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Buying a boat: is it logically justifiable to own a boat?


Even die-hard boating enthusiasts ask themselves now and then whether it makes sense to own a floating base. The confession of an anonymous doubter.

Thinking logically and calculating coolly, boat ownership actually makes no sense to most people. Boats are the opposite of wealth accumulation in that they require maintenance and are always causing some kind of expense. In many places, they can only be used for half a year, if at all, and you can only use them to drive your children to football training or ballet rehearsal in extremely rare cases.

So if you don’t run a business for which a boat is absolutely necessary, there is no logical reason for you to buy one. Just imagine how much artificial intelligence would have to flow into a software program that calculates all the relevant factors: income versus expenses, available versus required time, etc. and comes to this conclusion: “Buy a boat quickly.” That would be fuzzy logic on the warpath.

But for some of us, while owning a boat causes a headache, not having one is extremely painful. Starting with my grandparents, my family was always in the fortunate position of living near water and being able to travel by boat in the summer. My wife and I have tried it three times as boat owners: With a J / 22 that we shared with my sister. That went well for two years. Then followed two years with a J / 35 and finally a Hobie 33 Racer / Cruiser, which we also owned for two years. After selling the Hobie, we were boatless for two years. None of this sounds like logic, not even fuzzy.

The J / 22 was fun, but we wanted something bigger. The J / 35 was a giant leap that was a little overwhelming, so it had to be gone. The Hobie 33 was an attempt to sail something more exciting that was also easier to handle. It did, but not to the extent desired, and the boat wasn’t as versatile as the J / 35.

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A friend told me that I was someone who only buys boats for restoration and then loses interest. “As soon as you have replaced the stanchions, the end is in the shaft,” he said simply. I hope he is wrong. The last two summers were quite entertaining. B. to sail on the boats of the other regattas instead of working on your own project. Does it have something to disembark after the race, or at the end of the season not having to worry about what needs to be repaired or replaced. Or even just clearing out the boat to make it ready for winter storage and winter storage.

And yet: Something is simply missing without a boat. Sailing is fun, but you can’t bring the whole family with you. And of course it’s about a lot more than just regatta sailing. Owning a boat lets you break out of the structured and timed world you know from your job or the endless training sessions in youth sports. Instead, you go sailing, fishing, swimming or going on a trip. With or without guests. It gives you the freedom and power to operate your boat exactly as you see fit. Ironically, you miss endless projects, but that can also be very satisfying because you can tell that the boat has really become your own through the various upgrades and conversions.

However, one should not avoid talking about the problem. It remains tough to decide to jump into the deep end and buy a floating base. You have to be able to rationalize pretty well, like my friend Phil, for example, who financed his three daughters college education and said that it doesn’t matter how much you save for university, the money goes into their account anyway. Or you stick to this joke: “You just have to look at the boat as a cheap house on the beach”. Or you can get the best excuse out of the moth box: “Our children are not getting any younger and neither are we”.

Armed with these mantras, you sit down for hours at websites where the buying process begins today.

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