Buying a New vs. Used Boat

Have you been dreaming of buying your first boat? Looking to move up from your existing boat? When you’re ready to buy, there are lots of options out there, including new and used boats. So, what’s the best option for you? Learn more about the difference between buying a new vs. used boat.

Buying a new vs. used boat - image of boats for sale

Buying a New Boat

Though everyone likes getting something shiny and new, there are both pros and cons when it comes to buying a new vs. used boat.


  • A brand new boat doesn’t come with any unpleasant surprises in its history.
  • Customize the features and colors of your boat to get exactly what you want.
  • Enjoy the latest technology and innovations available.
  • The manufacturer’s warranty offers peace of mind.
  • Rig it the way you want with your choice of new gear and cool boat accessories. 
  • Choose from the widest selection instead of limiting yourself to the used market.
  • May be able to finance your new boat purchase through the dealer.
  • Shop with a dealer who can answer your questions and take you for a test ride.


  • A new boat is the most expensive option.
  • The value of your new boat will depreciate.
  • Options may be limited to what the dealer has in stock.

Buying a Boat Used

Cost can be a major factor when deciding between buying a new vs. used boat. Buying a used boat can save you money, but there are many things to consider before buying a used boat.

  • You will inherit any problems the previous owner had with the boat, such as reliability.
  • You can’t be sure the previous owner kept up with maintenance.
  •  If you purchase from an individual boat owner, they may not be able to answer all your questions about features, etc.
  • Any remaining manufacturer’s warranty may not be transferable.
  • If you buy from a dealer, they may offer in-house financing on pre-owned boats. Otherwise, you’ll need to pay in cash or take out a personal or boat loan.

If you are purchasing from a dealer that doesn’t offer financing, or from an individual, make sure you get pre-approved for your boat loan before beginning your search. Otherwise, you could lose out on your dream boat to another buyer because your financing took too long. This is another advantage of buying a new vs. used boat.

Finally, whether you’re buying new or used, it’s a good idea to get your credit in order first and get preapproved before you plan to purchase the boat. That way you can shop with confidence, knowing you have financing lined up and also how much of a budget you have to work with. Getting pre-approved can also help you decide between buying a new vs. used boat. For example, you may want to purchase a certain boat model-new, but find out you can only afford it used. Learn more about how to finance a boat. 

Get the boat that is right for you - Don't settle for something cheaper or used if it's not what you want - family sitting on a boat eating a snack

Before You Buy

Ready to start shopping? Your shopping experience may differ depending on whether you are buying a new vs. used boat.  Either way, go into the process prepared and informed with these tips.

Research boat dealers.

Look up your local boat dealer and the inventory they carry. If they don’t have the type of boat you’re looking for, ask if they can get it for you or check with your next closest dealer. If you tell them what you’re looking for, they may be able to contact the manufacturer. This is more likely to be beneficial if you are buying a new vs. used boat.

Research individual sellers.

Risk is another factor to consider when deciding between buying a new vs. used boat. If you’ve decided to buy your boat used, be sure to do your research on individual sellers before you consider buying from them. You may also want to shop from reputable sites such as Boattrader.com. Once you’ve settled on a particular seller and boat, ask to meet in person to see the boat before you commit to buying. You can/should also request multiple videos and pictures of your prospective boat.

Additional Tips For Choosing Between Buying A New vs. Used Boat

  • Whether new or used, arrange to see the boat in advance if possible, whether that’s a dealership showroom, a marina, or a video walkthrough if nothing else.
  • Schedule a manufacturer factory tour to see how your boat is made. This is a major advantage when buying a new vs. used boat. During the factory tour, you can ask questions to the manufacturer and see how your boat is being made.  Read more about the benefits of a boat factory tour.
  •  Don’t settle—a boat is a big investment, whether you’re getting it for fishing, family fun, or both. Get the boat that is right for you, even if that means waiting until you can qualify for a bigger boat loan or save up a bigger down payment. Don’t settle for something cheaper or used if it’s not what you want. Learn more about how to choose the right boat.
  • If buying used, look for a boat you can customize to get everything you want.

Learn more about the Crevalle Life!

At Crevalle, we are fishing boat manufacturers who make versatile, customizable boats specifically designed for the needs of the fisherman and the whole family! Learn more about Crevalle boats and browse specific models like our sportfishing boat, hybrid bluewater fishing boat, hybrid crossover, and hybrid bay boat. We’d also love to welcome you for a factory tour! You can also find your local Crevalle Boats dealer.

Read “What to look for when buying a new boat” and “Choosing the Best Bay Boat” to learn more about finding the right boat.

After you’ve found the perfect boat, be sure to check out our New Boat Owners Guide



More From Crevalle

Follow us

Like this article?

Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Share on Linkdin
Share on Pinterest