When is the Best Time to Buy a Boat?

In previous articles, we've delved deeply into the process of buying a boat, from sea trials to financing and insurance. However, determining the best time to buy a boat is a whole different story. The truth is, there is no bad time to buy a boat if it feels right for you and you're prepared to take on the responsibility. Nonetheless, the seasons do play a significant role in the boat buying and selling industry, and you'll find advantages and disadvantages of buying in each season. Let's take a closer look at the best time to buy a boat.

The current boat buying market is experiencing unprecedented demand for both new and used boats, leading to increased prices and creating backlogs for new boat deliveries and limited stock in the used boat market. Whereas in the past, different seasons may have presented opportunities to find discounts or lower prices, with the current demand, that's unlikely.

Will boat prices decrease in 2022 and 2023? The current trend indicates that the answer is no, and manufacturers currently have full order books for many models. So, is it a bad time to buy a boat? The answer is no, because there are still opportunities to be taken advantage of, particularly in the used boat market. Buyers will need to be prepared, financially ready, and act swiftly when the perfect boat becomes available for sale.

When discussing the best time to buy a boat, several factors need to be considered before examining the best time of the year.

Buying a Boat in Spring and Summer

The warmer months of spring and summer may have you feeling fully invested in buying a boat, with the sun shining and the sea calling. It's understandable to feel the urge to venture into boat ownership during this time. However, in most parts of the world, the summer months of July and August are generally considered the worst months to buy a boat. High demand causes prices to skyrocket, and even in the current high-demand climate, prices continue to peak. The chance of finding an available boat for sale diminishes, especially with new boats, as any remaining stock from winter and spring quickly disappears. The used boat market is also at its peak demand, leading to higher prices. Another factor to consider when buying a boat in the summer is that professionals such as mechanics, engineers, shipyards, marine surveyors, or sailmakers may have limited availability due to busyness or vacation. Spring may be more favorable as the peak of demand hasn't quite hit, but there's a risk of not having enough time to prepare before summer arrives. If you're lucky enough to find the perfect turn-key used boat, there's nothing stopping you from purchasing it just in time for summer.

Buying a Boat in Autumn and Winter

Autumn typically marks the end of the summer boating season and brings along numerous boat shows that continue into the winter season. In the past, demand would have decreased during this time, and new boat discounts could be found. Nowadays, that's unlikely. However, manufacturers reveal their latest models at boat shows during this time. This presents an opportunity to get on the list for the newest boats hitting the market, leading to an increase in the number of boats available in the used market as other boat owners upgrade. This is a good time to start searching, with plenty of time during the winter and spring to get everything ready, take your time, and familiarize yourself with your boat.

When to Buy a New Boat

For those looking for the latest boat models, the autumn and winter months are the best time. Boat shows are where new launches are revealed to great anticipation from the boating industry. Whether you're looking for a skiff, a weekend motor cruiser, or a large superyacht, visiting regional or international boat shows and spending time with boat dealers, comparing models, and gathering specifications is the way to go. Some models may have a long waiting period, especially if you're customizing from the base model, but you'll have a delivery date and know when to expect your dream boat.

When to Buy a Second-Hand Boat

Purchasing a used boat provides more flexibility, although seasonal demands are still relevant. Keeping a close eye on the used boat market is crucial, as you never know when the perfect boat will become available. Utilizing online marketplaces to enter specific search parameters and receive alerts for new listings is important. Buying a used boat in autumn or winter provides extra time to prepare for the high boating season.

Buy When it Feels Right

Ultimately, the perfect boat may unexpectedly appear, and if it feels right, go for it! Boating is a leisure activity, and even the buying process should be enjoyable. While it's a significant investment and you want to make the right decision, if you've done your research, know what you want, can afford the price and upkeep, and your heart is urging you to do it, then the right time to buy a boat is now. Rightboat.com is a leading online boat buying marketplace with hundreds of new and used boats worldwide. With user-friendly search tools and helpful customer support, it ensures that you're at the forefront of finding the perfect boat.

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