Thanks for the nudges in a smart direction. Maybe someone can answer this.
I have a somewhat (at least I think so) unusual personality in that I'm totally comfortable buying things sight unseen, as long as the product meets or exceeds my needs. For example, I'm on my second Subaru car (bought both brand new). In both cases, I purchased the cars without ever taking a test drive. Both times, my extensive research led me to vehicles I truly enjoy and hang on to for many years (traded in my 2006 for a 2019 model).
I know buying a boat is a totally different animal and I agree it is absolutely necessary to step onto the vessel and thoroughly consider it's size, feel, history and layout.
I'm not at all concerned about Insurance requirements, being an Insurance Broker myself, because I will absolutely be taking hands-on boater operation courses. I've already passed my online certification for CA. Also, I'm a freak about safety, so the USCG can come aboard at any time without me batting an eye.