What is the Best Time of Year to Buy a Boat?
The best time to buy a boat is during the late boating season or early fall. This period offers maximum discounting, highest trade values, and the most lenient terms as dealers are looking to clear inventory for the next model year. You’ll find more room for negotiation, potential extras included, and if you’re ordering a boat, you’ll have ample time to customize it to your preferences without the rush of the peak season. However, the ideal time for you will also depend on your personal circumstances and readiness to make the purchase.
When it comes to purchasing a boat, timing can be everything. You may be putting yourself at a slight disadvantage if you only consider the warmer months for your purchase. This article delves into the pros and cons of boat buying throughout the year, offering insights that could save you money and ensure you get the boat that’s perfect for you.
Boat Show Season
The Boat Show Season is often lauded as one of the best times to buy a boat. “There are some, not all, boat manufacturers that will have some availability of promotions or discounting available by the boat show.” However, with high inventory levels comes high demand, which can lead to increased prices.
Early Spring Season
Spring brings sunshine and a surge in boat sales, akin to “buying a motorcycle when the sun comes out or a snowmobile when the snow flies.” During this time, there is definitely less negotiation power due to the excitement of the season. Inventory is less available due to winter sales, and custom orders may not be fulfilled in time for the season.
Main Boating Season
The main boating season offers the immediacy of purchase. “You can try it right away,” highlighting the benefit of no waiting period. However, the downside is you’re starting to get to the lowest inventory levels of the year.
Late Boating Season/Early Fall
As dealers prepare for the next model year, “you will find maximum discounting, highest trade values, and most lenient terms,” this is the time for deals, free storage, and added accessories. For those ordering custom boats, this period offers tons of time to get exactly what you want.
Late Fall/Early Winter
During the late fall and early winter, boat dealers are less busy, which means “emails are returned faster, phone calls are returned faster,” and the level of attention you receive is at its peak. This is a significant advantage for buyers who prefer a more personalized shopping experience.
When Should You Buy?
“Shop for your boat when you’re ready.” If the urge strikes in spring, go for it. The potential discount in the fall won’t seem as significant when you’re missing out on the water.
Understanding the Seasons
It’s about understanding your personality and how you plan to do your boating. Find the time of season that works best for who you are and how you plan to do your boating and choose to do your boat shopping then.
Three crucial tips for when you start your boat shopping:
Don’t reveal you’re a cash buyer. A finance deal often means slightly more profit for the dealer.
Don’t mention selling your trade privately. Trades can lead to future profits and new customers for the dealer.
Avoid saying you’re just looking for the best price. Boating is a relationship business, and building a good rapport with your salesman can pay dividends.
Whether you’re looking for a deal, the perfect custom order, or immediate satisfaction, there’s a season for every buyer. Remember, it’s not just about the price—it’s about the relationship and the journey to finding your perfect boat.
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