will last for at least as long as your boat is under warranty. The ideal arrangement is to buy from a local company capable of working on both the boat and engine. Don’t buy out-of-town and expect your local dealer to be eager to perform warranty work. Unlike auto dealers, boat dealers are not obligated to provide warranty service for vessels they don’t sell.
When buying a used boat from a dealer or boat broker, be aware that the sales price generally includes a 10% commission. Be aware too that unless you specifically hire someone to serve as a buyer’s agent, dealers and brokers represent the seller’s interests.
• Find out how
long the dealer or broker has been in business and how long he’s
handled the make of boat you are buying. Longstanding dealers may have
more clout with the manufacturer, especially if they’ve earned high
marks on the manufacturer’s customer service surveys.