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Are Yachts Worth Buying?

By Robert Bowman | Posted On Apr 15, 2024
Updated On Apr 16, 2024

Whether you are a first time boat owner or a seasoned yachtsman, there is one question that will need to be answered before you are ready to move forward with any purchase: Are yachts worth buying? More specifically, is the yacht you are considering buying going to be worth the time, money, and effort to be a successful boat owner. 

Yachts can be a financial asset if structured the correct way through charter programs or even short term rentals. The yacht charter market has remained strong, making it easier to own and maintain a yacht if on a stricter budget. "A luxury yacht can turn out to be financially a good investment if either purchased at a competitive price or if turned into a successful charter business," said Captain Jeff Palmer, President of United Yacht Sales. "As a previous Captain of several motor yachts, I've seen yachts become completely booked during season where the owner not only covered the costs of ownership for the year, but made money on top of it." If purchasing for private ownership, we recommend doing your research on the cost of owning a yacht so you are completely aware of the ongoing needed maintenance and any storage fees.

Financial investments aside, let's focus on the real reasons that people purchase a luxury boat. Yachts are an invitation to a small, special club, one whose membership grants them freedom on the water, privacy, excitement, relaxation, adventure, and the creation of lasting memories, all at the same time. A yacht is worth buying if you want to make an investment in your lifestyle. Hiring an experienced, professional yacht broker to assist you in this process can not only alleviates stress, but can really help you find the perfect boat to maximize your boating plans.

(Below: This Princess 56 is a great example of a cruising boat that can be operated by an owner, but can also be put into a charter program.)

princess yacht makes good charter investment




Let's face it, there comes a time in everyone's life where it becomes physically difficult to safely operate a boat. There's an old adage about being the richest man in the cemetery, as in "you cant' take your money with you", so why not enjoy it while you can?nbsp;

(Below: Youtube star Aquaholic has a multi-part series on 'How To Go Boating' for beginners.)

Buying a yacht is a wonderful thing, both for you and the lucky guests you plan to invite on board. As Peter Schmidt, founder of United Yacht Sales once said, "You cannot place a value on the look on your kid's face when he reels in his biggest fish or the uninterrupted time spent with your family outside of cell phone range, those moments are priceless."

Here are several personal reasons to make the leap and buy a yacht:

  • The memories created on board are unmatched to any other hobby or recreation.
  • Boating reduces stress.
  • Enjoy destinations that are normally unreachable except by boat.
  • Hobbies like fishing and scuba diving. 
  • Enhance your time outdoors in comfort.
  • Cruise to different destinations with all of the comforts of home.



(Below: This 2019 Azimut 55 Flybridge is a perfect boat for enjoying a day sunbathing, cruising the coastline, or having dinner with friends.)

azimut yachts 55 worth buying

Most buyers know from the start whether they plan on purchasing a brand new boat or finding the perfect pre-owned vessel on the brokerage market. Both options have their advantages and those pros and cons must be weight between you and your yacht broker. Purchasing a new boat is an exciting process that can include customizing it to your own tastes and boating needs, as well as the thrill of being the first to own it. But there are downsides to a new boat as well, including depreciation, wait times, and the higher purchase cost.

Buying a pre-owned yacht also comes with its share of concerns such as its service history, has the owner treated it with care, and has the manufacturer released a new model to replace the boat you're buying. These are all valid concerns that can be discussed with your broker to make the appropriate decision. Here are a few things to consider:

  • While there will still be depreciation, it's likely not be nearly as much as when purchased new.
  • Don't be afraid to ask for the complete set of service records. Usually good owners have kept a file.
  • Do your homework for a reputable surveyor. If you don't know one, there are many helpful resources online.
  • Have a storage plan first. There may be limitations at your marina or wherever you plan to keep it.
  • Most of all, be open and honest with your broker about your needs and budget. This will make for a much smoother process.


United Yacht Sales has the world's largest network of boat buyers and sellers in the industry, thanks to our team of over 250 yacht brokers in 104 different locations. Whether buying a luxury boat or selling one, we have the right expert on staff to assist you in navigating the brokerage market for your type of yacht. If you're looking at selling a boat, there is no quicker way to get activity than listing it with United. Our entire team is immediately notified every time a listing agreement is made with United Yacht Sales and many boats are sold before they ever even make it online. Our support team is among the best in the industry at marketing your yacht. 100% of our marketing budget goes towards advertising our clients' listings, a claim not many other firms can make. To get started listing your yacht, fill out our online form What's My Yacht Worth?


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