Author Topic: Boat Clubs  (Read 2066 times)

Non-RedNeck Westsider

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Boat Clubs
« on: June 29, 2019, 10:18:04 PM »
So I'm looking for some advice.   

I have recently gotten bitten from the boating bug again.  My family owned boats.  I owned one through my mid 20's .  I love boats and being on the water, but don't ever want to have to deal with the maintenance issues that come with one. 

FF 20ish years and I'm tossing the idea around again, but this time rather than plunking down $60k into a giant hole in the water that I might recoup a little less than half back after I'm over it in 4-5 years; I'm thinking about helping someone fund their kid's college by plunking down about $25k over 4-5 years without actually ever owning anything (boat related maintenance headaches included).

Do any of you here have any experience with a Freedom Boat Club or Care-Free Boat Club?  I've toured both, and they both have some pros and cons.  But before I stroke a check for initiation, I'd like to solicit some advise from some people who aren't trying to sell me anything.

Ready?  Go!
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acme54321

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Re: Boat Clubs
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2019, 10:54:41 PM »
As a previous owner, are you sure the boat club is for you?  Yeah it's hassle free but then all of the benefits of owning aren't there.  Plus, modern outboards are way more reliable and less maintenance intensive than old two strokes.  Personally, I'd prefer a gently used boat for $30-40k than giving the boat club $25k you'll never see again.

Non-RedNeck Westsider

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Re: Boat Clubs
« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2019, 11:15:24 PM »
As a previous owner, are you sure the boat club is for you?  Yeah it's hassle free but then all of the benefits of owning aren't there.  Plus, modern outboards are way more reliable and less maintenance intensive than old two strokes.  Personally, I'd prefer a gently used boat for $30-40k than giving the boat club $25k you'll never see again.

But neither are the headaches. 

Here are the main driving forces:
No yard to store boat, so I'm paying for either wet/dry dock at a marina or for storage at a yard somewhere.
Not real sure how much boat the Subaru can tow, so another vehicle might be in play unless I go the marina route.
How much of the $30k-$40k am I really going to see after 4 years of ownership?

And I'm using 4 years as the buy-in point, because that's about the length of the loan I would get for a $60k boat and that's the price-point I'm basing my origination fee and monthly dues on. 

I've pretty much sold myself, but I'm trying to get someone to really talk me out of it before I write a check, lol.  I brought MsNRW today for that reason and the pushback just wasn't there. 
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Adam White

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Re: Boat Clubs
« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2019, 05:36:11 AM »
So I'm looking for some advice.   

I have recently gotten bitten from the boating bug again.  My family owned boats.  I owned one through my mid 20's .  I love boats and being on the water, but don't ever want to have to deal with the maintenance issues that come with one. 

FF 20ish years and I'm tossing the idea around again, but this time rather than plunking down $60k into a giant hole in the water that I might recoup a little less than half back after I'm over it in 4-5 years; I'm thinking about helping someone fund their kid's college by plunking down about $25k over 4-5 years without actually ever owning anything (boat related maintenance headaches included).

Do any of you here have any experience with a Freedom Boat Club or Care-Free Boat Club?  I've toured both, and they both have some pros and cons.  But before I stroke a check for initiation, I'd like to solicit some advise from some people who aren't trying to sell me anything.

Ready?  Go!

I know nothing about this sort of thing...so I Googled Freedom Boat Club and it seems like an interesting idea. I guess it depends on a) how much it costs and b) how often you see yourself using the service. If you go out all the time (and have no issues reserving the boat you want), then it's probably a no-brainer. I mean after all, if you buy a boat, you're basically throwing your money away anyway. This way you don't have the headaches of owning a boat and can just leave the boat (with a full tank of gas) when you're done and not have to think about it again.

Sounds like a winner, if I'm honest. If you don't think you'll go out enough to actually justify the cost, maybe occasionally renting a boat is the better idea.
“If you're going to play it out of tune, then play it out of tune properly.”

blizz01

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Re: Boat Clubs
« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2019, 10:03:03 AM »
I've been eyeing Carefree at Doctor's Lake (Fleming Island).

Non-RedNeck Westsider

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Re: Boat Clubs
« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2019, 10:14:45 AM »
I've been eyeing Carefree at Doctor's Lake (Fleming Island).

What's your biggest push/drawback so far?

I'm pretty sure I'm going to do it - the reciprocity makes it convenient for the little bit I do travel.


And Adam, I don't go out a whole lot right now, and when I rent, it's usually in something not so great and sets me back anywhere from $400-$700 for the day (includes re-fuel).  These two boats were available the day I did my tour:





But I think about how many times we've said we'd like to go out and never do because of the hassle involved.  I think all of those times would happen if it's just a matter of making a few phone calls to have them get a boat ready.  I'm also leaning towards Care-free, and currently they have 7 boats and 47 members between Ortega and Atlantic Beach.  Not sure about Fleming, but it seems that there's a solid chance something would be available within a 25 minute drive.

I'm thinking that 12-15 trips a year is my break-even point.
« Last Edit: June 30, 2019, 10:17:53 AM by Non-RedNeck Westsider »
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blizz01

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Re: Boat Clubs
« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2019, 04:08:50 PM »
I think a lot of it for us is really the company we keep. Also, it becomes somewhat of a discipline shift - more of an obligation. Our friends all have boats, so it becomes "what's the point" to some extent.  Picking up a deck boat for example, really brings no value since we'd all be separated anyway.  Not sure if they still do it since the hurricane, but there used to be daily rentals at Dock Holiday's as well.  We could pick up a boat and head across the river to Metro Diner or Hurricanes for lunch with a reserved slip at the marina.

BridgeTroll

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Re: Boat Clubs
« Reply #7 on: June 30, 2019, 07:51:28 PM »
I have been considering the same thing NRW...  I have the same storage issues as you but no towing concerns...
In a boat at sea one of the men began to bore a hole in the bottom of the boat. On being remonstrating with, he answered, "I am only boring under my own seat." "Yes," said his companions, "but when the sea rushes in we shall all be drowned with you."

sanmarcomatt

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Re: Boat Clubs
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2019, 09:31:47 AM »

And I'm using 4 years as the buy-in point, because that's about the length of the loan I would get for a $60k boat and that's the price-point I'm basing my origination fee and monthly dues on. 

I've pretty much sold myself, but I'm trying to get someone to really talk me out of it before I write a check, lol.  I brought MsNRW today for that reason and the pushback just wasn't there. 

Soon as a saw the word 'loan" being used in the purchase comparison, I had to chime in. This seems like a no brainer decision. Please select "C", none of the above. If this is about creating magical memories with the family, think of something cheaper.

Getting your ass kicked annually in fantasy football AND being in debt is no way to go through life.

Non-RedNeck Westsider

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Re: Boat Clubs
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2019, 02:03:24 PM »
Getting your ass kicked annually in fantasy football AND being in debt is no way to go through life.

But I only know this way...
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Houseboat Mike

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Re: Boat Clubs
« Reply #10 on: July 01, 2019, 02:45:11 PM »
Just buy one and live on it....it has worked for me since 2011.... :)

Non-RedNeck Westsider

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Re: Boat Clubs
« Reply #11 on: July 01, 2019, 05:23:30 PM »
Just buy one and live on it....it has worked for me since 2011.... :)

That would probably work for me, too.

How big of a boat do I need for the 2 of us...

and a 13y/o....

and a 10 y/o....

and a 3 y/o....

and 175lbs of weimeraner?

A common mistake people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.
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Snaketoz

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Re: Boat Clubs
« Reply #12 on: July 01, 2019, 05:47:15 PM »
Just buy one and live on it....it has worked for me since 2011.... :)

That would probably work for me, too.

How big of a boat do I need for the 2 of us...

and a 13y/o....

and a 10 y/o....

and a 3 y/o....

and 175lbs of weimeraner?
You might need the USS Orleck

Adam White

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Re: Boat Clubs
« Reply #13 on: July 02, 2019, 07:13:36 AM »
Just buy one and live on it....it has worked for me since 2011.... :)

That would probably work for me, too.

How big of a boat do I need for the 2 of us...

and a 13y/o....

and a 10 y/o....

and a 3 y/o....

and 175lbs of weimeraner?

“If you're going to play it out of tune, then play it out of tune properly.”

Non-RedNeck Westsider

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Re: Boat Clubs
« Reply #14 on: August 07, 2019, 05:57:27 PM »
So the trigger was pulled last month.

I'm reporting back to say that so far it's lived up to the hype. 
We still have to plan weekends about 3-5 days out if we want to go out, but both times we've tried, there's been no issue with availability.  It really is just as easy as showing up to the marina and hopping in the boat, returning and leaving it tied to the dock.
Fuel costs are what they are.  I pay the marina.  No additional markup.
The quality of the fleet is better than anything I would have purchased on my own, so that's a nice perk. 
I did appreciate the OTW training they provided. 
I like and have used the day of, walk-up option.  I had a light work day and wanted to go for a cruise, so I called and was in the water in about 30 minutes.  Put in at Ortega and drove (???) up nearly to the Dames Point Bridge.

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