Buying a boat comes with lots of fun and benefits, no doubt! It just happens that many people find the boat buying process scary and complicated.
If you ask, a lot of people would like to own a boat. It’s however unfortunate that many of these people don’t even understand where to begin.
The process appears quite complex and overwhelming but if you find yourself in this position, you’re not really alone.
A recent study conducted by the industry organisation Grow Boating, revealed some mindboggling facts.
As much as 64% of first-time boat buyers do not have enough confidence that they know enough about boats to buy one just yet.
Another 70% of the people willing to buy a boat just don’t have people they trust who can advise them on how to go with the process. You’re probably wondering why things are like this, aren’t you?
Why Most People Have Problems Buying a Boat
You see, it all comes down to these three things;
- The overwhelming amount of information on their choices and options that boat buyers have to consider,
- A lack of definite and comprehensive resources in one place, to help buyers navigate the buying process, and
- The unavailability of boating experts they trust and can turn to, for valuable boating advice
But if that is just the problem, then what is the solution?
This article is meant to help aspiring boat owners get a better grasp and understanding of the boat buying process. This is what we shall be discussing in the remaining parts of this article.
3 Stages in Buying a Boat
There are three stages that will be involved in every boat purchase.
A clear understanding of these and undertaking the sub-steps in the right order will ensure you have enough confidence in your decision to move forward and to a subsequent purchase.
Not only that, but you’ll also be well-informed and on course for a much better boat ownership experience with less stress or frustration or wasted time!
Simply stated, these three stages are;
- the Deciding Stage
- Deciphering Stage, and
- the Buying Stage
Now, let’s examine what each of these stages consists of.
The Decision-Making Stage
This is exactly where everything starts!
Your journey to boat ownership starts with your desire for the boating lifestyle and then the decision to make that a reality for yourself and your family.
There are also three sub-steps involved in the decision-making phase.
The first step has to do with getting the ‘nautical know-how’ you’ll need to be successful on your boating journey, including the nautical know-how you’ll definitely need before buying a boat.
This stage is about moving from unaware of the risks, to fully aware of the potential challenges of year 1 of boat ownership.
Also in this stage, you gain the clarity of the right way forward and ‘getting underway’ with your plan on the best possible foundation.
The second step involves critical considerations of your needs and wants and then to chart your boating goals and objectives.
At the initial stage of making their boating decisions, a lot of people would usually view several boats to get an idea of what they like.
However, it turns out that many people can get easily overwhelmed by the many options and choices before them, which is mentioned above, as one of the main problems people face when thinking about buying a boat.
So this stage, without critical thinking and examination of your needs, wants and goals, it’s easy to lose sight of those things that really matter.
Getting it wrong here will most likely impact your on-water experience and your wallet.
This why about 39% of first-time boat owners wished there were more valuable resources at their disposal during the process of buying a boat.
The third step in the decision-making phase is the stage where you get underway with your options.
After carefully considering your goals and objectives, this stage is where you begin real progress on your boat buying journey.
You aren’t stuck any longer. At this stage, you’ll begin to explore the best options to suit your personal boating lifestyle.
The “Deciphering” Stage of the Boat Buying Process
This step is where you find your way through the boating industry noise and talk.
Like the decision-making process, there are also three sub-steps involved.
The first sub-step has to do with filling the gaps in your onboard experience.
Here, you begin by doing some viewings and actually getting onboard to experience what boating really entails.
Here you identify what additional on-water experience you may need to take before you jump in and buy a boat.
This could be a costly mistake, and something you can and should avoid.
Here comes the next sub-step which basically has to do with getting a full grasp and in-depth knowledge of the costs that will be associated with your boat purchase and on-going costs.
You don’t want to be surprised with unexpected costs and fees that can threaten your family’s financial goals.
This second sub-step requires that you scratch deeper than the surface to get a full picture of boating costs.
This step is often overlooked by new boaters.
Not by any fault of their own though! Research into new boat buyers has revealed this is what scares new boaters the most, the lack of upfront and honest information in a timely manner about what it really costs.
Being told at the last minute by a seller or dealer about the additional costs is what really has new boat buyers losing trust and confidence.
The third sub-step in the “deciphering” has to do with cutting through all of the information and overwhelm with a clear focus and understanding.
This will then help you in searching and finding the right options without distractions.
This process takes you from risk and uncertainty, and through focus, to safety and confidence. It will save you a great deal of time, energy, and money.
“Buying” Your Dream Boat
Everything leads to buying the right boat to suit your lifestyle.
The “buying” stage of this boat buying process is also composed of three sub-steps.
These are the process by which you’ll shortlist, negotiate, and then buy the boat of your choice.
This stage begins with the shortlist of boats for sale.
This has to be done effectively so as to identify that “one right option” that suits you best.
This will boil down to how good you are at comparing and evaluating your options with great focus and clarity.
You’ll also need to be on top of your skills to easily negotiate your way to real boat buying value.
You don’t want to overpay and you want to be sure you’re getting a great deal as well.
When all is clear, the only remaining thing will be to then settle the purchase price, take delivery and become the new owner of your very own boat.
Buying a boat should not be so much stress or uncertainty like it has become.
These steps above will no doubt make it easier for you to pull through and make the right decision and find a great deal in the process.
It will also ensure you have complete confidence in your boat ownership decision if you’re able to successfully follow every step outlined.
Talk to a Boating Expert You Can Trust
If you still don’t feel like you’re clear enough, it doesn’t hurt to speak with a professional you can trust.
Here at BASCO Boat Advisory Services, we are always available to help. At BASCO we have no boat dealerships, no boat agencies, no inventory and we don’t list boats for sale.
We provide trusted and independent advice that takes risk and uncertainty out of boat ownership.
Should you need help with how to shortlist, negotiating boats for sale, handling boat sale documentation, clarifying boat ownership costs, or any of the other boat buying processes, we’ll be glad to help.
In fact, all of the above is covered in our 90-day Boating Lifestyle Accelerator Program.
We are just a call or message away,
Contact us today at BASCO for more boat buying training and tips.