Deciding which luxury yacht for sale to buy is a thrilling, yet complex process. A yacht needs to be not only a luxurious home away from home for your friends and family, it also needs to be a safe, comfortable, practical, and well-maintained vessel that will take you on adventures in exotic places.
There are thousands of stunning luxury yachts for sale. However, not all of them will be right for you and your family. From the moment your yacht-buying journey begins, there are some core points to address to help you choose the right luxury yacht for sale.
How To Choose The Perfect Luxury Yacht For Sale
1. New build or existing yacht?
The pinnacle of yacht ownership is to design your own yacht, and with a new yacht construction, you can choose either a fully custom yacht, a semi-custom yacht, or a series yacht, depending on how much you want to customize it to your taste.
However, the majority of yacht owners choose to purchase an existing luxury yacht for sale to take advantage of the reduced cost, as well as avoiding the long build time.
2. Displacement, semi-displacement, or planing hull?
Luxury yachts come in all shapes and sizes, but fall into three main categories when it comes to hull design, each with its pros and cons. Displacement yachts are slow and stable, planing yachts are fast and less stable, and semi-displacement fall somewhere in between on both speed and stability. Our design your own yacht page explores all three types in more detail.
Some new luxury yachts for sale utilize a fourth hull form, the revolutionary fast displacement hull, which is fast, fuel efficient, and stable, but still relatively rare. Speak to your yacht broker to find out more about hull forms and how they affect speed, stability, and running costs.
3. Think hard about how you’ll use the yacht.
If you’re considering running the yacht commercially by chartering it out, you’ll need to look at the luxury yachts for sale from a slightly different perspective. When you’re searching for a yacht, speak to a charter broker to find out what the most popular yacht layouts, amenities, brands, and designers are, so that you can buy a yacht that won’t have any trouble securing charter bookings during the times you’re not using the yacht.
In this vein, be wary of buying a luxury yacht for sale with eclectic designs or particularly unusual features. Just because you and your family love that quirky interior, doesn’t mean the charter market will! This also applies to the resale process if you want to sell your yacht it down the line.
4. Consider where you want to use the yacht.
Not every luxury yacht for sale is equally suited to all cruising grounds. Think about the places you’ll want to cruise, and find a yacht that is well adapted to that area. For example, if you love the Bahamas, or want to anchor your yacht in a river, you’ll be looking for a yacht with a shallow draft.
If you’re planning to do a lot of remote cruising, a yacht with large fuel tanks and storage capacity is a wise choice, as well as a large array of watertoys so there’s adventure to be had when you’re far from the yachting centers. Also factor in whether the yacht has large enough fuel tanks to cross the Atlantic on its own, or whether you’d have to ship it over to the Mediterranean or Asia on a transporter.
Also consider the weather patterns in your favorite cruising spots. If there are strong winds or high swells at certain times of year, you may be looking for a yacht with zero speed stabilizers to ensure comfort at sea.
5. Imagine your family living on board.
It’s very easy to fall desperately in love with a particular yacht – so much so that you push aside any possible concerns about livability in the long term. When buying a luxury yacht for sale, it’s important to consider the living spaces and accommodations just as you would a house, asking yourself whether the layout is really suitable to your group.
After all, you’ll be wanting to spend many months on the yachts over the coming years, perhaps even living aboard for long periods, so listen to the little voice that wonders whether your teenagers will really be able to share a twin stateroom for more than 3 days without fighting. (Yachts are wonderful, but they can’t promise world peace.)
Also think about how your group might use the yacht – is a formal dining room a space you really require? Would you prefer a country kitchen? Do you want the added privacy of an upper deck master suite, and a main deck VIP for when you invite your parents or valued clients onboard? Is a Jacuzzi a ‘must have’ for your kids and on those days where the yacht is underway or the sea is rough? Do you want a swim platform, or can you manage with a ladder for getting in the water?
Yacht interiors are deviating more and more from the ‘standard’ layout, and there’s an ever-growing list of optional features such as gyms and spas. Do your research about what is possible, and what is necessary.
6. Know the pros and cons of different shipyards as they relate to you.
Have a good discussion with your broker about the relative merits of different boat builds. For example, you might be attracted to buying an American-built boat, such as a Christensen or a Westport, and like the fact that you’ll always be close to the shipyard for warranty work.
On the other hand, you might be fixed on the impressive Italian styling of Benetti yachts, or the famously good quality and resale value of the Dutch brands such as Feadship. With so many shipyards all extolling their virtues on their websites, there’s a great deal to know in order to figure out what build is right for you.
Your broker will be extremely well versed on the advantages, downsides, and market values of different boat brands, so utilize their industry knowledge to your advantage.
7. Condition, condition, condition.
The normal real estate mantra of location, location, location doesn’t apply to yachts – after all, the best thing about yachts is that you can pull anchor and drift off into the sunset!
With pre-loved yachts, you’ll be focused instead on the condition of the yacht for sale, delving deeply into the maintenance and survey history of the yacht, as well as any upgrades and refits done over the years. Luxury yachts for sale that have only had one or two owners in their history and have never chartered out tend to be in very good condition, so look for descriptions like ‘low engine hours’, ‘private only use’, and maintenance with ‘no expense spared’.
However, if you’re looking to buy a charter yacht, don’t be put off by a heavy charter history: you are buying a ‘brand’ in this case as the yacht is already well-known as a charter vessel, and will probably come with return charterers and a great reputation with brokers, as well as being already compliant with commercial legislation.
Again, yachts from premium custom yacht builders will generally age very well as their equipment, materials, machinery and craftsmanship are extremely high quality and tend to stand the test of time.
Don’t worry, you don’t need to know all of this for yourself—your yacht broker will be a vital ally in this process, explaining things each step of the way.
8. Take your time and do your research.
There are thousands of luxury yachts for sale at any given moment. Don’t rush in, but take your time learning about the relative merits of different yachts, designers, amenities, and layouts.
Your broker will be a valuable ally in your journey to find the perfect luxury yacht for sale, so use their knowledge to your advantage. Visit as many yachts and yacht shows with them as you can, learning as you go so you can whittle down what really matters to you. Make sure you book yacht charters on different types of yachts can also be a splendid way to ensure that you end up buying the right luxury yacht for sale.
Buying a luxury yacht for sale is incredible fun, but it’s also a big and costly decision. Savvy buyers find the right yacht brokerage to stand by them and advise every step of the way. Contact us using the contact form above or the numbers below to begin your search…
Image courtesy of Drozdin Vladimir