DUE DILIGENCE MAKES BUYING YOUR NEXT RIDE A BETTER EXPERIENCE.
But while the boat-buying process can undoubtedly bring joy and excitement, it can also be frustrating if you purchase the wrong boat. So, how do you decide? Start by asking yourself some hard questions about how you will realistically use the boat.
Do you fish with your own professional crew, or do you run the boat yourself ? Will you undertake extensive traveling on the boat and therefore need multiple staterooms with lots of bunks for crew and guests, or will you fish close to home with fewer people aboard? These questions relate not only to the size of the boat you’ll need, but also the layout.
If you do travel with a large crew, you will almost certainly need a convertible that can accommodate all of your personnel. If it’s just you and your spouse with a guest or two, perhaps an express boat makes more sense. Express designs make it much easier to fish shorthanded, as the captain sits only a few steps from the cockpit and can assist with those chores.
You also must decide whether to buy new or used. Nothing beats a new boat, especially if you can afford to go custom and create the exact boat you’ve always wanted. But if you opt for a new production sportfisherman, you can usually take delivery much sooner than you would if you ordered a custom boat yet to be built.
Of course, you can also choose a previously owned vessel and often get a lot more boat for the money, but buying used boats requires careful examination of the particular vessel, for obvious reasons. Thorough surveys of the hull, mechanical and electrical systems, and the engines are a must, so you know precisely what you’re buying. A bargain isn’t always a bargain in the end.
No matter what boat you’re considering, enlist the aid of a knowledgeable broker, who can help simplify the buying process.
“When you are attending a boat show and looking for a sportfish boat, the first priority should be to find a broker/ salesperson that actually knows what they are talking about,” says Tim Derrico, director of sales for HMY Yacht Sales in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.
“Has the salesperson ever fished much?” Derrico adds. “What is his or her general knowledge of fishing boats?
The sights and sounds of a show can overwhelm the senses.