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Old 07-16-2019, 09:19 PM
 
142 posts, read 25,482 times
Reputation: 135

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I'm obviously missing something, but don't see what exactly.

I was recently looking for the boats while chatting with my wife about life, retirement etc, and all of a sudden we got this idea: why not to buy some boat with enough living space, and retire there instead of the house?

Here are the pros: the good-enough used boat of ocean class with living quarters can be had for about 100K. After that (sales tax paid) the only expense would be Florida registration fee (about $160 a YEAR), slip fees (can be found as low as $200/month), some fund for ongoing maintenance/repairs, electricity and fuel. For our current house we would have to pay ~$1000/month just for taxes and HOA; add on top of that electricity, water, pest control and maintenance, and SS is basically toast. So financially, it should be much more feasible to live on the boat. Another plus - you can travel around the world, but that is very expensive (~4000 gals of diesel from Florida to Spain); on another hand, if we'll cruise only around North and South America, then expenses should be on par with air tickets cost without all the air travel hassles.

The only negative that I see - being far from medical help while in ocean (which I don't think will happen often anyway).

What else am I missing? I sure miss something, otherwise everyone would do that.
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Old 07-16-2019, 09:43 PM
 
Location: Montana
1,754 posts, read 1,660,226 times
Reputation: 5961
My aunt and uncle had a large sailboat after they retired, and spent winters in the Caribbean Islands, and returned home to summer in their permanent home.

It worked great for a decade, but they "aged out" of being able to handle the physical requirements of sailing. Space on the boat was limited - and anything in the $100,000 range will be tight living quarters.

I suspect it would work while you are a "young retiree" and would have the potential for many adventures, but I think you need to have an exit strategy for age or health issues that preclude living on a boat.
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Old 07-16-2019, 09:49 PM
 
Location: Montana
1,754 posts, read 1,660,226 times
Reputation: 5961
While you didn't ask about this, it seems more common to buy a motor home or travel trailer and live in it. I know a lot of seniors in my area living in 30+ foot travel trailers or large Class A motorhomes. $100,000 would get you a decent to very nice rig, and has similar benifits to the boat tax and mobility wise. Just an additional option to consider...
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Old 07-16-2019, 10:01 PM
 
142 posts, read 25,482 times
Reputation: 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tuck's Dad View Post
While you didn't ask about this, it seems more common to buy a motor home or travel trailer and live in it. I know a lot of seniors in my area living in 30+ foot travel trailers or large Class A motorhomes. $100,000 would get you a decent to very nice rig, and has similar benifits to the boat tax and mobility wise. Just an additional option to consider...
I was thinking about it, but here is the difference - when living in motor home/travel trailer you rarely have a decent place to park. Parking places are either outrageously expensive, or are in [expletive deleted] areas. Basically, no different than living in some 50K home - same expenses, but area is horrible.

For the boat, on another hand, you would be hard pressed to find sh.tty area for parking (i.e. slip).

Ok, just thought up another negative about living on boat - how to travel on land after docking? Car rentals can eat up all savings, and used boat for 100K cannot accommodate the car, however small. Well.. except may be the "Smart" car? That one looks tiny. Any other ideas?

Last edited by volosong; 07-16-2019 at 10:22 PM..
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Old 07-16-2019, 10:05 PM
 
142 posts, read 25,482 times
Reputation: 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tuck's Dad View Post
My aunt and uncle had a large sailboat after they retired, and spent winters in the Caribbean Islands, and returned home to summer in their permanent home.

It worked great for a decade, but they "aged out" of being able to handle the physical requirements of sailing. Space on the boat was limited - and anything in the $100,000 range will be tight living quarters.

I suspect it would work while you are a "young retiree" and would have the potential for many adventures, but I think you need to have an exit strategy for age or health issues that preclude living on a boat.
I guess by the time we have health issues that will prevent boat living we can as well sell the boat and live in any area, even [expletive deleted] one. Or go strait to nursing home - I guess we just wouldn't care by then. Geez, I hate to even think about being in that condition

Last edited by volosong; 07-16-2019 at 10:25 PM..
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Old 07-16-2019, 10:08 PM
 
Location: Lone Mountain Las Vegas NV
12,980 posts, read 4,905,298 times
Reputation: 5739
Quote:
Originally Posted by kanonka View Post
I'm obviously missing something, but don't see what exactly.

I was recently looking for the boats while chatting with my wife about life, retirement etc, and all of a sudden we got this idea: why not to buy some boat with enough living space, and retire there instead of the house?

Here are the pros: the good-enough used boat of ocean class with living quarters can be had for about 100K. After that (sales tax paid) the only expense would be Florida registration fee (about $160 a YEAR), slip fees (can be found as low as $200/month), some fund for ongoing maintenance/repairs, electricity and fuel. For our current house we would have to pay ~$1000/month just for taxes and HOA; add on top of that electricity, water, pest control and maintenance, and SS is basically toast. So financially, it should be much more feasible to live on the boat. Another plus - you can travel around the world, but that is very expensive (~4000 gals of diesel from Florida to Spain); on another hand, if we'll cruise only around North and South America, then expenses should be on par with air tickets cost without all the air travel hassles.

The only negative that I see - being far from medical help while in ocean (which I don't think will happen often anyway).

What else am I missing? I sure miss something, otherwise everyone would do that.
The ocean is not always a friendly place. I happen to love it...I am (or was) quite at home in a 40 foot boat with waves breaking over the boat and filling the cockpit. 30 seconds of water to your waist and then it drains. And you wait for the next. It can be better in a power hull...but not always. It is nice to stwy dry but lose power and it gets messy real fast.

Can you wiggle on your back at 3AM and replace the works in a pump that has given out at the wrong time. 500 miles off shore you don't call a service boat.

And don't take the medical thing lightly we were a couple of hundred miles off the Mexican coast heading south but the skipper had gone to sea sick one day out and was not keeping anything down after three days...we were about to decide it was an emergency and head for the nearest harbor. If he got any worse we were going to call the coast guard and see if the US or Mexican Coast Guard would pull him off. We were saved by a couple of Scopolamine patches buried for three or four years in the bottom of a ditty bag...but they worked.

So are you up to all that? You can do the boat bit and stay close to services...but it takes s good bit of the fun out.

My wife and I strongly considered doing it and likely would have for a while. But I had an ankle go and my heart got tricky. So it was not workable. I had to be at 100% or it would not work. Still shed tears late at night over it. I do like it out on the deep blue.
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Old 07-16-2019, 10:08 PM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
18,134 posts, read 23,045,598 times
Reputation: 35392
Electric bikes for getting around maybe?

The first thing I thought of as a con would be weather. What if there's a storm where you are moored and you're trying to eat your dinner or sleep and the boat is rocking like crazy.
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Old 07-16-2019, 10:30 PM
 
142 posts, read 25,482 times
Reputation: 135
Quote:
Originally Posted by lvmensch View Post
The ocean is not always a friendly place. I happen to love it...I am (or was) quite at home in a 40 foot boat with waves breaking over the boat and filling the cockpit. 30 seconds of water to your waist and then it drains. And you wait for the next. It can be better in a power hull...but not always. It is nice to stwy dry but lose power and it gets messy real fast.

Can you wiggle on your back at 3AM and replace the works in a pump that has given out at the wrong time. 500 miles off shore you don't call a service boat.

And don't take the medical thing lightly we were a couple of hundred miles off the Mexican coast heading south but the skipper had gone to sea sick one day out and was not keeping anything down after three days...we were about to decide it was an emergency and head for the nearest harbor. If he got any worse we were going to call the coast guard and see if the US or Mexican Coast Guard would pull him off. We were saved by a couple of Scopolamine patches buried for three or four years in the bottom of a ditty bag...but they worked.

So are you up to all that? You can do the boat bit and stay close to services...but it takes s good bit of the fun out.

My wife and I strongly considered doing it and likely would have for a while. But I had an ankle go and my heart got tricky. So it was not workable. I had to be at 100% or it would not work. Still shed tears late at night over it. I do like it out on the deep blue.
I'm pretty handy to fix things, but I don't think we would venture far into ocean much anyway. May be like 2-3 times for all retirement, but mostly sail along the coast to be on a safe side, or simply be docked for almost all the time and take occasional sail 10 miles max away from the coast. And that would solve medical issue too.

But I hear you about losing power. Does it happen often? How water gets into living quarter if power is out? Can power be duplicated/retrofitted?
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Old 07-16-2019, 11:09 PM
 
Location: Tucson AZ & Leipzig, Germany
2,392 posts, read 7,775,058 times
Reputation: 3614
In Germany, Netherlands and many parts of France, there is a big network of interconnected rivers and canals. Big, meaning tens of thousands of kilometers. I have stopped and chatted with people who live on long, narrow canal boats. They are shaped like a large travel trailer inside, but of course built on a very sturdy canal boat. Unlike RVs, the craftmanship on the interior of these canal boats is incredible, usually with beautiful hardwoods. They have bicycles or mopeds on board for land transportation when they are docked. I have no idea how many people live on these boats, but I know the rental business for canal boats is really good in the nice weather months (Apr-Sept), because reservations are needed many months in advance.
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Old 07-16-2019, 11:27 PM
 
6,317 posts, read 4,762,537 times
Reputation: 12973
Quote:
Originally Posted by recycled View Post
In Germany, Netherlands and many parts of France, there is a big network of interconnected rivers and canals. Big, meaning tens of thousands of kilometers. I have stopped and chatted with people who live on long, narrow canal boats. .......
My wife has relatives who have been doing this for years. They have traveled througout much of Europe living on a small house boat. Apparently it is actually inexpensive. They spend a great deal of time in Paris on the Seine. My wife visited and spent a week or so with them.
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