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Unread 30-07-2010, 08:35 PM   #1
mugachino
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Default Thinking of buying a live-aboard

Its seem to me that purchasing a nice live-aboard boat is cheaper then the stupid prices of housing atm! Also the fact that I spent the weekend on a ocean going cat which my mate lives aboard dosnt help at all (he is sick of the cold weather so is heading up to the Whitsundays till feb, what a hard life)

So this brings me to a dilema. I live by myself, 28, love boating and the water, hate the idea of being in debt for 20 years, and thinking that spending say 80-100K on a nice ride isnt that bad an idea at all - please chip in if you think it is though.

A quick browse through eBay, boatsales, and a couple of boating mags has shown that indeed you can purchase anything from a 25-35 footer, with flybridge, bearths, showers, head, galley, etc etc, and a lot are in the 50-80K range. That, plus the usual 10K that you spend on a boat when you get it (BOAT = Bring Out Another Thousand).

So say 70K for a boat + 10K for whatever, plus mooring (5K pa at brooklyn), and of course the annual antifoul (but iv heard that if you regulary go for a snorkle under the boat and get the growth off the hull the antifoul life can be extended??) and in a few years im debt free with a awesome ride which i live on. Sounds good, right?

So im after something thats comfortable and big enough to live on (dont want a houseboat as I would like to up anchors and head to where ever), shower, head, galley, a couple of berths, lounge area, large range tanks, genset, etc. But there are heaps of choices - Alaska, Bertram, Caribbean and the list goes on

Any recommendations? Are the people out there who do boat searches/inspections for you (for a cost i presume).

Any and all input will be appreciated.

Cheers,

Paul C
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Unread 30-07-2010, 09:45 PM   #2
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mate, i've already told the mrs that when the dogs pass on, we're not getting any new ones cause once the kids move out, i'm FU$%ED if i'm living in a house!!!!!

a mate of mine just sold his 32' Steber for $80k and it was a PEARLER!
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Unread 30-07-2010, 09:48 PM   #3
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Good, so it isnt just me that harbours the idea of living aboard a boat then

Wake up at 6, go to work, come back at 6 (if im lucky), throw a line out and have a beer, and come weekend time, fire up the beast and head out for the weekend. And come annual leave time, power up north to a couple of islands, where im sure i could entertain a backpacker or two
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Unread 30-07-2010, 11:14 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mugachino View Post
Good, so it isnt just me that harbours the idea of living aboard a boat then

Wake up at 6, go to work, come back at 6 (if im lucky), throw a line out and have a beer, and come weekend time, fire up the beast and head out for the weekend. And come annual leave time, power up north to a couple of islands, where im sure i could entertain a backpacker or two
Like the way your thinking mugachino. Take a good long thought before
you make the move because it aint all roses.
I say you only live once mate so if you can give it go why not.
because when your old you may regret not going with that dream.
I have friends that do it and they would not have it any other way.
If you need the boat scrubbed ill put you on to someone cheap, its a own little community once you get to know people on the water and
you find people are always willing to help.
If you need any help with recommendations in the harbour just pm
all the best with it.
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Unread 30-07-2010, 11:30 PM   #5
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Thanks Saltshaker.

Your right, one day i may look back at it and go why the hell didnt I do that. And if i get the boat that I want now, it will be easier on my health to get the boat now rather then wait till I have a ball and chain questioning everything that I do

I know that it wont be all peaches and cream, but if you live in a cocoon, whats the point?

PM sent re: harbour
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Unread 31-07-2010, 12:16 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by mugachino View Post
Thanks Saltshaker.

Your right, one day i may look back at it and go why the hell didnt I do that. And if i get the boat that I want now, it will be easier on my health to get the boat now rather then wait till I have a ball and chain questioning everything that I do

I know that it wont be all peaches and cream, but if you live in a cocoon, whats the point?

PM sent re: harbour
Thats right and dont worry about the ball and chain they can be easily
thrown overboard and replaced with a better model
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Unread 31-07-2010, 07:18 AM   #7
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go with your gut, wish i had many years ago, not that i'm regreting it by a long shot but hay!!!
Once worked with a guy that did it, he loved it
good luck with it Paul which way you go
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Unread 31-07-2010, 08:54 AM   #8
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In liveaboards your better of with an aftcabin.
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Unread 31-07-2010, 11:18 AM   #9
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Why is that Wiry?
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Unread 31-07-2010, 01:38 PM   #10
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NSW law is a mongrel so think north or west. Have trouble turning a blind eye like they used to and marinas can get into huge trouble. so much for the simple life

We looked at it in Berowra 10 yeras ago and were ready to buy but chose against it which was a good thing. The sailing cruising forums are a wealth of info in corect boat set up and what works.

Still gotta have a income. There is a few people doing it but a complaint can cause nightmares

I know a bloke who worked nightshift for years and did it and didn't get hassled as was only seen to be on the boat in the day

Cheap real estate at water only accessible shacks up the Hawksbury and you'd have alot of visitors from all of us on weekends!!!!!!

Good to have dreams - even better when reality lives up to em - look into it and see what you come up with
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Unread 31-07-2010, 02:03 PM   #11
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Its not exactly legal in NSW as I unerstand so look into it properly.
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Unread 31-07-2010, 02:58 PM   #12
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It's a bloody great idea but there are a few legal points to be addressed. Disturbances and a regular pressence at the marina while it is deserted in the night can cause issues. On top of that there are pollution laws in relation to your septic tank, it needs to be pumped correctly, not just dumped out at sea. Other issues such as clean water arise; where do you fill your water tanks up?

To deal with growth on the bottom is a bit of a nagging pain, anti-foul lasts at the best 9 months (unlike the original stuff which was lead-based paint and killed all and sundry); and going for a swim now and then to scrub the growth on it sucks (it is bad enough when the boat is out of water). Also to give you an idea of how quick growth builds up on an unprotected hull, signs of growth occur within a week with the mean water temp 22+ degrees.

With boat size, you would probably want a cabin that closes and can be locked. That means you may need to look at a certain size. I know that the Caribbean's (former bertrams)from 28foot down don't have doors on the cabin. Personally, I would look at somthing along the 32-36 foot size to be comfortable with decent bed and bathroom space.

One final note, the cheaper the second hand boat, the older the hull (general rule of thumb). This dosen't seem like a problem if the thing floats and a 30 year old 25ft Caribbean is a great hull, but what needs to be addressed are the motors (in the case of the above example, you would most likely need to replace them). These will cost a pretty penny alone. Older and discontinued boats will mean parts are harder to find and may need mods. to accomidate new additions (again mainly motors) as they do not suite.

But hey, if you can get passed the issues it would be awsome to do. I personally would love to do it, as would alot of other guys. Just take time to think it through, it's a pretty big move. I'm not try to have a dig at you and the idea, I'm just giving a bit of food for thought.

Also a final thought, if you do go ahead, install lighting around the hull under the waterline. Should never have a problem with finding squid for food or bait ever again.
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Unread 31-07-2010, 10:51 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wiry View Post
In liveaboards your better of with an aftcabin.
Would that be because of more living space aboard? I would like to keep some room at the back for fishing, entertaining etc as well, which is why I havnt really looked at aft cabins atm. But im still in the early stages of all of this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wonder Wobbler View Post
It's a bloody great idea but there are a few legal points to be addressed. Disturbances and a regular pressence at the marina while it is deserted in the night can cause issues. On top of that there are pollution laws in relation to your septic tank, it needs to be pumped correctly, not just dumped out at sea. Other issues such as clean water arise; where do you fill your water tanks up?

One final note, the cheaper the second hand boat, the older the hull (general rule of thumb). This dosen't seem like a problem if the thing floats and a 30 year old 25ft Caribbean is a great hull, but what needs to be addressed are the motors (in the case of the above example, you would most likely need to replace them). These will cost a pretty penny alone. Older and discontinued boats will mean parts are harder to find and may need mods. to accomidate new additions (again mainly motors) as they do not suite.
I know that the marina that my mate dad is at you have to pay an addidional $100/month if you live aboard, apart from that there are no issues. I know that there is also a pumpout facility at one of the marinas there as well, so hopefully that wont be a problem. And a lot of the marinas as well have taps/power outlets at each berth, so freshwater shouldnt be a problem either.

A couple of the boats that I have been looking at have just had their engines rebuilt, so I would be looking at something that hasnt done a lot of hours, or that has recently been rebuilt. ATM im stearing towards desiel engines (what do you guys think?) and something around the early 90's hull.

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Originally Posted by Bashir View Post
Its not exactly legal in NSW as I unerstand so look into it properly.
As in living aboard? Surely not, or has has government really trying to stuff us up. If so, its like Butcher said, so much for the simple life!
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Unread 01-08-2010, 01:07 PM   #14
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My personal view is that you have more room in the main cabin and in turn the galley etc to move around, particularly in a 36 to 42 footer where space can be at premium in forward cabin vessels. I also consider the aft cabin for a live aboard gets you away from the lapping on the hull, you more often than not get in a forward cabin along with privacy in the event you have others onboard.

I know the cockpit is raised giving not so easy access to the swim platform,unless you get a yatch fisher, but it's all a personal preferrence,comfort, practicality and enjoyment thing for the long term. Unlike a house if find you need a bit more room you extend, here you would need to upgrade, so getting it right is a tad more critical. The biggest problem, i would think, is to restrict yourself to a strict budget, because you will probably end up talking yourself into something that fits the budget and almost fits the purpose, rather than the other way around.

Some of the best livaboards i've seen have been converted trawlers.


As indicated, personal views only along with having spoken to permanent residence on boats.
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Unread 01-08-2010, 01:34 PM   #15
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You can't live aboard a swing mooring:
http://www.maritime.nsw.gov.au/docs/...conditions.pdf

To live on a marina berth legally you need the marina's and council's permission from memory and you need to make a bunch of legal submissions in regards to environmental impact etc... I could be wrong so your first stop would be to start ringing some marinas and see what they say.
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Unread 01-08-2010, 06:57 PM   #16
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As far as I know when I looked into this there is 3 or o 100% legal live aboard houseboats in Sydney. They are just the west side of the Spit bridge moored to the shore..

All others including marinas are done with a blind eye . I may be wrong and if you find out different please tell me. I know of several and I know they are good blokes and do a lot for the security of other moored boats in their area and many owners like myself drop in a bottle of wine and some fish or collect spares whe they need em.

There was a couple of people who rotate between boats as a way around the laws and others who do it for 11 months in nsw then into QLD at tweed to get another 11 months. They have crackdowns every now and again and you can see clusters or "ive aboard "boats for sale up the coast or in particular river systems.


Don't squash the dream - find away around it but don't get sold a pup for not doing your research.


PS budget between 2000-8000 and put a bag or seapen around it so you don't have to haul out antifould or scrape it annually.
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Unread 01-08-2010, 07:31 PM   #17
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ATM im not planning on a swing mooring, to be honest I cant see myself after a 12hr day having to row out to my home but then again later down the line I may after I realise how much cheaper it is!!

Im looking at marinas up at Brooklyn.

http://www.brooklynmarina.com.au/bro...ice%20Fees.pdf

From how I read it i will be up for $7200 pa in berth/liveaboard fees - a bit cheaper then renting. But that added to the annual upkeep it can add up to a pretty penny, but hopefully a lot of research and advice will save me some coin.

Brooklyn is about a 50min drive from my office (Newington, next to Homebush) and my hours of 6am starts and either 3pm or 6pm knockoff, i should miss out on the traffic. And to be honest, i dont mind driving, and driving in a Falcon is pure pleasure

Your right Butcher, i have also heard of Marinas letting it slide that people live aboard for the security aspect.

My current housesiting gig will end at the end of the year, so I have a bit of time for checking out boats/marinas etc etc.
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Unread 01-08-2010, 08:22 PM   #18
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Mate I used to keep my boat at brooklyn marina and there was a guy that lived on the wharf there in his boat. Give them a call, they may be ok with it.
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Unread 01-08-2010, 11:09 PM   #19
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Who has a big driveway they can lend you? Just park it up on a trailer!!!
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Unread 01-08-2010, 11:11 PM   #20
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as long as they dont mind a Falcon in the driveway and a bourbon drinker it could be a match made in heaven!
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