In part 2 of this 4-part blog series, ‘How to buy a boat’, we’ll look at question 2 of the 4 key questions you need to ask before you buy a boat.

Before we dig right in to that question, let’s first do a quick re-cap on question 1, which was, ‘What do you want to use your boat for?’

It’s important to spend some time thinking about all the ways you want to use a boat, but then focusing by putting those uses and ideas into an order of priority.

The reason this is important is two-fold.  Firstly, it’s natural and normal to want to use your boat for a wide range of things, fishing, family, sailing, business and even living aboard or your dream of one day sailing to far off places, even around the world!

When buying a boat, a step by step approach is vital if you want to avoid a costly buying mistake.  And one of the key components of a costly buying mistake, apart from money, is confidence or loss of confidence.

Secondly, buying the right boat for the right purpose at the right time is about gaining boating confidence.  But not just gaining confidence, but maintaining your confidence to operate your boat successfully.  The number of boats that never leave the docks is quite large.  Gaining confidence and then making sure you don’t lose that confidence and become too scared to use your boat or leave the dock, is an example of a costly buying mistake.  We don’t want that to happen to you.

As we mentioned in the first blog, these questions are not rocket science and are really quite common sense, but we see people time and time again fail to take the time to go back to basics and get good answers lined upfront.

So, let’s get into question # 2 of the 4 key questions before you buy a boat.

Where are you going to use your boat?

Where you are most likely to use your boat may have a large bearing on what you should buy.

The reason this is important, is that the distance and types of waters that you wish to travel determines the range of your boat.  The range is how far the boat can travel with the fuel onboard, or without refueling.  Also, how far and where you go are important factors in assessing the sea worthiness of the boat and being safe at sea.

If your boat use will be inland, on lakes and rivers that’s quite a different type of boat than sailing at sea for months at a time.

Safety is number one priority and where you’ll travel in your boat potentially has a large bearing on risks and safety at sea.

Let’s use Singapore as an example.  As Singapore is such a small country, it can be a bit limited for boating destinations as you don’t have to go very far before you must clear immigration. There are pro’s and con’s for having lots of countries around you!  But, with these types of limitations, you might have further shores in mind.

Consider the following places one by one using Singapore as an example, and answer yes or no to the following question, where will you use your boat?

    1. In Singapore waters; St Johns and Lazarus Islands, Changi sailing club, Raffles Marina and surrounding waters (y/n)
    2. Nongsa Point Batam, Tioman or greater Indonesia (y/n)
    3. Sebana Cove or Sibu Malaysia (y/n)
    4. Greater Malaysia, Langkawi, Port Dickson (y/n)
    5. Thailand, Phuket, Krabi (y/n)
    6. North Asia and beyond (y/n)
    7. Around the world (y/n)
    8. Other areas (y/n)

Using the same approach to question 1 in the first blog, putting the ‘yes’ answers into order of priority is the next step.  Make a mental note of the first, second and third highest priority locations where you wish to use your boat.

Where you wish to use your boat might change over the next 2-3 years.  If you are new to boating, once you gain more experience and nautical miles under your belt, you may be ready to take on greater journeys with your experience.

A question worth considering is whether the boat you purchase today will be the boat that will take you where you wish to go in 4-5 years’ time?  A potential mistake could be buying the boat for the 5-year plan, today.  If you don’t have a lot of boating experience, then it might make more sense and for your boating confidence, to buy for your current level of boating expertise.  Getting clear on this dilemma will help avoid costly boat buying mistakes.

Do take some time to think about what you would need your boat to do in the next 2-3 years and what your goals are over the next 5 years.  Don’t be alarmed if this is potentially two boats, not one.  It’s better to get a heads-up on this possibility now.

Spend some time considering these questions and by answering all 4 key questions you’ll be more solid in your boat search which will ultimately save you time, energy and money.

Now,  let’s get onto Question # 3  – How much time do you have to use your boat?

Note:  Are you new to boating? or new to boating in Asia? If you want to get complete confidence in your boating decision, without high stress and uncertainty of brokers and dealers, check out the BASCO Boat Buyers Academy.  The academy will get you up to speed on the in’s and out’s so there’s no costly boat buying mistake or,  you’re still stuck at the dockside wondering.

BASCO Boat Buyers Academy