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3 Things to Keep in Mind Before You Buy a Boat

boat dealerDid you know that nine out of ten Americans live within an hour’s drive of a boating lake? This may be a surprising fact but it isn’t to your local boat dealer. As you start your search for a new fishing boat, or even boating accessories, keep these helpful tips in mind.

Boating is For Everyone

First of all, boating is not only for the rich. Boating is actually enjoyed mostly by families making less than $100,000 dollars a year. The high-end powersports dealership may try and sell you that $250,000 dollar luxury cruiser, but there may be better deals elsewhere.

Do Your Research
Second, make sure you know what you want before heading to the boat dealer. With the variety of boats today it can be hard to choose. Do some research and find something that fits in your budget and it will provide the fun you are looking for. When test driving or inspecting the boat, be sure to consider how you plan to use it during your search. Check for ample storage space, drainage systems, amount of seating, and even practical add-ons such as a sound system, sunshade, cooler space, or even a table and seating (especially on pontoon boats).

Another thing to keep in mind is that boat sales are on the rise, so be sure to shop around. There are way more opportunities to find a bargain than ever before. Additionally, the demand for recreational boating is expected to increase another ten percent in the coming year, exceeding the $8.4 billion already seen from 2016.

Negotiate

So you’ve found a boat you think you want to buy. Let’s make sure you know what you’re getting into. Is it in your budget? Although financing is often available, the less you have to worry about a monthly payment, the more you can relax and enjoy the experience of being out on the water.

Have you considered the extra costs/fees? Buying a boat is just the beginning. Much like buying a car, it is important to get all the information upfront and even test drive what you’re getting. It is easy to fall for the smooth sales pitch, which often neglects to mention the extra few thousand dollars in additional costs (taxes, trailer, licensing, dock fees, association dues, maintenance and repair, insurance, etc.) The trick is to negotiate! Let the boat dealers pitch to you about their awesome promotions, but be sure to counter with them so they can take care of some of the additional fees. They may even throw in some extra accessories in an attempt to further persuade you.

At the end of the day, you’re going to buy what you want, but hopefully, these tips will help ensure you get a good deal as well as an enjoyable boat. Remember, you have the advantage when it comes to purchasing a boat, as the boating market is continually growing, boating locations are close to everyone, and through your research, you've no doubt become somewhat of a boat buying expert.