Boat buying tips to help avoid headaches when on the water - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Boat buying tips to help avoid headaches when on the water

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If you are in the market to become a boat owner, there are several important considerations in choosing a vessel. If you are in the market to become a boat owner, there are several important considerations in choosing a vessel.

CAROLINA BEACH, NC (WECT) – After a brief cool spell, warm weather has returned to the area -- and that means boat ramps are expected to be busy this weekend, with families heading out for a day on the water.

If you are in the market to become a boat owner, there are several important considerations in choosing a vessel.

"It's a pretty big decision and I would strongly recommend to buy locally to get some dealer support," said Joel Romig, a local boat dealer. "It helps to make the whole boating experience a lot more pleasurable."

Because you want it to be a fun experience for you and your family, purchase a boat large enough to meet your needs, not just what you can afford. By knowing the primary use of the boat, you can narrow down the size of boat you will be happy with.

"Spend a lot of time figuring out exactly how they will use the boat because there are a lot of options around here, including off-shore fishing, in-shore fishing, running over to the beach, up and down the river," said Romig. "There are a lot of different types of boats that can be used around here, so you really want to take the time to make sure you are making the right decision the first time."

But if you expect to save money on a previously owned boat, you could be in trouble if you don't know what you are looking for.

An inspection of the hull, but inside and outside, by a qualified boat mechanic is well worth the investment. And while the accessories may look okay, remember that salt water can be deadly to some electronics and wiring.

"Boating is suppose to relieve stress, so you don't want to buy something that is going to cause you stress down the road," said Romig. "Nothing wrong with buying a used boat, but you certainly want to have it looked at first by someone who knows what they are doing."

It is also recommended that you take one of the safe boating courses before heading out on the water. Knowing what to do when you are away from the dock could help prevent accidents and having to be towed in to shore.

The right boat is the one that you can use and maintain easily, no matter what type of boat you are looking for.

And if you decide that you don't want the responsibilities that come with being a boat owner, you can check with some of the local dealers and marinas. Many of them have boats you can rent for a day or for the weekend.

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