So you are thinking about investing in your first family boat. Boats are a great way to enjoy the great outdoors, along with close friends and family members, but before you purchase the first boat you come across, there are a few things you should consider.
Spending a lot of money on a brand new or second-hand family boat can be a daunting experience. There have been lots of horror stories, especially when it comes to maintaining a used boat. The initial cost of the boat is one thing, but the cost of running a boat is another “kettle of fish”. Understanding the maintenance cost before you spend your hard-earned money on a boat is vital. However, finding the ideal boat is not impossible.
1. Different Types of Boats
If you are new to boats, you might be surprised how many different types of boats there are. This makes the process of buying one even more daunting. You might assume that all boats are the same, at the end of the day they all float on water! However, there are lots of different types of boats readily available. Understanding what you are going to use the boat for will help you get an idea of the type of boat you need. For example, will you be using the boat for watersports, fishing, or for cruising?
- Deck Boat: This has an open decking area which is ideal for small groups. Most of these watercrafts have a V shape, and they are typically twenty to thirty two feet in length. If you and your family enjoy watersports and going for a swim, deck boats might be right up your alley.
- Centre Cabin Boat: The steering cockpit is located in the middle of the boat. If you and your family enjoy fishing, many secondhand and new centre cabin boats are equipped with fishing equipment, like rod holders and fish lockers.
- Cruiser: These power boats have bedrooms, so that people can sleep on the boat at nighttime. These are bigger than most centre cabin and deck boats. They are similar to yachts, but they are smaller in size. Many cruisers come with a fitted kitchen, a bathroom, and a dining area.
These are just three of the many types of boats available. You can determine the size of the boat by knowing how many people you want to fit on the watercraft. If you buy a boat that is too small, people on the boat won’t feel comfortable. But you must also think about what you are going to use the boat for. For example, if you enjoy offshore fishing, you should invest in a boat that is at least thirty feet in length.
2. Do I Need an Onboard or Outboard Engine?
Almost every boat on the market won’t have an engine installed, which can be a good or bad thing. If the boat you are thinking about buying doesn’t have an engine, you will be able to find an engine that suits your needs. There are lots of websites and traditional boat stores that sell a range of new and secondhand engines like Outboard Occasions.
An indoor engine is installed within the boat’s structure, so others cannot see it, and an outboard engine is located on the structure of the watercraft. You will find lots of different well known brands selling both these types of engines, such as these Yamaha outboards. Here are some of the differences between both engines:
- An outboard engine is more compact than most indoor engines, so you will have more room for occupants on the boat and some extra space for storage.
- Outboards tend to be lighter than most inboard engines, but they often make a much louder sound.
- Inboard engines are known to be fuel-efficient.
- Outboards are typically easier to maintain.
- Inboards are great for those who enjoy swimming. With an outboard engine, you won’t be able to use the back of the boat as a swim platform.
3. New or Used?
A brand spanking new boat can cost a pretty penny, however, there are plenty of second-hand boats for sale too. Most modern boats are made from fiberglass and aluminum, so you won’t have to worry about them rotting any time soon. You can save a fortune by investing in a second-hand boat, but you have to be careful. Buying second-hand boats can be tricky, especially if you don’t know what to look out for. You can’t be entirely sure what you are getting, and you won’t find out what is really wrong with the boat until after you have bought it. Most experts advise people who can afford it to invest in a new boat, but there are used boats for sale that will work just as well, but you might get unlucky.