If you’re feeling the urge to take on a bold new adventure, boating could be just the outlet you’ve been looking for. Boat shows are taking place all over Wisconsin during this time of year, with manufacturers, dealers, and equipment vendors all vying for your attention. If you are in the market for a new boat, make a point to attend at least one boat show this year. In this post, we’ve listed our top tips for making the most of your visit.
Set Your Budget
It’s always fun to look at expensive luxury boats, but if you’re in the market to buy a boat, having a budget can help you keep your attention on the boat you can actually afford – not the ones it’s fun to fantasize about. There are several factors that can contribute to your overall cost besides just the purchase price. For example, if you are buying used, consider that you may face more costly repair and maintain costs than you would by purchasing a brand new boat with a warranty.
When it comes to price, you should also determine whether you plan to finance your boat or pay for it in cash. If you are financing, try shopping around for competitive rates from lenders who are willing to pre-approve you. That way, if you find a boat at the show, you’ll be ready to buy on the spot without having to apply for in-house financing.
Choosing a Boat
Boats come in many different types and sizes. Knowing which one is right for you is a matter of understanding your needs and preferences. Long-time boaters usually have an idea of the type of boat they are interested in. If you are a novice, however, you’ll need to do your research to determine which watercraft is right for you.
First, determine what purpose your boat will serve most. Will it be a fishing platform for you and a few buddies? Will it need to be a high-performance vessel capable of towing skiers and wakeboarders? Do you simply want a place to entertain friends and family? Since boats can function in different ways, the answers to these questions will help steer you toward the right watercraft. Some of the most popular boat types include:
- Pontoon boats
- Bass boats
- Ski boats
- Catamarans and sailboats
- Personal watercraft
Each boat type comes in different sizes. Smaller boats are often more agile, more affordable, and easier to store and transport. However, you may need a larger boat if you plan to invite guests aboard your vessel. For example, a small boat could seat as few as seven people, while its larger counterpart could seat up to 12 or more.
Don’t Forget the Boat Insurance
Once you find your dream boat, purchase insurance to protect it as soon as possible. This assures your watercraft is protected from day one – long before you ever get it on the water. After all, accidents can happen in transit or in storage. Unfortunately, homeowners insurance only provides limited coverage for watercraft, and sometimes no coverage at all. Instead, purchase a boat insurance policy from Gutman Insurance that provides coverage for:
- bodily injury liability
- property damage liability
- physical damages to your boat
- passenger injuries
- emergency assistance and towing
- special equipment
- personal property
- and more
Boat insurance is available from independent agents, including here at Gutman Insurance. To find out more about this important coverage and how we can help you save, contact our office today.