Friday, January 16, 2015

7 Tips for Buying a Boat

Boat Show Season is here! If you've been considering purchasing a boat for the upcoming season, now is the time to do it. Boat Shows are a great place to see many different types of boats all at once and compare them. If you've never purchased a boat before, the task can seem overwhelming. Summerset Boat Lifts has put together this list of 7 things to consider when purchasing a boat!

1. Decide on the Right Type of Boat. 

With so many different types of boats, how do you know which one is right for you?  The best way to decide is not by how the boat looks, but by what you are going to use the boat for. Cruising boats, such as deck boats or pontoons, are used for entertaining guests while delivering good performance. Some cruisers are made for daytime only, while others offer cabins for overnightting capabilities. Fishing boats have open cockpits in the back to maximize deck space for fishing. As a result, there is less seating and these boats are not meant for entertaining a crowd. If you want to wakeboard, waterski or tube, then a sport boat or ski boat is what you need. Make your decision on the type of boat that fits with your primary use.

2. Choose Between New or Used. 

New and used boats both have their pros and cons. New boats are unblemished and should provide you with trouble-free operation right from the start, as well as warranty coverage. The downside of course, is that these boats are a bit pricier than a similar used version. Used boats on the otherhand, may or may not still be under warranty. With used boats, you are taking a risk on the overall quality of the boat. You don't know the history, its maintenance or whether it's been in an accident or suffered damage.

3. Pick Who You Want to Buy From. 

While buying from a private seller may seem like the best option financially, you are unlikely to get a warranty and you have to take the sellers word for the condition of the boat. If you choose to buy from a dealer, you'll be offered a warrantly that will protect you against unexpected repair costs. Dealers need to protect their reputation, therefore they're less likely to sell you a piece of crap. However, make sure to do your research on the dealer before you make a decision.  Talk to others that have bought from the particular dealer you're considering. Ask for client testimonials and credentials. You want to make sure you are buying from a reputable company.

4. Inspect the Boat Thouroughly. 

Whether you've decided to buy new or used, you should always thoroughly inspect the boat before purchasing it. You wouldn't buy a house or car without an inspection, so why should a boat be any different? A professional marine surveyor will be able to provide a full, objective report on the boat. The survey will reveal any anomalies with the boat and let you know whether or not you are getting a good boat at a good value.

5. Consider the Warranties Available. 

Consider the warranties on each of the boats you have in consideration. Warranties are a valuable and important factor that should influence your decision. Some warranties are transferrable, which is important if you decide to re-sell your boat. Find out what specifically the warranty includes and covers, as well as the service you'll recieve if something does fail. A good way to determine the quality of service is to ask for references or client testimonials. If you're purchasing a used boat, make sure to have it surveyed first because you won't have that warranty to fall back on if/when something goes wrong.

6. Determine Costs of Ownership. 

For many, the cost of owning a boat is nothing compared to the benefits of ownership. However, you want to make sure you're aware of all the costs associated with owning a boat before you make the purchase. In addition to just the fiberglass, you will need to pay for insurance, maintenance and storage. You will need to add in these extra expenses, such as the cost of your Lake of the Ozarks boat lift, when you are determining the cost of boat ownership.

7. Know How to Drive the Boat.  

The way a boat handles and the way it feels on the water is another very important consideration. Taking your prospective boat out on a test drive is a great way to make sure you're getting what you want. Operating a powerboat is not like driving a car. Driving a boat is not difficult, but like anything else it is a skill you will need to learn. Knowing how to handle wind, waves, tides, currents, weather, and other boat traffic are all key to a safe boating experience. Many states even require you to take at least a boating safety course.

While buying a boat may be easier than buying a home, it's still the 2nd largest investment most people make, so you should consider your options carefully. Once you've decided on a boat, you're going to need a boat lift at the Lake of the Ozarks! Summerset Boat Lifts specializes in Galva-Hoist floating boat lifts, engineered at the Lake for the Lake, Lake of the Ozarks. Be sure to come see us at the Overland Park Boat Show January 22-25!

1165 Jeffries Road Osage Beach, MO  65065

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