Everything You Need to Check Off Your List before Buying a Boat

Tuesday, January 19, 2016, 6:00 PM | Leave Comment

You’ve made the decision to purchase your first boat, but beyond that, you may not know what to do, or what to expect. A boat purchase is unlike that of a car, in that your boat will not be used for just transportation.

As you begin the purchasing process, you’ll need to consider whether you are making the investment as an opportunity to get away with your family and friends, to establish a sense of camaraderie with other boaters, or to participate in high-performance boating events.

But, in any case, you’ll also need to check a few things off of your financial planning list to make sure you make the right purchase, and are prepared to hand over the check when it comes time to make it final.

Before you head out to the lot with checkbook in hand, consider these important aspects of purchasing your first boat.

Everything You Need to Check Off Your List Before Buying a Boat

  • Decide on a Type

    Like vehicles, there are many different makes and models of boats. So the first decision you need to make is on what type of boat you plan to purchase, which is determined by how you’ll use the boat.

    When it comes down to it, there are three main boating activities: fishing, cruising, and watersports.

    Some boats can be used for two or even three of the activities, but most are designed with a primary purpose in mind.

    Cruising boats are intended for entertaining guests while still delivering high quality performance, such as a deck boat, pontoon boat, or express cruiser.

    Fishing boats maximize deck space needed for fishing and include bass boats, center consoles, Jon boats, and others.

    Watersports boats are designed for activities such as waterskiing and wakeboarding, and include options such as a wakeboard boat or jet boat.

    Think about how you plan to use your boat and make your selection based on intended purpose.

  • Consider New or Used

    Just like with buying a vehicle, you have options for buying new and used boats. This consideration is one you need to make up front, as there are several variables involved.

    There are lots of used boats available today at lower prices than you would pay for the same boat new. And with fiberglass and aluminum boats, you don’t have to worry about rot even with a used boat.

    Keep in mind that while buying used can save money, it also brings in a number of other considerations. Consider what model you’d like and determine if it makes more sense to buy new or used.

  • Know What Is Included

    Another thing you’ll want to keep in mind is that some purchases include different elements than others. What is included in the sale will depend on the type of boat you purchase, the deal you make, and whether you are purchasing new or used.

    Many new boats offer package deals that will come with extras that a used purchase might not have.

  • Determine a Price

    Once you’ve decided on the boat, you need to work on determining a price. It’s easy to get caught up in the emotions of a purchase once you’ve found the boat that you want, but you really need to focus on negotiating a price that you’re comfortable with.

  • Check for Fraud

    Before you complete a purchase, you also need to check for any fraudulent activity on the boat. Unfortunately, there are many online scams today, so be sure to avoid unusual requests when making a purchase, such as a request for your bank information or PIN, or asking for a check first.

  • Ensure Water Safety

    A final consideration you’ll want to make prior to purchasing and using a new boat, is appropriate water safety measures.

    Taking swimming lessons in New York City or your local area, and following all water safety instructions is important to ensure you, your family, and your friends stay safe when boating and get the most out of this purchase.

Purchasing a boat is a big investment. Take the time to check these considerations off your list prior to making your purchase. Get the boat you want, and secure a good deal by making sure you are ready in all areas.

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