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Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 8:40am

Post Subject: Renting a live aboard?

Hi, We are interested in buying a live aboard boat, but want to try it out for a year before taking the plunge with our money. Is there any way we can rent to buy, or just rent for a year? Thanks, Ginga


Posted: Fri Jun 24, 2011 11:31am

Post Subject: Renting a live aboard?

I note that you do not specify what type of boat you are thinking of, narrowboat, wide beam narrowboat style, cruiser etc. Personally I doubt you will find someone to hire for a year and you will then have to contend with the difficulty of finding a suitable mooring if you are still working. You can not just tie up to the bank for months at a time on BW waters. If you search around you may well find a few hire fleets that would be happy to hire you a boat during the winter at a reduced rate or possibly hire one that they were selling out of the fleet but I suspect this would cost many thousands of pounds (let alone the mooring costs). In any case there are so many variations in design that the usually advice is to hire as many boats as possible, during the colder & wetter months, so you can find out which layouts suit you. I suspect the cheapest way to do what you want is to buy a cheap boat with a new BSS certificate and then sell it once you know if it will work for you. If the economy picks up while you are trying it you may even make a small profit, but even if you did make a loss it would almost certainly be far less than hiring/renting. Please take great care over websites that appear to offer such rentals. I am sure some are perfectly legitimate BUT ...... Have you worked out what the running expenses will be? IF you need to be in one place for work it is usually reckoned that living on a boat is no cheaper than living ashore with the boat being a lifestyle rather than economic choice. Proper residential moorings are hard to find and expensive - especially around the major conurbations. Many people do live cheaply on boast but they tend to ignore BW regulations and a recent court case may well make this way of going on rather more difficult - some could well loose their boats if they do not start to play by the rules. Tony Brooks

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