How to buy a Boat
By: BOB Tolan
How to Buy a Boat Tactics for ensuring a successful purchase. You've spotted the boat of your dreams at a boatshow, boat shop, fishing show(or was it in your neighbor's driveway?) and you're ready to buy. Before you plunk down a sizeable amount of change, there are a number of factors you should consider. First, you'll need to determine the type of boating you will be doing. This may seem an obvious starting point, but you'd be surprised how many buyers purchase a boat that doesn't fit their needs. The type of water you will be boating on and the climate are other important considerations. Small, sheltered bodies of water don't require a boat with as much freeboard and deadrise as those used on larger bodies of water where you will encounter bigger waves and rougher conditions. In a colder climate, the boating season is relatively short. To prolong it you may want a boat that offers more protection from the elements. In warmer climates an open boat with a Bimini top for shade may be the better choice.
Buy a New Boat or Used
(How to Buy a Boat|fishing|Boat Shop) Once you have determined the type of boat that suits your needs, the next decision is whether to buy it new or used. A used boat will cost less than a new one and often comes better equipped, but there may be added expense in repairs and upgrades. A used boat also has a proven performance and reliability track record that can be researched. On the other hand, a new boat comes with a full warranty. However, new boats depreciate the moment they leave the showroom floor. Buying new may be viewed as less of a risk to financial institutions, so terms, interest rate and down payment requirements may be better. If you decide to go with a new boat, boat shows are a prime shopping ground. Side-by-side comparisons permit you to evaluate several competing models at one location. You can also look for "Boat Show Specials" and negotiate deals between competing manufacturers. However, consideration should be given to the dealer you buy from. If he is located hundreds of miles away from where you live or if does not have a service shop, these "specials" may not be such a bargain. One good tip when shopping for new boats is to do it at the end of the model year. Typically toward the end of July dealers are trying to clear out old inventory. Another good tip is to search out the previous model year's leftovers once the new models have arrived. If you opt to purchase a used boat, your shopping can be done by browsing classified ads found in newspapers, magazines and on numerous websites, including boats.com. Many dealerships also offer used boats that have been taken as trade-ins. A dealership may offer a limited warranty on the used boat and has likely serviced it to some extent in readying it for resale. But because the dealer is a third party and has overhead, including sales commissions, the price is generally higher than what you would pay the owner directly.
Research First for boat shop
Once you have found a used boat that interests you, it is wise to call the U.S. Coast Guard at (800) 368-5647 and ask for information about manufacturers' recalls for that particular model. If a recall has been issued, ask the owner if the repair has been performed. If not, find out if the period of recall is still in effect. One important tip is to check the seller's proof of ownership. If the price is a "steal," the boat may very well be stolen. So check the necessary documents, and if they can't be produced, beware. Once you pass that hurdle, it's time to inspect the boat. A primary concern on a used power boat is its engine. A boat engine has to work much harder than its automotive counterpart, so pay special attention to its condition. If you are not mechanically astute, it is best to have a mechanical technician check the engine before you commit to a sale. This is especially critical if the boat has been used in salt water, which is much more corrosive than fresh water. But even a cursory check of the following items will provide some clue as to the engine's health. Visit a Boat Show Visit a local boat show. Take a look at all available options and board as many boats as you can. Discuss your wants and needs with dealers and experts at the boat show; they will answer any questions you may have about specific boat types and help you choose the one that will fit your needs and desires. For a list of boat and sportsshows in your area, poease visit our Boat Show Calendar Visit a Dealer If you're in the market for a boat, boat dealers are a great resource. Purchasing a boat from a dealer offers a number of advantages, including: • access to multiple finance sources and/or special manufacturer and dealer finance programs • year-round service departments • extended warranty programs • manufacturer and dealer incentive programs We also recommend buying from Marine Industry Certified dealers. Learn more about certified dealers in you area Rent a Boat Renting is a great way to compare boat types and models before deciding which boat to buy. Boat rentals come in a variety of forms, from hourly and daily rentals to weeks-long charters. Rental operations may not offer a wide range of boat models, but they can provide a range of boat types for you to try. Rental fleets tend toward basic models, nevertheless, they can give you and your family a sample of the boating fun waiting for you on the water, and they are a great way to get your feet wet. Learn more about boat renting optons that will best fit your needs
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