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Old 02-11-2017, 08:51 AM   #41
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Upon rereading of your first post, you discuss buying a smaller house on the Chesapeake.

Unless you are deciding to rent it out as a source of income or future escape.....your "plunge" is really only a step and until everything you own is aboard with the exception of a car.....it really isn't a "plunge".

Even after 5 years of steady liveaboard with no dirt attachments, and almost 12 years total in life....I am looking at small RVs to enhance what I have and accommodate seeing family and friends who don't live near the coast.

Gathering info that best fits your situation is good....worrying about the Uber rich or Uber poor is just something I assume serious boaters here have already figured out.

It is rare that people buying liveaboards don't understand their own finances, just what the hidden costs and future dissapointments from not buying right might be.

Ultimately you have to match your wants, desires and budget to what people's advice is...and I believe I posted before that the younger the move the more flexibility one usually musters. Otherwise make sure you not only pick what you want, but envision one or both becoming partially disabled, or a significant economic hit, etc......

While I probably could have waited a year or two before buying my trawler...my own personal experience and situation warranted a throw away boat. If in 20 years it brings me a few pennies back on the dollar...great...if I have to spend 30 grand pulling the good equipment out and putting the rest in a dumpster...so be it. Economically and spiritually I know I beat the odds.
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Old 02-11-2017, 08:57 AM   #42
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While I probably could have waited a year or two before buying my trawler...my own personal experience and situation warranted a throw away boat. If in 20 years it brings me a few pennies back on the dollar...great...if I have to spend 30 grand pulling the good equipment out and putting the rest in a dumpster...so be it. Economically and spiritually I know I beat the odds.
Amen brutha!!!! There is a lot of "value" in living aboard that you cannot put on the balance sheet!!! Great post!
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Old 02-12-2017, 02:20 AM   #43
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"One Head or Two? Does a second head provide a worthwhile more enjoyable experience with guests, act as a good emergency head, or is it really unnecessary?" Think of the boat just like your current home. Don't you appreciate the privacy of your own bathroom, without guests coming in and using it? Personally I don't even like my kids using my bathroom (what a mess afterwards!).

However, if your budget/boat size doesn't support two heads then it's better if the head is in a different room than the vanities/shower. That way someone taking a long shower does not hold up others who have to go.

"Is a stand up engine room worth it?" I flew to Turkey to visit a boat builder and the dang thing had exactly 4ft of headroom, which was 1 inch too short for me to even sit on a low stool. What a waste of money for a flight and hotel, but worth every penny! For long term usage forget about anything that is "sole buried." My previous boat had 5ft of headroom, not exactly standing, but sorta hunched over isn't bad and it eliminates crawling on your hands and knees.

The right vessel... if this is your first large boat or the first time you'll be spending a long period onboard, then you might consider this first purchase as an interim step. Get something smaller and cheaper by all means. Live on it for a couple of years until you can determine exactly what you want in a vessel. Then move up in size afterwards, hopefully without any significant loss of money.

There is the very wise saying about buying the smallest boat possible that fits your needs. However, in my opinion for living aboard or distant cruising then the bigger the better.

Good luck.
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Old 02-13-2017, 07:22 AM   #44
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The hassles I have seen with a "big" liveaboard is that folks never use it enough to be comfortable operating it.

There is the same TMS (too much stuff) hassle with a 30 fter and a 70 fter , always a project to clear up and get RFS (ready for sea).

With more volume there are frequently more systems , so more things undergoing maint on the larger boats.More reason to never move.

Lived aboard full time for 22+ years in NYC , so got to watch lots of boaters.

Spent every vacation underway , and went out for a sail on New Years Day , regardless of the weather, just to wave at the marine motorists slip bound ,still 4 months from removing their winter covers.

Bigger is better IF you need the size for your operation.

But an echo in the main salon serves no purpose.
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Old 02-14-2017, 09:09 AM   #45
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Unasked Liveaboard Questions

I too would like to weigh in on this discussion. My husband and I decided to transition from sail to power 4 years ago. We had finally reached the age that we wanted to be warm, dry and comfortable!

Cruising does not have to be an all or nothing decision. With a home, children and grandchildren in Southern California we wanted to be present in their lives. Our solution was to buy a trawler, keep it in the Pacific Northwest and cruise from May to October, returning to our land home for the rest of the year. The advantages have been that we are enjoying a fantastic cruising area at the best time of year and it provides a whole new venue to share with family and friends.

After spending a year looking at many trawlers, both new and previously owned, we decided on building a new Kadey Krogen 44. Our decision to purchase a new or fairly new boat was that, given our age at the time--65--we wanted a reliable boat that we would not have to spend more time fixing than cruising.

We have not regretted our choice. There is enough room to comfortably cruise with another couple and still enough room for 2 grandchildren (the pilot house settee makes into a "double ") and our 2nd stateroom has a queen size bed. We only have 1 head. Would we like two--it would be nice, but not necessary. After all, this is a boat--not the Hilton! The engine room has great access, but it is not stand up. Hasn't been an issue at all. We have not had a problem with getting a slip in marinas or anchoring in small harbors given our size. The two of us can easily handle the boat. Would not change a thing about our choice.
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Old 02-14-2017, 09:12 AM   #46
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Of course cruising isn't all or nothing.


Even liveaboards fall into 2 or more categories.
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Old 02-14-2017, 09:15 AM   #47
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Even liveaboards fall into 2 or more categories.
Wifey B: More like 2 bazillion categories.
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Old 02-14-2017, 09:18 AM   #48
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Meaning the generally accepted major categories of dirt free and still with real estate.
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Old 02-14-2017, 09:32 AM   #49
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Meaning the generally accepted major categories of dirt free and still with real estate.
Wifey B: i know...that's the basics, you either have a land home or don't. Still I've run across some strange permutations. One retired couple was adamant that unlike us they were full time liveaboards. Then found out they spent mid-October to mid-January at their daughter's home with her, husband and grand children, even had their own apartment and private entrance in the home. And they'd visit for 2-4 weeks once or twice in addition. Turned out we spent more time living on a boat than they did. Then a couple said they could never part with their land home. Come to find out their son and his family lived in it and had for three years and they hadn't spent a night there themselves, but still didn't consider themselves full time liveaboards.

I think one of the real challenges is figuring out what is right for you. I know we had no idea when we started. It was all so new to us. Our previous boat was a 30 foot bowrider, not like you're going to live on it. In fact, you've inspired me to start another thread....
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Old 02-14-2017, 09:39 AM   #50
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Both those examples still fit what I think fit the 2 basic definitions...especially the dirt home one...doesn't matter if it is rented as long as it still is in their name. Unless one has decided to keep it purposely as rental income for the rest of their boating days.
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Old 02-14-2017, 11:45 AM   #51
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Both those examples still fit what I think fit the 2 basic definitions...especially the dirt home one...doesn't matter if it is rented as long as it still is in their name. Unless one has decided to keep it purposely as rental income for the rest of their boating days.
It is also the "mental comfort" of knowing they have a place to go if the cruising thing stops being fun....regardless of how "recent" their experience is with visiting or living on the dirt. It serves as a security blanket. And I think women need that security blanket more than men. Men are a little more nomadic while women are a little more nesters. Anyway, I will likely keep a dirt home when I cruise full time to give her(and me too) a little comfort in knowing our entire being is not on the boat....whether we spend 100% of the time on it or not.
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Old 02-14-2017, 12:33 PM   #52
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I am finding the draw to get a small RV as a second place to store the few momentos I have left, a place to get off the boat till major repairs are done (living aboard during major repairs can tax anyone), and a tool to see family and friends not near the water.


It will be a small one to replace my truck that I don't use 6 months of the year anyhow...and if I homeport in different places, it allows more trips with less transiting familiar territory...and seeing more sights, possibly seeing great places to come back to by boat. Doing it in much less time.
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Old 02-14-2017, 12:37 PM   #53
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Observations after 18 years of owning Bay Pelican, a two stateroom, two head 42 ft. boat. The two staterooms were essential when we had guests. In between guests, the second stateroom is Deb's dressing room, closet etc. The second head was ripped out for storage space and is now my closet.

If you are only going to have one toilet you must be able to repair or rebuild the appliance as they all break sooner or later. We have an 18 year old Groco manual which serves well but needs repair every few years.

Washer / dryer. If you are living at anchor this makes life much easier. The combo units are so small (dishwasher size) that they likely save space in that having a washer on board allows for reducing the amount of clothing one keeps on board.

If you are going to be at anchor most of the time I suggest a 110 unit (Spendide) for North American boats as the wash cycle can be run on the inverter. Starting a generator to run the wash cycle is more generator time than I otherwise need.
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Old 02-14-2017, 01:21 PM   #54
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If you are going to be at anchor most of the time I suggest a 110 unit (Spendide) for North American boats as the wash cycle can be run on the inverter. Starting a generator to run the wash cycle is more generator time than I otherwise need.
Miele can be used the same and do twice the volume of wash.
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Old 02-14-2017, 01:23 PM   #55
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I am finding the draw to get a small RV as a second place to store the few momentos I have left, a place to get off the boat till major repairs are done (living aboard during major repairs can tax anyone), and a tool to see family and friends not near the water.


It will be a small one to replace my truck that I don't use 6 months of the year anyhow...and if I homeport in different places, it allows more trips with less transiting familiar territory...and seeing more sights, possibly seeing great places to come back to by boat. Doing it in much less time.
I think your situation points out something else and that is not to rush the plan. Yours has evolved. We talk about "the boat will choose you". Perhaps we should say that about the plan as well. Yours sounds like an excellent, well thought out plan but you didn't have the complete plan when you started.
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Old 02-14-2017, 02:01 PM   #56
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Like the old saying goes...


Anyone can have a plan, till the first punch (in life) changes all that.
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Old 02-14-2017, 02:04 PM   #57
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If those are the "requirements", you've just priced most folks out of living on a boat.

Just as in living on land, different folks have different requirements or expectations based on their available income and lifestyle. In my part of the country, there are people (families) living in $30K mobile homes and there are folks living in $30M mansions. I know of a guy who used to live on a 26' former sailboat anchored in the harbor who commuted to his job in a canoe. I doubt he had a shower and I suspect his head was a bucket that was dumped at night. No washer or dryer.

If someone wants to live on a boat, their financial reality will determine how many staterooms, how many heads, how much storage space, etc. It's not "one size fits all".
I agree completely with your last statement. Perhaps you missed the opening part of my post, repeated here:

"Great questions, and although the answer to each is very much an individual preference that you will ultimately have to answer yourself, I think it's good to hear what trade-offs other have made, and why."

Feel free to make different decisions on any and every point if something else works better for you,
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Old 02-18-2017, 06:55 AM   #58
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The question for many liveaboards is do you just like living aboard , or do you like using the boat,, AKA boating?

From what I have seen living aboard reduces boating.

So what do you want the boat for?
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Old 02-20-2017, 10:05 PM   #59
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Like the old saying goes...

Anyone can have a plan, till the first punch (in life) changes all that.
Mike Tyson's saying is displayed front and center at my boxing gym, but it goes "Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face"

Real bad-ass!
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Old 02-20-2017, 11:09 PM   #60
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The question for many liveaboards is do you just like living aboard , or do you like using the boat,, AKA boating?

From what I have seen living aboard reduces boating.

So what do you want the boat for?
We use our boat more than any other we've owned in the past because we're liveaboards. Many of the liveaboards we know here in the Puget Sound area are the same. Yet there are others that live on their boats as if it was a dockside condo and don't really take it out of the slip.

I can't say we're any happier than the folks that don't actual "boat". They love their lifestyle, too. It all depends on what you want and like.

As far as getting "ready for sea" (or as we say "rigged for sea") it takes us about 15 minutes to stow glass, the computer and other breakables. And we've done more than 3,000 miles in four years, so it's not a difficult proposition to change gears from in-the-slip life to being underway...
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