Used Boat Market: The Strong, Silent Type

Nothing sells like new. I’ve heard that time again, usually from guys I know in the boat business. They’re right, of course. New models get the press, the attention, the love, and the sales hype compared with older models.

New boats are nice, but used boats outsell new models by a wide margin. Photo Courtesy of Inland Auto and Boat.

New boats are nice, but used boats outsell new models by a wide margin. Photo Courtesy of Inland Auto and Boat.

Of course, they’re also wrong. Used boats have always outsold new boats. Back in 2007, that ratio was about three to one, according the National Marine Manufacturers Association, which is a figure they’ve been trying to change as the economy lumbers back to life. (The boat business is the first to suffer in a recession and the last to come back.)

In 2012, according to the Discover Boating (quoting NMMA figures), over 160,000 new boats were sold, while there were estimated used boat sales of 960,000. That’s a ratio of almost six to one.

So, if you’re here  at BoatTrader.com studying a purchase, you’re far from alone, and you’re in great company. Buying a used boat takes patience and time — in some instances a lot of time. I’ve read about people taking up to two years to find just the right used boat, and they didn’t even own one at the time. That means two whole boating seasons went by while they were shopping. It also means dedication and great research on their part, and shows fun it can be to pore over boat listings online, learning as you go and taking your time to make a dream come true.

BoatTrader.com is glad to help. Happy hunting.

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