Date: 22 July 2014. Boat Buying with your New Partner.
All too often I hear couples
consider pooling their funds to buy the boat of their dreams.
Both often younger and neither partner has the funds to buy
outright. But together they can "swing it". It's the ticket
for boat ownership today versus at some point way down the line. And
doesn't that sound just splendid?
This article specifically speaks to
unmarried folks or those
who do not have a long term commitment and partnership.
First of course is finding the
boat. The dream boat might be a little higher priced, but with the two working
together that's doable. And of course a bit of sweat equity is
required too. No boat, not even a brand new one is "finished" upon
All boaters put time and money
into making their dreams a reality.
What is absolutely NOT OKAY by any
stretch of the imagination is when just one name is on the title of
the boat. This is especially true when we're talking about a
fixer-upper worth very little at purchase and potentially valued at
thousands after refurbishing. If two are pulling together to make
this boat fabulous you need to be joint owners.
Play the "What If?" scenario and
think about what would happen if you have dumped thousands of
dollars and hours into fixing up a dream boat. If the partnership
falls apart, how will the spoils be divided? If both names are not
on that title... well, it can get ugly.
And for those of us watching from
the sidelines, it's simply sad.
Far too often I've seen a couple
at a boatyard bust their everything to make a boat spectacular (or
nice enough) but then, as launch looms, the bickering and fights
begin. Gradually the dreams fade. The future becomes a victim to
unresolved arguments and a split occurs. If both names are not on
the title, then one can be forced o-u-t.
The reason I suspect is all those
expectations the twosome have spoken of so often... well, now it's
"Put up or shut up" and suddenly there's a lot at stake.
resistance to fear, mastery of fear -- not absence of fear. Mark
It's easy to be brave when you don't have to prove
anything. But dropping the lines and actually leaving?
That's a problem. And it can be a huge issue though neither
individual is willing to admit the fear that happens to ALL* of
*ALL certainly does include me. I worry too. It's
the nature of the beast, especially as a soloist. The fun
outstrips the nervousness and I do enjoy boating immensely.
Though I feel anxious I refuse to let temporary concerns prevent
me from being a cruiser.
The fellow can become fearful when
all those dreams are about to be realized. She wants to go and
suddenly he's got to be the captain. Taking responsibility for the
boat, the safety of the duo, and, well, it's always easier to be
courageous when the event is scheduled for next week.
She can get afraid too and
that's not pretty either. The female half become querulous,
argumentative, questioning every decision made regarding equipment,
etc. All at once the judgment she had trusted is deemed
unreliable. Someone else had a different experience and XYZ is
better than ABC and why is there no money for JKL? They need that
Throwing in liberal amounts of
alcohol doesn't help one iota.
Anyway, the fights begin and reach
a summit. Neither party is willing to give an inch so the couple
Suddenly the man has this boat,
fairly nicely fixed and he has no expectations to fulfill with any woman.
But he's lonesome and wants a gal to share the journey he's been
talking about all that time with Worker Woman.
And around the waterfront there
are sweet things who see a beautiful boat, not realizing the hours it took
to sand down the bottom and add two coats of barrier paint to the
hull. The Princess Babe sees herself on the back deck, wine glass in
hand while Macho Man neatly steers the boat through a cut into a
She's swimming naked. He's her
But then Princess discovers that
boating isn't all about sipping cold drinks after a lovely two hour
sail. It's raining, there's a drip over the bunk, the freezer
needs to be defrosted, the oil lanterns left black sooty residue all
over the overhead, and someone's got to clean it all. Pulling in the
line on the dinghy broke a fingernail, the sunburn is peeling, and her favorite outfit has
Plus Macho Man smells bad after
three hours in the bilge trying to track down an intermittent oil
leak. And there's no power because, well, we don't know why yet.
It doesn't take much adversity for
Princess to discover boating isn't for her and Macho Man is a grumpy
old man who can't fix it all RIGHT NOW. So Princess hops a
plane and heads for home.
Now Macho Man is in paradise,
alone. He's wishing perhaps that the original girl -- the one who
worked with him instead of against him -- was there. Finding a gal
who will pull her own weight, help and who actually knows what a
ratchet is and how to use it? Well, that's not so easy.
And Worker Woman? She's
So my advice is to be VERY careful
if you're considering a partnership not documented on paper.
Of course I hope your experience is wonderful. Just be aware that
statistically, you're in a precarious position. I wouldn't do it.
Seaweed is small -- just 23', but
she is affordable (almost!) and she's mine. All mine.
Have you ever owed a boat in a formal or informal
Did it work for you? And what were you secrets of success?
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