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Old 08-04-2009, 11:23 AM
 
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I've often dreamed of living on a houseboat in one of the many bays on the Gulf side. Tampa-Longboat, Sanibel-Pines seem ideal. Do many couples (w/o kids, of course) choose this lifestyle in those areas. Where is the most popular area in Fla for this kind of lifestyle?
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Old 08-04-2009, 11:57 AM
 
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Originally Posted by thrillobyte View Post
I've often dreamed of living on a houseboat in one of the many bays on the Gulf side. Tampa-Longboat, Sanibel-Pines seem ideal. Do many couples (w/o kids, of course) choose this lifestyle in those areas. Where is the most popular area in Fla for this kind of lifestyle?
I sounds better then it is. Forget the old "Surf side six" show. With new laws that don't permit you to use on board toilets you can't just dock it anywhere you usually need to be in a marina. Docking rates can be really high, $1000.00 a month or more. Then there is constant and often expensive up keep not to mention they don't survive storms unless moved to safe shelter. They are very hard to move and usually have to be towed by a professional, again expensive. Key west had an area with a lot of house boats a while back. One storm sunk them all, not one was above the water when I went to look. My cousin lives on a 50 foot sail boat and cruses the islands full time. He loves it but I have gone on trips with him and I can tell you, boat living gets old real quick. In most cases you can't actually go anywhere with a house boat. It is essentially a floating trailer. All things being equal I would much prefer living in an RV. At least you can do something with it. I traveled in an RV on and off for several years. It was really fun.
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Old 08-04-2009, 12:42 PM
 
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Originally Posted by mango23 View Post
I sounds better then it is. Forget the old "Surf side six" show. With new laws that don't permit you to use on board toilets you can't just dock it anywhere you usually need to be in a marina. Docking rates can be really high, $1000.00 a month or more. Then there is constant and often expensive up keep not to mention they don't survive storms unless moved to safe shelter. They are very hard to move and usually have to be towed by a professional, again expensive. Key west had an area with a lot of house boats a while back. One storm sunk them all, not one was above the water when I went to look. My cousin lives on a 50 foot sail boat and cruses the islands full time. He loves it but I have gone on trips with him and I can tell you, boat living gets old real quick. In most cases you can't actually go anywhere with a house boat. It is essentially a floating trailer. All things being equal I would much prefer living in an RV. At least you can do something with it. I traveled in an RV on and off for several years. It was really fun.
Thank you for snapping me out of lala land and back into reality.
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Old 08-04-2009, 01:10 PM
 
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Yes, I was going to bring up you having to constantly have your toilet pumped out ...but if you cant have an onboard toilet then youre cooked ! I dont think youd want to cheat and have a small Porta-Potty onboard and having to get rid of the waste regularly ., or, having to find a restaurant/gas station/public washroom each time you dock. Then...what about you putting on your makeup when the water is choppy ; you might look pretty scary after just the eyebrow liner is applied ! lol.....lol......still lol......
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Old 08-04-2009, 01:24 PM
 
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Originally Posted by RVlover View Post
Yes, I was going to bring up you having to constantly have your toilet pumped out ...but if you cant have an onboard toilet then youre cooked ! I dont think youd want to cheat and have a small Porta-Potty onboard and having to get rid of the waste regularly ., or, having to find a restaurant/gas station/public washroom each time you dock. Then...what about you putting on your makeup when the water is choppy ; you might look pretty scary after just the eyebrow liner is applied ! lol.....lol......still lol......
Just the thought of those choppy waters!! Why do we tend to see everything that tickles our fancy with rose-colored glasses????
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Old 08-05-2009, 09:21 AM
 
Location: Punta Gorda and Maryland
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Originally Posted by thrillobyte View Post
Just the thought of those choppy waters!! Why do we tend to see everything that tickles our fancy with rose-colored glasses????
It is a wonderful laid back style, and it is also the cheapest waterfront property you can buy!
I think you can rent boat slips all around SWFL very inexpensively right now! Look up prices of waterfront property and divide the cost per foot. Then take the perimeter of you boat, and divide that cost per foot. I think that boat living is pretty darn affordable. Plus you can move from neighborhood to neighborhood!
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Old 08-05-2009, 09:53 AM
 
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Well, maybe along the St. John River in Jacksonville. I saw a houseboat program on TLC once which showed some houseboats sailing the St John. The waters there would not be choppy and further down the river it gets into some undeveloped area, much like many of the lakes and rivers inland. It definitely has its pluses eg no property taxes; rarely do hurricanes hit Jacksonville; different view each morning. Are there dangers like other boats running into you and intruders boarding during night hours?
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Old 08-05-2009, 10:02 AM
 
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I often visit friends who live on a boat on the Alafia River. They've been at the Inter-Bay Marina in Gibsonton for 6 years. They live a simple lifestyle and enjoy that, but they hate the hurricane warnings and storms.
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Old 08-05-2009, 01:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by thrillobyte View Post
Well, maybe along the St. John River in Jacksonville. I saw a houseboat program on TLC once which showed some houseboats sailing the St John. The waters there would not be choppy and further down the river it gets into some undeveloped area, much like many of the lakes and rivers inland. It definitely has its pluses eg no property taxes; rarely do hurricanes hit Jacksonville; different view each morning. Are there dangers like other boats running into you and intruders boarding during night hours?
What you are describing is not a house boat. You are now talking about living aboard a boat. I had a friend who lived aboard and went from The Keys to the north US often never going outside the Intercostal water way back and forth. That is different then a houseboat that may be 800 sq. feet, up and down stairs that is like a small house on water that can't be moved anywhere without being towed. I mentioned my cousin lives full time on his sailboat and goes from island to island. I should mention he knew very little about boats when he started. He just did it. He was pretty young when he retired from the computer industry then his wife of 30 years died within 2 years of him retiring. He just chucked everything and bought the boat. This is a guy who you would before have described as a Jet setter. Now he is a tan shirtless vagabond like something out of a movie. He has a website he post to with pictures to keep us all informed what he is doing. I hope he is happy, hard to tell.
I had to comeback and add this about my intercostal crushing friend. This is not a guy who is rich or has yacht. He has a small I would guess about 27 foot Bertram with a small forward cabin. He goes all over the place with the boat. Pretty cool if you think about it.
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Old 08-05-2009, 01:25 PM
 
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Well, this one guy in Jacksonville lived on a refitted riverboat. It was pretty snazzy--all the trimmings, even a small movie theatre--four bedrooms w/ baths. Looked like a nice house. You'd never know it was a boat from the inside.
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