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Are folks buying sailboats?

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Feb 4, 2012
Catalina 30 Watts Bar
My C27 has been up for sail since last July. Considering I've put way more $ into it than I'm asking, I've only had one serious looker and several calls. Anybody else having difficulty selling their boat?
Nov 7, 2012
1978 Catalina 30 Wilbur-by-the-Sea
My C27 has been up for sail since last July. Considering I've put way more $ into it than I'm asking, I've only had one serious looker and several calls. Anybody else having difficulty selling their boat?
Since you asked, yes, just bought mine last November. Luck for me and the boat I love old things that eat more money than they are really worth.

Jul 25, 2011
Catalina 22 East Greenwich Cove, RI
I just listed my C22 last week. 2 lookers so far and 2 callers. No offers yet. Tough to show a sailboat in New England in the winter since its covered on the trailer in my yard. I hope it sells soon so I can buy a C25 I have my eyes on.

I don't think the market is bad. I would think that you've got to be realistic about the fact that you rarely ever get back what you put into your boat!


Jul 31, 2010
AquaCat 12.5 17342 Wateree Lake, SC
Give us the link to your ad. I'd love to see it.


May 14, 2011
Catalina 27 San Francisco
We just bought a C27 about 6 weeks ago and we were lucky enough to sell our Santana 22 last week. We didn't get a lot of bites on the Santana... Just the right one.
Feb 26, 2008
Catalina 30 Marathon, FL
DJ, she's a pretty boat and looks to be in good condition.

Did you try posting her on Craig's List and Sailing Texas with a link back to your pictures on Catalina Owners?


Feb 4, 2012
Catalina 30 Watts Bar
Jim, I do have it on Craig's list but not sailing Texas. Maybe I'll give that's shot.
Aug 14, 2012
Catalina 30 Oak Harbor, WA
Sailboats for sale

Hi DJ;
Winter is a tough time to sell ANY boat. However, I'm on the West coast (Washington) and had great success selling my Sun Yacht 27. Had several people in a price war. First with cash got it. At the same time I was buying a C30. All of the advertising was word of mouth. Maybe I got lucky, but the price was RIGHT, on both sides.:dance:
May 27, 2012
Oday 222 Beaver Lake, Arkansas
Maybe you sellers could add in what the "right price" was?

I dont know what its worth, all a guy can really ever do is study the market until your eyes bleed, then throw out a price you feel is within the given market. It really matters not what you have spent or invested, its only worth what someone offers you that you can accept. If your over what the market will bear, no one will ever call.

Then you have the electric drive to consider. I dont believe anyone could know what the electric drive is worth, or if its a detractor. It might help to give details as far as approx hp, the motor specifics, prop used, maximum speed, as well as maximum range. It may also help to give details as to how your charging the batteries, and costs, if any, that that might involve (electric bill, etc..). Its probably a much better modification for something your going to keep long term, than what it would be worth to someone else. My guess is a savvy buyer, even one who might really appreciate the mod, would try to talk it down. Your job is to talk it up as best you can, and be able to back it up with a good sea trial if need be.


Feb 4, 2012
Catalina 30 Watts Bar
Anchor- your right the electric as being something people might be timid about. After doing the electric mod and using it I would do it again especially for lake sailing. If my diesel ever crapped out in my C30, I would seriously consider putting in an appropriate sized electric. For day sailing it's great. I tend not to go out if the wind is calm no matter what the motor.
I do have an outboard bracket on the back if someone wanted to use it but only if they were going to do alot of motoring.
I also realize that I won't get nearly what I put into it but even if you subtract the cost of the electric propulsion system it's a fair price for all the new equipment.
Oct 25, 2011
Island Packet IP31 Lake St. Louis, Montreal
It took me close to two years to sell the PY26. I had it advertised every where I could think of. Part of the reason it took so long was that we were asking top dollar and there are plenty of "cheaper" boats on the market. I could have sold it for half price many times but held out.

When the right buyer came around, the boat sold very quickly.

I ddi get anxious to sell a few times when some reasonably priced IP31s came on the market, but in the end it all worked out and we got a great IP31 for a very reasonable price, two weeks aftrr finalizing the sale.

Dec 11, 2008
catalina C27 stillwater
I also agree with listing at Sailing Texas. For many folks it has become the defacto proper place to sel a boat. Just know, to keep your ad live over the long term, you gotta reduce your price, I seem to recall every 6 weeks, by some consistent percentage. It works though, and is a good place. I sold my last C22 there. here is a link: http://www.sailingtexas.com/cboats2catalinas.html
Feb 8, 2007
Catalina 36 MKII Pensacola Beach, FL
DJ, it looks like a lot of boat for the money to me.
It took me about 6 months to sell my Macgregor 26S (on this site) last year.

One question -- I don't see any cushions in your pictures. If they look good, then I would add a picture of them.

Good luck.
Apr 8, 2010
Frers 33 41426 Westport, CT
My C27 has been up for sail since last July. Considering I've put way more $ into it than I'm asking, I've only had one serious looker and several calls. Anybody else having difficulty selling their boat?
After looking over your listing, I'd suggest you do the following:

1) cleanup the hanging wires going to the instruments

2) re-oil all the interior wood (can be done in a few hours) Dalys Seafin will give a great almost varnished look, and can be easily and quickly applied with a rag.

EDIT: 2.5) re-oil the cutting board with mineral oil (preferrably food safe rated)

3) reinstall the cushions

4) take all new interior pictures showing the brighly shining wood and the cushions in place (even if they need recovering), remove all the existing interior pictures from the listing.

5) take some new exterior shots that show the condition of the hull and bottom paint.

6) write a more extensive description

7) list it everywhere you can.


Feb 4, 2012
Catalina 30 Watts Bar
Thanks all for the encouragement. The cushions do need recovering. I stored them in the garage to keep them from getting more wear and tear. I've since put them back on the boat and will take another photo with them. I've actually already re-oiled the interior teak but not the cutting board.
Apr 29, 2011
Finnsailer 38 Massachusetts
Whatever anyone says or writes, it is not a strong sellers market right now. Electric drive also vastly limits the pool, I'm sorry to say. I'm sure some day people will look back at us primitives and laugh that we burned fossil fuel to get places, but for me a boat is aspirational and I can't be limited by range either under power or sail, even if I am not likely to go somewhere for awhile. I like to always be able to think that I can go anywhere!
Jan 12, 2013
Catalina C27 - Tall Rig Door County, Wis
I agree with four points,

I sold a boat 1 day last week priced it right after I figured out what needed to be done I took that off my selling price,
Then I listed what needed to be done no BS! and a the phone rang off the hook I weaseled out the dreamers to the buyers and had a showing on a cold day In Wisconsin a family man came and said he'd buy the boat cash tax return money $ but liked the items that I had listed done. some I can do, some my marine tec will do at a fair price if I help toss tools.
So now is the time to sell! folks do have some money and it is getting into the countdown to the weather will start to break,,,,
I see you listed all you have on your boat, list all you have done!! maybe get a survey done. sellers do it ! a great way to get a few fixes in.
I just bought a Cat27 same vintage as yours owner was at $10500, got it for $5k and she's SWEET, the PO did lots of upgrades! lots in the wrong areas.

As these boat age buyers look at structural problems the web makes the info so easy to find as in years past only a small group of folks had the inside knowledge.
Yes you may find some one that is compulsive to buy your boat, but more likely you may not.

So here is my old Cat list if you did the service tell them,

1.Keel bolts Catalina SMILE
2. Mast step base any repairs made?
3. compression post thru to bilge has it been replace & repaired
4. Standing Rigging & attachments including chain plates and bulk head walls. not sure why folks skip on replacing this more often salt water but still fresh water the fittings get stressed with age!
5.thru hulls
6. wiring updated?
I have a few more but its a basic list similar to some other boat manufactures some more common to Catalina brand and vintage.
And as said you may like to hang a outboard and raise the $$$ for the just in case buyer as electric is may be great for sailors but in my circle they tend to be at dock or motoring!
Jul 25, 2011
Catalina 22 East Greenwich Cove, RI
Well, I just sold the C22 I mentioned earlier. After 2 years of ownership I only lost about $500 on the sale when it was all said and done. Sold on Craigslist to a new sailor. Had 3 interested buyers but this guy showed up with cash in hand and offered $500 below sell price. I couldn't say no. I was imagining April with no offers. As they tell you in Economics class, "money now is worth more than money later."

Now comes the fun part...logistics in buying the C25 I want. No trailer, 3 day sail from home port. I think I'm getting the trailer first and that solves the problem.

Anyhow, it's a buyers market!
Jun 2, 2004
Several Catalinas C25/C320 USA

I recently sold my C 320, it was for sale for over two years. It was immaculate, with lots of options and very low engine hours. Had it sold once but the buyer could not get financing and only two others who appeared to be seriously interested. The ads were very detailed, listing all equipment by type. I put signs on the boat, listed on this site, with a broker at a big marina (not on my lake), then an on line company, finally an ad in a paper in the largest city nearest my lake (about 60 miles away)...for a flat rate, the ad ran until the boat sold. It sold by the ad in the paper

I attribute the long time to sell to:

- The economy.
- Being a relatively 'expensive' boat.
- Small inland lake away from a metro area.
- Very few sailboats on the lake.
- The entire area is power boat country.
- No sailboat friendly marinas on the lake (no way to haul it, commission it, etc).
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