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Boat Ownership

Cost: Boat ownership is a great responsibility. Generally boats of all descriptions have licensing, regulations and insurance obligations as well as the other costs of fuel, maintenance and moorings. These fall into fixed and variable costs:

Fixed costs- these include annual Navigation Authority licence, insurance, boat recovery policy, mooring permit (CRT) or fees (private) and boat safety certificate.

Variable costs - these include, hull and engine maintenance and fuel for cruising, diesel or gas for cooking, heating, generating electricity, toilet pump-out costs and shoreline electricity.

Waterways (Government) regulations are becoming more stringent of late and the cost of fuel for cruising is expected to rise through taxation. This will hopefully be supplemented by tighter control of boat licensing.

Sole ownership is probably the most expensive way of boating but this does give the owner flexibility and choice where and when they use the boat as the owner is wholly responsible for everything.

Shared ownership is an option for those who want to share the costs in exchange for a restricted use policy and spreading the general running and fixed costs of ownership between the owners.

Shared Ownership

Like people, no two boats are the same. Owners use their boats in different ways. Some people just want somewhere to go and 'chill out' and rarely leave their marina or moorings. Others will want to be at the opposite extreme and live aboard as residential boaters continuously cruising!

The size, style and fit out of the boat will depend greatly on the use the boat will be expected to be put to.

We own 'Maid of the Mist' a 60 foot, narrowboat

In 2009 we cruised just 180 days. For us the 2009 estimated costs are:

    • Licence discounted by 10% for prompt payment to £676

    • Insurance - Annual £264.00p

    • Moorings @ £0.75p per foot per week £2,340.00p + VAT (£409.50p) = £2749.50p

    • Hull maintenance£420.00p

    • General maintenance (estimated) £800.00p

    • Pump-outs x 4 @ £15 each = £60.00p

    • Cruising / Generation / Heating fuel (estimated) £1200.00p

    • Total £3457.66p

    • That works out to £34.57 per days usage!

We planned on eventually using the boat as a live aboard six months of the year. The total cost of using the boat as a live aboard from 2nd week in April to last week in September won't be much more making the daily cost much lower at around £19 per day. That's about £580 a month