For many boat owners the biggest debate is between pre-owned or new boats for sale. Boat-Max wants to help you make the best choice for your lifestyle and budget with this handy guide to pre-owned vs new boats.

New Boats for sale!

When you are the first owner of a boat, you don’t have to worry about where the boat is coming from and its history as it is probably coming straight from the manufacturer. This also means that your new boat will be in perfect condition, have no problems and will come with the manufacturer’s warranty and dealers support if there happen to be any faults. A new boat is also great for those first time boat owners who want to be able to choose the exact design, layout, gear and style of his new investment.

But be aware that buying a new boat comes with some hazards too – when you test-drive a model that you are interested in buying new, you will not be sailing the exact boat that you will eventually get. Also, a new boat can take up to three weeks to get to you once you have paid for it as you may have to wait for it to be built and possibly shipped from somewhere else. A new boat also has a significant depreciation value as soon as you get it off the lot.

Used boats for sale!

The biggest difference for many people is in the price – pre-owned boats are generally a lot cheaper than a new boat of a similar model or make. Pre-owned boats are also a great option for those who are looking for a new project or who want to have their boat on the water as soon as possible. Many people love buying pre-owned boats and doing them up over the weekends themselves. Or, if you find a used boat that is already in great condition, you can pretty much have it on the water as soon as you have paid for it and gotten it seen to by a qualified marine surveyor. Another benefit is that when you are looking to buy a pre-owned boat, the boat that you test drive will generally be the exact boat that you buy. If you buy your used boat from a reputable dealer you can often build up a good relationship and have your boat serviced by them regularly.

Obviously there are some pitfalls to buying a pre-owned boat. Firstly, you may be unaware of the boat’s history (why is it being sold? What problems does it have? Has it been badly damaged and repaired before?) and could easily be buying another man’s problems. You are also only able to choose from the used boats already available – gear, equipment and style may be out-dated or you will have to settle for a layout that is not necessarily suited to your needs. If your boat is over three years old, chances are you will not be covered by the manufacturer’s warranty. If you are not the most mechanically-inclined then you might struggle with fixing and maintaining an older boat with more problems or you might have to spend more money on repairs and maintenance the older the boat gets and sooner than if you had to buy a new boat.