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Recreational Boating – Tips for Buying a Used Boat

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Recreational boating for family fun, fishing, and relaxing is popular among lake home owners. You can save money buying a boat if you consider a used boat. In deciding which type of boat is best for your family there are a few things you should consider.

Decide What Type of Recreational Boating You PreferRecreational Boating

Will you stick to recreational boating at the lake or also on rivers and the ocean?

Will you be using your boat for hunting, fishing, skiing, cruising, or racing?

The recreational activities you prefer should impact your decision on the type of boat you purchase.

Research your options prior to purchase and check out average prices of your preferred style.

Some other questions to ask yourself are:

  • Do you want a hardtop, canvas top, or no top at all?
  • Do you want an inboard engine or an outboard one?
  • Would you like an aluminum hull or fiberglass hull?

Call About the Used Boat

Once you actually find the boat that you are interested in and know reasonable prices, you should reach out to the seller or the dealer. Ask questions about the boats and show interest but do not admit you are ready to purchase a boat.

Make sure to write your questions down before calling them so you can write down each answer you receive.

Some things you will want to know are:

  • The year and the make of the engine and boat hull.
  • How many owners the boat has had.
  • If the boat has been in fresh or salt water, and the last time it was used.

If the person seems very persistent in selling the boat or in a hurry it is possible the boat may have some issues. Request an appointment to take a test drive prior to purchase.

Make an Appointment to Test Drive Boats

You will always want to see the boat and drive it prior to purchasing the boat. Most boat sellers will meet you at the water so you can take a test run.Recreational Boating Test Drive

If they do not have time for you or you do not feel comfortable buying the boat without a test run, walk away.

Inspect the Boat

When you test drive the boat make sure check that there are no cracks in the hull. Look for any parts that look new, as well as signs of neglect. Do not be afraid to ask questions about oddities you notice.

It is always better to get more detail and a full observation than to purchase a recreational boat that does not fit your needs or run properly.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Laurie January 10, 2017 at 7:14 pm

I do think it is important to think about how you would use the boat – for parties, fishing, relaxing, water sports, etc. From there you can pinpoint the types of boats that would best suit what you want. Ask family and friends that have boats for advice, look at reviews and ratings, compare prices, and read all about the different models. If you narrow it down there to what you are interested in, you can search to see if there are any used boats that are for sale. Great tips, thanks for sharing!

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Gloria Durst July 11, 2017 at 8:44 pm

I like how you say that you want to test drive a boat before you buy it. It would make sense to get a feel for it and make sure things work well. I’m looking for a boat to buy, so I’ll have to remember to test it before I buy it.

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