An Overview of the Costs of Yacht Ownership

To compare the different yacht ownership options, it is important to first understand the types of costs involved in buying and maintaining a yacht.

The Purchase Price #

The initial outlay required to buy a yacht is the largest single expense. The cost of buying a new yacht ranges from anywhere between €100,000 for a medium sized family cruising monohull to €1,000,000 for a larger catamaran and many millions for a top of the range superyacht.

The purchase price will reflect not only the size and style of the yacht but also the reputation of the manufacturer and yacht designer, what level of equipment is selected and whether the buyer chooses standard or customised options for layout, accessories and equipment.

On-Going Costs #

There are a number of on-going costs, some are optional but many will be essential.

Berthing: Berthing fees are the cost of storing a yacht. This may be on a mooring buoy, in a marina or on a dry-stack. Berths which can be accessed from shore (such as walk-ashore pontoons) and at all states of tide attract a premium price.

Insurance: Yachts require a specialist marine insurance. The annual premiums will reflect the berthing type and intended use as well as the value of the yacht.

Maintenance: Boats need regular maintenance in order to remain safe and trouble-free. This includes regular servicing of all moving parts and engine servicing. Safety equipment will also need to be serviced to ensure it will work correctly if deployed.

Repair: In addition to planned maintenance, there are the costs of wear and tear, damages and losses to consider.

Sails: On a sailing yacht there is also the additional cost of sails; purchase and repair / replacement. Racing yachts tend to require a larger wardrobe of sails which are more frequently in need to repair.

A generally accepted guide is that a yacht costs 7-10% of its purchase price every year to operate.

Coding: For yachts which are used commercially, which includes taking paying passengers, chartering the boat out or for use as a workboat, there are additional requirements. These requirements vary by country, but most require some form of legal commercial registration and additional safety equipment. In Red Ensign territories (such as the UK) this process is known as ‘coding’.