Boat Ownership – Eyes Wide Open

Boats CrossingIf you’re in the market for a super-yacht like some of the ones we’ve featured in our news coverage to date, you probably don’t need to worry too much about humdrum things like boat finance.

But, if like most of the boat owners in Australia (the ‘average’ boat is just 7.5m long), you’re not running your boat on a multimillion dollar budget, it’s important to be aware of what expenses to cater for when working out the ownership cost of your new boat.

Having said this, getting a boat, from arranging the boat loan to getting the boat out on the water, needn’t be a costly affair – in fact you can be up and running for less than what you might spend in monthly repayments on a new car.

Marine Finance

Just give us a call of course 🙂 . There are a range of interest rates and deals available for a variety of different circumstances and we always aim to get you the lowest rate*.

Boat Equipment Costs

When you’re arranging the purchase of your new boat, take a bit of time to check out whether it has all the necessary equipment, from the standpoint of navigation, safety and simply comfort. Marine electronics these days are compact, relatively robust, reliable and pretty affordable. Here are some basic pieces of equipment and an approximate cost:

  • Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacons (EPIRBs) $329 RRP
  • GPS/Chart Plotters $449 – $2200+
  • Life Jackets $30 – $150+
  • Marine flares $160 – $250+
  • Boat Oars (depending on the size of your boat) $30 – $150+
  • Fire Extinguisher $24 – $50+

Download a list of Safety Equipment For Recreational Boating (QLD)
Maritime Handbook (NSW)
Boating Safety Equipment (VIC)

Fuel and General Operating Costs

These can be quite variable and you can’t compare fuel consumption with that of a car. Unless you’re using your boat for watersports like waterskiing, you’re unlikely to be using the motor all the time, so fuel use shouldn’t be high. If you’re getting a yacht (the variety with sails on) then the motor is just for navigating in and out of the marina and when the wind stops blowing (or blows a little too hard), so fuel costs should be even lower. But certainly check the fuel consumption of the engine on the boat to make sure you’ve done your sums right (take a look at the Boating Mag article on calculating boat fuel consumption).

Boat Maintenance Costs

The more you’re able to do yourself, the more you can avoid costly maintenance further down the track. Simply washing the hull down with fresh water after an outing and keeping your boat covered up will keep it in great shape. Obvious maybe, but an older boat is going to require much more maintenance than a new one, so factor this in. And it’s generally a good idea to service your engine every 100 hours or every year to make sure it’s in fully working condition – an engine failure out at sea is not fun.

Storing, Parking & Berthing Your Boat

If it’s just a small boat, the driveway is probably your best option, although there are dry stack and rack storage options at most marinas. For anything larger, or if you’re planning on using the boat frequently, you’ll have to factor in a marina berth or permanent mooring somewhere.

Boat Insurance

Generally speaking boat insurance premiums are dependent on the cost of the boat, as well as type and length. You can compare options online and there are specialist marine insurance companies as well.

Putting The Cost In Perspective

And just to put things in perspective, this is what would cost to keep a 180ft ‘average’ superyacht on the water in the US per annum:

  • Fuel: $400,000
  • Docking: $350,000
  • Insurance: $240,000
  • Maintenance/Repairs: $1,000,000
  • Crew Salaries: $1,400,000

(you’re already ahead, aren’t you?)

So, forget the old notion that “a boat is a hole in the water you pour money into”, give us a call to arrange your boat finance or apply online and you’ll be out enjoying yourself in no time at all.

Image credit: www.flickr.com/photos/proimos/5967286313/

Feature image by Nick Webb on Flickr.

*Remember boat interest rates are subject to your personal credit history and current credit health. If in doubt give us a call.

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