Yacht-Match’s quick guide on how to buy a boat

Are you thinking of buying that dreamboat of yours? Then we believe you will find this article very useful. Let’s go through our quick guide on how to buy a boat!

A boat is a significant investment. It’s more comparable to buying a house than a car or another luxury product. Therefore, take your time and do your research correctly.

Figure out what you’re looking for before making any hasty decisions. What you want might be different from what you need. Also, it’s easy to get carried away, so remember to keep your budget in mind.

Here’s a quick guide on how to buy a boat to get you started on the process:

Choosing the type of boat

When choosing the boat type, consider how and where you will be using it.

Are you going to cross oceans or enjoy the day out on a lake? Are you going to spend a few nights here and there or live more extended periods on the boat?

Are the primary reasons for the purchase, leisurely cruising and entertaining guests? Or perhaps all kinds of water activities with your family and friends?

Answers to these questions will determine whether you should choose a motorboat, a sailing monohull or a catamaran, as well as what size and equipment would suit you best.

In addition, you should consider if you are going to charter the boat or have it for your own use. Some boat types and configurations are more suitable for chartering than others.

You should also consider if you are going to charter the boat or have it for your use. Some boat types and configurations are more suitable for chartering than others.

Buying new or used boat?

There is no single right answer to this question since both options have their pros and cons.

Initially, you could save up money buying a used boat. There are a lot of used boats available for much less than the same models are new.

Besides, second-hand boats are usually available immediately. If you’re looking for a new project and like fixing and customising – a used boat could be just perfect for you.

Talking about fixing, the risk of hidden problems is much higher with a used boat. There are many essential systems, compartments and equipment that are hard to see and might lead to severe future issues.

Some examples of these are electrical and engine issues, leaking and rot.

Make sure to survey the boat properly and most importantly, go for a sea trial. You’ll get a much better grasp of the condition when testing the vessel.

What comes to new boats – well, they’re new.

There’s nothing like the look and feel of a new car or a new boats. The smell, the shiny finish and no previous damages or the above-mentioned hidden problems. Also, with a new boat you get warranty.

Furthermore, when you’re buying a new boat, you get to choose among the latest designs, styles and features. You also have the chance to customise the layout, add optional equipment and choose your preferred materials and colours.

On the other hand, new boats are expensive, and there are often long delivery times. Do you want to head out sailing now or are you willing to wait?

Browsing your options

Once you have a better idea of what type of boat you are looking for, we recommend you start browsing online. You can compare models and prices, and search boats based on brand, type, size, location and other characteristics.

Make sure to check listings on different websites, compare photos of similar boats and get a feel of the overall business, if browsing on dealers’ sites.

Check the highlights of the main features and read reviews. If you’re a first-time boat buyer or have a hard time making the decision, don’t hesitate to get help and talk to a boat broker.

When you have narrowed down your options and found a few boats that you like, go see them in person. Visit a marina close to you or better, attend a boat show.

At boat shows, you can have a tour of the boat and ask experts and boat owners all the questions you have. Don’t forget to take pictures and notes to show your family and to help making the decision!

Inspecting the boat

Surveying the boat is necessary before buying – you want to know what you’ll get and avoid unpleasant surprises. The inspection is critical with used boats, but you should do it properly with new ones too.

Never settle for what the seller tells and shows you. This is a major investment, so it’s better to dig deeper. Start with a walk-around and then arrange a sea trial to see how the boat feels like.

We recommend hiring a surveyor to be sure nothing the boat is checked thoroughly!

Making the purchase

You’ve finally found the boat you like, and now you’re ready to sign the papers. Before you do, make sure to read the paperwork carefully. Be aware of what’s included in the deal and what’s not. Be prepared for possible extras later on.

Moreover, if you are buying from a private person, double check that the owner actually owns the boat and if there are any outstanding bills.

When you’ve checked everything looks good, sign the papers and congratulations – you’re about to enjoy a new lifestyle as a boat owner!

Do you want to read more about the different ways of financing your yacht? Read our in-depth guide on how to do so and get all the information you possibly need to buy a yacht in charter!


Before you head off researching your future yacht, we have the last reminder for you. Owning a boat is not a hobby; it’s a lifestyle. You need to like sailing and be able to do it often.

Owning a yacht can still make your dreams become a reality. You cannot truly enjoy freedom until you are sailing into the sunset with the boat of your dreams. There’s not much that can beat that feeling!

How can we help you?

get our unbiased advice today!

Yacht-Match is an informative and educational platform to advice and guide anyone interested in buying a boat in charter.

With your interest and preference in mind you are able to receive a personal and tailored version of the traditional charter ownership programs and the financing required from our professional and unbiased approach and network.

The Yacht-Match Network consist of connection of +40 regional yacht dealers and +14 specialised financial institutes.

The majority of the renowned European ship yards together with a few selected independent charter operators, serves the purpose of supplying our boat owners with a more individual and tailored customised version of the traditional charter ownership.

Would You Like To Try The Boat Before You Buy It?

We understand that there is a lot to consider in your planning phase to become a yacht owner or join a charter ownership. That is why, as part of the Yacht-Matching, we offer you the best introduction possible to your new lifestyle.

We arrange a charter week with your chosen yacht and the operator that we have matched to your preferences. The price of the chartered week is deducted from the final yacht offer.

Sign up today and take the first steps on your journey towards your dreamboat!

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