Dock Talk: Season to sell and buy boats is here

An increase in used boat prices has prompted some boat owners to sell their boats this fall in preparation for a new purchase this winter or upcoming spring.

Now is a good time to buy and sell boats to allow enough time to take advantage of factory-offered incentives and do the research necessary to find the perfect watercraft to suit your needs before spring. Submitted photo

An increase in used boat prices has prompted some boat owners to sell their boats this fall in preparation for a new purchase this winter or upcoming spring.

List prices for used boats have increased due to an increased demand for previously owned vessels.

Private boat sellers have realized they can capitalize on a strong market and premium return for used boats, a subdued market with great pricing for new boat purchases and the ability to take advantage of low annual percentage rates on loans.

In other words, now is a great time to sell your boat.

Once the selling process is complete, the fun begins. You get to buy a new boat.


Purchasing a boat is much different versus buying an automobile, since a vehicle typically plays an integral role in the owner's day-to-day operations. A vehicle is nearly essential in sustaining a job and providing family support. When one malfunctions and must ultimately be replaced, a quick purchase is imperative to not upset the well-oiled cog of life.

When someone gets the opportunity to buy a boat, there is usually much more time available to research, compare and figure out the best boat that falls within the buyers price bracket.

A good time to look at purchasing a new boat from a dealer is during the fall and winter, even though the majority of people are turning their thoughts toward hunting and ice fishing. Yet boat dealers with current year models in their fleet would prefer to move out the current models to minimize overhead as new year models arrive.

Not to mention, boat and engine manufacturers often offer some great incentives for buying during a time when boat sales are a second thought for many people.

Though spring might seem like the logical time to sell or buy, fall and winter offers greater incentives and time to decide.

Keep in mind that this doesn't mean you should stop into a boat dealership and ask a sales associate to write down every option you want and spend hours with you in the boat when you really only want to peruse what's available.

It's good to go through a boat, look it over bow to stern and decide if it's the right model for you.

But leading the dealership down a misleading path isn't fair either. If you'd like more information on the model, its construction, warranties, options and pricing, ask a sales associate to assist, but realize that the way they make a living is through sales. They will do everything possible to get you into the right boat model to fit your needs at a good price.


But if you're more interested in seeing several boats versus actually buying one, don't go through the financial paperwork only to say it's not going to work.

If you do decide to buy a boat and had a good experience, stick with that dealer. The relationship is valuable for service, repair and possibly another great experience for a future purchase.

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