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Old 01-21-2019, 04:26 PM   #1
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Is there a best time of year to buy a boat?

Sorry if this has already been covered, but my search didn't turn up anything.
Plan on buying our first motor yacht sometime later this year. Will be looking on the east coast centered in the mid-Atlantic region. In the sailboat market, new listings tended to expand in the spring and again in the fall. Is that true for motor yachts as well, or is there a different seasonality? If it matters, we're looking for something in the mid-40' range; at present our target boat is Tollycraft 44 but of course we'll be open to any others with similar design parameters.
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David
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Old 01-21-2019, 05:00 PM   #2
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Being from New England I see there are more listings in the fall(folks are done with boating and don't want to do winter maintenance) or B spring as folks decide not to boat or upgrade. Additionally I would think increased listings in the spring as interest is higher and it is easier to show a boat that is not wrapped.

Good luck and enjoy the hunt
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Old 01-21-2019, 06:23 PM   #3
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Based on a year's experience as a yacht broker in Annapolis, peak selling was in April-May, summer slowed down a bit and picked up again at the time of the Annapolis boat show in October and then was dead until April of the next year.


The opposite may be true for South Florida though.


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Old 01-21-2019, 06:36 PM   #4
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This would be a good question for a broker.

However, after buying some 20 boats, my best deal have been late summer especially in the north, but before going on the hard for winter. In the south, I've done well in the winter as late as April, but the few much later than Feb it got a bit harder.

However, the main thing in buying a boat is to find a motivated seller. And you can usually find them all year round, especially with bigger boat and boats that just don't sell fast.
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Old 01-22-2019, 11:57 AM   #5
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After 22 years as a broker I cannot say there is a best time of year to buy. When I sold boats in Connecticut boats in the 35 to 55 foot range sold best in the fall. Buyers wanted to make sure they had the correct boat for the next summer season and did not want to wait for the spring. Wintertime sales in the northeast always had issues with winterizing a boat after a sometime frigid sea trial.
Here in Florida sales are year round but may actually be slower in the summer. Florida also has a tax program for a buyer to keep a boat here for up to 6 months with no sales tax due so northern buyers can buy here in the winter, and take the boat home in the spring.
Since many buyers can spend a year or more to find the perfect boat to fit their needs, start looking now!
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Old 01-22-2019, 12:14 PM   #6
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The best time is when you find the boat you have to have or at least really want.
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Old 01-22-2019, 12:28 PM   #7
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It seems to be a sellers market these days. I would think it's more a matter of finding what you want and being ready to buy.

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Old 01-22-2019, 05:30 PM   #8
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I learned one lesson the hard way in my youth: Never buy a frozen boat.
Rotten, saturated cores can seem quite solid when they're frozen.

The other problem with midwinter shopping is, it might be hard to do a proper survey and sea trial when everything is winterized and docks are pulled, at least here in the cold north.
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