Buying a used sailboat is more complicated than buying a new one, but usually less expensive and often reading for sailing without additional upgrade costs. Here are some tips to help you get started.
Evaluate your needs.
Will you be sailing in freshwater or saltwater? Cold waters or warm? Are there height limiting restrictions such as bridges in your area? How many people will be sailing with you? Your needs determine what kind of sailboat you should be looking for.
Research models and manufacturers.
There are dozens and dozens of sailboat manufacturers. Create a list of models that accommodate your needs. Read what other boat owners have to say about specific models. This will winnow down all the available choices.
Use a broker.
An experienced sailboat broker will help you assess your needs, filter through available options, and handle all the legal and financial legwork for you.
When you have found a few different boats you are interested in, compare their customizations and upgrades.
Hire a surveyor or inspector.
An older boat may have hidden problems. Make sure you are aware of anything that needs to be fixed or upgraded.