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Thread: Living on a boat

  1. #1
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    Default Living on a boat

    Hi there all,

    Anyone have any experience living on a boat, and if so, can anyone reccomend any good marinas in Miami?

    There is a thread discussing this on here, but it is from a few years ago.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Senior Member GandJ's Avatar
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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    A friend of mine lives on his boat. He's at Dinner Key Marina, which allows live-aboards. The marina is in Coconut Grove, and that marina is very popular. I think it has a waiting list, but it might be worth a call.


    Glenn

  3. #3
    Member Mario's Avatar
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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    Isn't there a section of the bay, North of MacArthur Causeway where you can drop anchor and basically live for free?

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    Senior Member GandJ's Avatar
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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    Quote Originally Posted by Mario View Post
    Isn't there a section of the bay, North of MacArthur Causeway where you can drop anchor and basically live for free?

    Except for restricted anchoring zones such as shipping/boating channels, sensitive reefs, etc., boats are pretty much allowed to anchor where they want. But, it would be pretty hard to live on your boat like that. When boaters say "live" on your boat, they mean full time. They're not just talking about a weekend or a week. A few days or even a week is no problem for a lot of boats, but for full-time live-aboard people, they need to be at a marina, which has electric and water hookups, as well as sewage disposal, and other necessities. The fresh water supply and waste water holding tanks on boats are only of a limited size. Most marinas also have cable TV hook-ups for live-abards, as well as phone lines.


    Glenn

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    Senior Member wpns4l's Avatar
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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    My next big life adventure plan is to buy a boat and hit the seas and just island hop through the Caribbean and up and down the central american coast. Hopefully sometime in my 40s.
    Gus, GandJ and Christy like this.

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    Member Mario's Avatar
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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    You're not the only one wpns4l, the only thing is that I would try to sail around the Americas and once I'm done, cross over the ocean. I'm gonna need a pretty sturdy boat..
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  7. #7
    Senior Member wpns4l's Avatar
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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    yea the boat i would totally love to own even though i dont know a damn thing about sailing is an Island Packet 52. Boat is so gorgeous and i love its layout but a brand new one cost like 700k. A girl i used to date back in the day her family had a 50ft Catalina and i used to go out with them a lot on the great lakes. I wish i would have taken advantage of that though and had her dad teach me how to sail.

    If i ever do this trip though i will prly look for something in the 28-35ft range and for 50k or less.... unless i become super rich between now and then.

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    Member Mario's Avatar
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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    Wow ! A boat for 50k, not too bad, sounds pretty attainable.

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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    I know several people who live on boats. And I have stayed on boats as well. On a vessel like an aircraft carrier it feels like you are in a massive building that offers all the services you could imagine. If you are staying on a private craft there are somethings you have to account for. Are you at a dock, or at a mooring ball. If you are moored out in the water then you'll need a dingy for transportation to land and back. Also getting power on the boat can be tricky but solar panels work great. Taking your groceries to the boat isn't as easy as it is from a car to a front door. You also have to remember to tie off well, you don't want your home drifting away. I love boats and If I would I'l be living on a sailboat right now.

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    Gus
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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    Near the Miami Marina in Coconut Grove, moored just outside of the marina, there's a place the locals have dubbed "Waterworld"... they call it that because you can live on your boat, or squat on an an abandoned vessel and pay not rent or taxes. You got to be careful, though. The place has a lawless reputation. Not long ago, a double-murder took place at Waterworld and was featured on the TV show "The First 48" on A&E.

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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    Here some info on the topic...

    - Housing costs are approximately 2/3′s less on a boat compared to living on land. There are no mortgage, land taxes, gas (you just need to fill the propane tank a couple of times a season), electricity and water expenses
    - If you further aim at cutting costs, you can opt to anchor out. That is, if you live in a southern/temperate location like Miami where ice forming on the water isn't an issue). A dinghy is essential when anchoring out in order to get ashore for work/ supplies. If this living situation works for you, living expenses could be extremely low
    - Mooring balls (a method of anchoring without using an anchor) are available for a very low cost

    In Miami, there are slips at Miamarina at Bayside, once a filming location for various Miami Vice episodes, and host to the Strictly Sail venue of the Miami International Boat Show, attracting visitors from around the world every year. They offer great "conveniences & features" like cable tv /internet access, laundry facilities and 24-hour staff/ security. I'd be curious to find out how much the slips are per month.

    Dinner Key Marina is very popular, as GandJ mentioned. They will accept only "seaworthy vessels, properly titled and registered."

    "Applications for moorings are taken on a first come, first served basis" as they state on their website. The above mentioned can be downloaded and submitted here:

    http://www.miamigov.com/marinas/page...ey_mooring.asp

    If seriously interested in living on a boat in Miami, it wouldn't be a bad idea to have a look at their VESSEL OWNER ACTION PLAN, listing precautionary and active measures (in the event of a hurricane):

    http://www.miamigov.com/marinas/doc/...ction_Plan.pdf

    Final note: The many gadgets you see in those glossy yachty magazines - don't buy into believing they are essential for boat-living. For example, as I've read on one website, a $50.00 hand held GPS works just as well as the fancy $3000 model.
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  12. #12
    Senior Member wpns4l's Avatar
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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    Quote Originally Posted by Ingrid View Post
    I'd be curious to find out how much the slips are per month.
    according to their site. Miamarina doest allow live aboard but they charge 17.05 per foot per month. Not sure if that includes hook ups or not.

    Dinner key is 21.85 per foot per month for live aboard. A mooring ball there is 275 per month..... i would totally do that, just for the experience. I imagine it would get old after a year.... probably way before that.

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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    Hi Stewie,

    I would recommend the marina near Monty's. There are lots of people who stay on boats there, and all the services you need, Lots of yachts and charter boats. http://www.miamibeachmarina.com/ It's a great location in South Beach.

  14. #14
    Senior Member GandJ's Avatar
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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    Quote Originally Posted by Ingrid View Post
    Here some info on the topic...

    - Housing costs are approximately 2/3′s less on a boat compared to living on land. There are no mortgage, land taxes, gas (you just need to fill the propane tank a couple of times a season), electricity and water expenses
    .................
    Final note: The many gadgets you see in those glossy yachty magazines - don't buy into believing they are essential for boat-living. For example, as I've read on one website, a $50.00 hand held GPS works just as well as the fancy $3000 model.


    Ingrid -

    Much of what you posted is great info. I'd like a to add a couple comments. ...

    As far as expenses, one needs to keep in mind that although you do not have a traditional "mortgage" for a boat, you still have boat payments (unless you paid cash upfront, which can also be true for a land home). A boat that is of a size that you would live on could easily be more expensive than a house, and it is almost always more expensive per square foot of living area. Additionally, in most markets, a home increases in value, and can be a good investement (okay, not in the past 5 to 7 years). A boat ALWAYS loses value, no matter what the market.

    Regarding a GPS unit, it is true that a handheld $50 unit will work just as well as $3,000 unit... if your goal is to just get your current LAT / LON coordinates, and possibly squint at small screen tbhat might or might not have pre-loaded charts . However, the best improvement I have ever made to our boat was to install one of those large screen GPS chartplotters. Sure, my old small one could tell me where I was as far as LAT/LON, but it was totally useless at 35 mph bouncing in the waves. I would have to bring the boat off plane, and down to idle speed every time I wanted to read my position. With the larger chartplotter, I can easily see where I am located while underway at speed, and easily see upcoming hazzards, reefs, etc. It has made boating much more enjoyable .... and safer.

    You can see the chartplotter on top of the helm/dash in our avatar pic. Janet is at the helm.


    Glenn
    Last edited by GandJ; 04-05-2012 at 02:22 PM.
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    Member dylan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    Yes the "Water World" is a special community, I am friends with several of its residents, and I have spent nights out there myself. It is also known as "The Anchorage" to the locals. but they live for free, as long as you float you are ok. If you get lucky there are some mooring balls out there that seems to do a lot better than just anchors when the weather kicks up.

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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    Quote Originally Posted by Christy View Post
    Hi Stewie,

    I would recommend the marina near Monty's. There are lots of people who stay on boats there, and all the services you need, Lots of yachts and charter boats. http://www.miamibeachmarina.com/ It's a great location in South Beach.
    That's a great location that Christy mentioned. It must be noted though that, compared to wpns4l's Dinner key rate of $21.85 per foot per month for live aboard, Miami Beach Marina by Monty's charges from (that means starting at) $60.00 per ft. per month, which is a huge difference(!) The yearly rate comes down to $22 per ft. per month.

    Here's a great website listing marinas in Florida:

    http://florida.boatmarinas.net/

  17. #17
    Senior Member wpns4l's Avatar
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    Default Re: Living on a boat

    Yea the miami beach marina would be an awesome place to have a slip but its also one of the most expensive

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