Why Buying a Boat is a Bad Idea | 16 Reasons You Should Not Invest


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The allure of midsummer boating and fantasies of visiting one of the many fantastic boating locations may lead you to believe that buying a boat is a brilliant idea. Before becoming your captain, continue reading to understand why buying a boat is a bad idea.

Simply said, boats aren’t just an investment. Depreciation begins whenever the boat is released into the waters, and it continues while the boat is used. Except if you convert your yacht into a business, plan to launch a ton of cash and believe the adventures are beneficial.

Additionally, many people ignore the up-front and recurring costs that come with owning a boat. You’d have to lease a dock area or a storeroom to retain the boat provided you acquired the holiday lakehouse even before the boat. Weather permitting, you will need to store it in a climate-controlled facility for the season and pay a significant fee.

Why Buying a Boat is a Bad Idea

Why Buying a Boat is a Bad Idea

Buying a boat, as previously said, is a horrible idea. The following are some additional compelling reasons:

Boats need a lot of upkeep.

In boating care, do an important inspection and cleaning after every use as a general rule. In particular, every 101 hrs of operations, a complete examination is performed.

The basic utility inspection involves verifying for leakage, toughening bolts, lubricating the propellers, and comprehensive cleaning, especially in saltwater environments. Annual checks should be performed by a professional since they might be costly if fixes are necessary.

Boat technicians and fixes are more difficult to get than automobile technicians and fixes, and boat parts are typically more expensive. If you do not even, especially during hot climate, you’ll have to keep your boat properly and completely presoak it, in addition to doing basic maintenance.

The cost of a boat is increasing

Due to the epidemic, boating has grown in popularity in the last year – it’s a fun, socially isolated outdoor pastime. Costs will rise due to this increase. The average price of personal watercraft has increased to $13,000, as new boat sales have increased by 35% in the last year.

There is a boat shortage

Boats are costly to purchase, but they also take a long time to arrive. Boat dealers are reporting wait times of three to six months due to delivery delays.

The waiting period for customized orders might be significantly longer. Some would-be boaters in numerous areas will have to store their demand for the winter by the time it arrives.

Invisible costs

Many individuals are unaware of the fees associated with purchasing a boat. Many other boats got taken aback when the invoices began to arrive.

Concerns about liability

While it may seem enjoyable to be the “party person” for a group of friends at first, there are considerable liability risks when arranging boating gatherings. If someone is hurt while in your boat, they or their family may file a lawsuit against you.

Some boat insurance plans only cover you or your close family as the driver. When there’s a lively audience on board, this must get considered.

Finding replacement parts can be difficult

It’s one thing to have to pay for repairs; researching and ordering the components you need is another. According to water sports enthusiasts, boat components are challenging to come by and frequently take a long time to arrive. Meanwhile, you’re paying for a yacht that you can’t use.


Insurance is never a pleasant experience. It’s no different when it comes to comprehending and purchasing the appropriate boat insurance. The cost of insurance varies greatly depending on the degree of coverage and the characteristics of each boat. Of course, adding an extra monthly payment may cause you to reconsider a purchase.


You’ll need to pay a yearly fee to operate your boat on the water, which is an easy-to-forget cost of boat ownership. The prices differ depending on the state, kind of vessel, and size. However, if you’re trying to live frugally, having another continuous expenditure is never a good idea.

Boating permits

In most situations, you’ll have to pay to drive a boat. It’s not the same as a regular driver’s license, and you’ll have to take a test to receive it. This implies you’ll have to spend more money and time before you can enjoy ownership.


Believe again if you think you’re done with costs. Then there’s the tax on your yacht. Taxes vary by state; in Rhode Island, there are none, while in South Carolina, owners must pay an annual tax equivalent to 10.5 percent of their boat’s value.

You’ll need a medium to get to the water

You’ll also have transportation charges and inconvenience if you don’t own lakefront property or rent a slip. Putting a boat on its trailer, hauling it to the water, and launching it into the water are examples of this.

Also, reversing that come home means spending a significant portion of the day on logistics rather than having fun. Not to mention the expense of registering a boat trailer in certain areas, separate from the boat itself.

Mooring and Docking

If you wish to anchor a yacht, you may have to wait years for a berth. If you’re fortunate, you’ll receive one. Expect to pay anything from $250 per year to $1,000 per month for bigger vessels if you do. You’ll need a rowboat, dinghy, or kayak to get to your boat if you acquire a mooring.

Boating equipment

Following the purchase of a boat, further costs for supplies get incurred. You’ll need life jackets, a safety horn, flares, and an anchor, among other things. Do you need a new sound system or water sports equipment? You’ll have to pay for it as well.


Even after all of these costs, you won’t be able to use your boat for “free.” This is because most boats need gasoline, which is an ongoing expenditure.

Boats get heavily hit by depreciation.

Most boats depreciate, but purchasers of pontoon and fishing boats may regret their decision more than others. Pontoon boats and fishing boats depreciate more quickly than other types of boats, with resale values declining by roughly 25% to 30% within the first year or two of ownership.

Bad weather renders your toy useless

Boating is popular in several places, including many Great Lakes states, although it is seasonal and subject to rainy or cold weather. Professionals advise against buying a boat unless you reside in an area with consistently lovely weather.

Alternatives to Purchasing a Boat

Why Buying a Boat is a Bad Idea

If you can’t afford a boat, you don’t have to purchase one. If you desire to have a good time on the water but can’t afford it, these choices may be able to help you keep your boating dreams alive.

Boat sharing on a peer-to-peer basis

This works similarly to Airbnb. Only you’ll be sharing boat time. The service is becoming more popular in boating locations across the globe, including the United States and Australia.

The boat owner shares the vessel with you for a charge under this arrangement. The yacht owner may deal with you on occasion. However, a growing number of individuals are outsourcing their crafts to organizations that handle listing, advertising, and insurance.

This option allows you to spend as much time on the water as you like. If your financial situation improves or you believe that purchasing a boat is the most excellent option to enjoy your time, go for it.

Shared time

Customers may book a block of time in a company’s fleet of boats via timeshare contracts. While these agreements might save money and provide a variety of boating possibilities, the corporations occasionally use hard-tackle techniques. Before you use a timeshare service, be sure you understand the conditions of the contract.


You pay for the time you spend on the boat when using a charter service. Depending on the business or boat owner, you may be liable for the fuelling, navigating, and any damages during your stay on the boat. However, it is an inexpensive way to spend quality time on the boat.

Boat Clubs 

For a monthly or annual subscription, you may join boat clubs to access a range of boat types. Boat clubs are ideal for severe boaters since they cover operation expenses. However, the high membership costs are unnecessary if you use the water a few times a year.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is buying a boat a bad idea?

Yes, the above reasons why buying a boat is a bad idea will enlighten you more.

What is the average lifespan of a boat?

Boats typically survive between 10 and 25 years. However, life expectancy might range from 5 to 100 years (for big ships). This gets determined mainly by the materials used in construction and the boat’s frequency. The use of the boat is also crucial in determining its lifespan.

What are the uses of boats?

Today, boats get mainly utilized for freight transportation, travel, pleasure, housing, businesses, fishing, sports, and military purposes, among other things. Ships (large boats) are often used for freight transport, whereas small boats get utilized for enjoyment, fishing, sports, and commerce.

When is the best time to purchase a boat?

Professional experience has shown that boats between two and four years old have the highest chances. Of course, one-year-old boats are difficult to come by since few people sell at that age.


In conclusion, buying a boat comes with diverse demerits. And if you need more help on this, the above tips on why buying a boat is a bad idea will aid you immensely.