Do You Buy a New Boat or a Used Boat? Should you invest in a brand new boat? Or, is a pre-owned vessel good for you? Be it a personal watercraft for your adventures or a motor yacht for your luxury cruise, everyone comes across this question. Don’t worry; you are not alone in this. Every first-time boat buyer faces this dilemma – the age old debate of whether to buy a new or a used boat.
If it was a simple yes or no to either, it would have been much easier. The trouble is that there is no single answer to this question. Before you buy a boat, it is important to determine what you want and what fits your budget.
Here is a look at the advantages of new and used boats to help you make a decision.
Why Buy a New Boat
The first reason is simple – because you would love to have a new boat! A boat is a proud possession for most owners, and they want it to be brand new. From the important points such as hull construction to the aesthetic details such as interior colour palette, a new boat means you can have your choice.
New Vessel, Less Worries
With a new vessel, you need not worry about what it went through in the past, whether there is a glitch that you overlook, or how much maintenance it would really need in the future. It is dream transformed into reality – minus any worry.
Secondly, there is manufacturer’s warranty available for every part, be it the body or the engine. Even if there is a problem somewhere, any repair or replacement is covered. Keep in mind, these warranties are usually served by the dealer who sold you the boat; so, it is best to buy from someplace close by.
Often, warranty is what draws many buyers to choose in favour of new boats. The vessel may have a faulty part or may break down due to some reason; but the warranty makes it possible to avoid any associated problems, and ensures your peace of mind.
New Boat, Your Choice
Thirdly, for an owner, a new boat is similar to any new possession. When you opt for this, you can dictate every little detail that matters. Size, configuration, features, gear, accessories, colours, and all other things are fitted as per your tastes and preferences. No need to stick to someone else’s choice.
You can make a new boat truly your own with the way you decide to deck it up with the latest technology and gadgets. You can determine even the smallest detail, what colour the rug will be in your cuddy cabin or what artwork will look good on your cruiser.
Why Buy a Used Boat
Cost is often the chief reason people opt for this. It is easy to understand it once you take a look at the difference. A 5 year pre-owned boat may be available at a greatly reduced price than a new one with the same size, capacity, and construction. Price is often what lures first-time buyers to consider a used boat.
Good For Recreational Boating
When you are on the lookout for a watercraft that will do well on the waters but are concerned about the budget, a used one may be the right option for you. Again, if you are starting out on recreational boating, a used vessel may be a good idea too.
Rate of Depreciation
Secondly, the major part of depreciation is over for most used boats. The value of a new boat depreciates greatly in the first couple of years. After this, the rate of depreciation stays around 3-4% through the next 10 years. Of course, this depends on the make, model, and market conditions; but this is what happens in most cases.
If you plan to upgrade in the near future, it may be difficult to get the value on a new boat. But this isn’t the case for old boats. Once they have crossed the first year, the depreciation rate doesn’t escalate much; you can recover much of the investment if you decide to sell.
Pre-Owned Boat Passed the Test of Time
Thirdly, a pre-owned boat has been out on the waters and seen good and bad days. It may not be fitted with the latest fancy equipment but it has a reliable setup that can be of use to you. The first kinks have been identified and handled and now you can make use of the time-tested gear that the boat comes with.
It is also a good thing to know that you are not the one responsible for the first scratch or dent on the boat. If comfort and budget are your foremost concerns, a used boat is the right choice for you.
Once you have made a decision, exercise caution when you buy your first boat.
If you decide to buy a new boat, check out your options. Talk to the dealer; discuss it with your family and friends, especially those who own vessels; check the Internet for further resources; conduct a thorough research about the make and model you wish to buy. Also, compare costs to make sure you get the best deal.
Remember, the price isn’t the only cost when you decide to buy a new boat. You need to fit it up with the equipment and accessories, from the necessities to the fancies. Also, consider insurance, storage, and maintenance costs to calculate the budget.
Consult a Marine Surveyor
If you decide to buy a used boat, you need to go ahead and examine the choices available in the market. Get a marine surveyor to assess the boat for damage; get it out on the waters for a test ride; talk to the seller about its past and the reason it is on sale. Remember, it doesn’t come with warranties; so, you need to be extra careful.
Again, the price of the pre-owned boat isn’t the only cost to consider. Often, these may need to be rigged and refitted to make them suitable for a voyage. Along with this, old boats often need more maintenance than their new counterparts.
At the end, it is your preference that will determine whether to buy a new or a used boat.