It’s hard to imagine a better way to spend a summer day than cruising your favorite lake or the open sea in a boat of your own. But boat ownership comes with a good number of considerations that affect your wallet. Here are four things you should know if you’re looking to buy a boat.
Go Shopping in February or March
Boat shows generally take place in February, which means manufacturers are usually looking to sell off last year’s models at discounted prices, Lifehacker advises. If your boat purchase is still a couple of Februarys away, consider saving up for one with a CD or savings account, where your money will earn interest.
Budgeting for Annual Upkeep
Bentley Collins of Sabre Yachts tells The Washington Post that boat owners should budget 10 percent of a boat’s cost to cover a year of upkeep. If you bear in mind that you’ll probably end up spending at least this each year that you own your boat, you can plan to save accordingly.
The Safer the Boat, the Cheaper the Insurance
Some insurance underwriters will offer discounts if your boat has certain safety features, such as an engine kill switch or wireless auto tether, or if you take a class on safe boating, according to Fox Business. You can also save on boat insurance by bundling the policy with your car or home insurance.
Use a Boat’s I.D. to Research Its Past
If you’re thinking about buying a used boat, Yahoo Voices! points out that every boat has a Hull Identification Number, equivalent to a car’s Vehicle Identification Number. Sites such as BoatHistoryReport.com let you use the HIN to learn more about the boat owners and any accident reports.
Are you considering buying a new or used boat? What’s the biggest purchase you’ve ever made?