Friday, May 06, 2022

A couple of thoughts on the price of boats...

A problematic Caribbean situation, five monkeys, and learning celestial navigation...

As I’ve mentioned before, I follow the used cruising boat market. An obsession that has taught me a lot about the real vs perceived value of boats. Not to mention the poor logic of many boat sellers and buyers.

Case in point: some six years ago, I saw a boat that, by my calculations, was worth somewhere between $10K-$15K. The owner, however, was asking for $20K. Since sellers ask for more than they expect to get, the $20K price should be a starting number for negotiation rather than a firm price.

I get that and understand the mindset. Too bad the seller didn’t grok that as well.

The seller keeps renewing and updating his ad like clockwork. The time it’s been on the market, the price has continued to be pegged at $20K. This boat has not sold despite receiving several offers of sums more aligned with the boat’s actual value. The owner has not used the boat in six years and in a marina berth costing somewhere between $250 to $350 a month. The boat’s a budgetary black hole and the newish picture in the ad shows a boat poorly maintained at a level that will not entice buyers. Doing the math, six years of marina rent would be close to $15K and, assuming the owner has the boat insured as the marina requires, his outgoings are going to be greater than his asking price.

I mention this as the boat will never sell at the asking price and won’t sell until it comes up as part of the owner’s estate. But simply put, the silly asking price does not just affect his boat, but the entire boat market.

There are so many moldering overpriced boats on the market that I’ve started not including such beasts in my averaging since they distort the equation.

Listening to Richard Thompson

So it goes...