Buying a Used Houseboat
When you have decided that houseboat ownership is for you, buying a brand new one may not be possible for you. This could because of money or because you are unable to be financed for one. Since those problems happen quite often, here are some tips for you when buying a used houseboat. This will give you some inside information, so you are not taken advantage of or scammed.
Buying a used houseboat can be rather scary especially if it is your first houseboat. Just as we spend time checking over a “bricks and mortar” house or used car, we need to do the same for a houseboat. A full inspection of the outside is a must. Check for any type of rust, mildew, or mold. Look for chips or cracks in paints and seals. If you see any of these be rather suspicious of the whole boat. If the owner is unable to properly clean or maintain the outside appearance of the houseboat, then what does the engine or inner workings look like? Always check for weak spots in paneling especially if you see any type of water damage. Water damage on the surface may appear as just cosmetic concerns, but the water may have done damage internally. Repairing something of this caliber would be rather expensive and time consuming.
If you are not an expert on houseboats it is best to get an expert to survey the boat for you. Make sure that they are experienced specifically in houseboats. There are many problems that can occur with a houseboat with regards to the engine and hull. These areas will need to be looked at carefully to see if something is not working properly.
Always take the houseboat out for a ride. If for some reason the seller does not allow this, then I would move onto other boats. It could mean something is seriously wrong with the boat, which the owner is trying to hide from you. Try out the steering and shifting of the houseboat to ensure that it works at all speeds. This would be a great time to look for any type of leaks inside the houseboat. Check the carpets for any mildew by smelling them. It is not exactly the most pleasant idea, but you do not want to buy a trashed houseboat.
Never feel rushed into the sale by the owner. After all repairs and problems are documented, do a lot of research for the amount of money the houseboat is worth. Check to see exactly how much these repairs will cost you. Always get a surveyor that is hired by you, so he or she is checking the boat in your interests. Good luck with your search of a used houseboat and in no time you will be cruising around with the sun in your face.