Boats First Time Boat Owner Looking for Help

Boats, rafts, float tubes, etc

Mike22

Active Member
I would like to buy a boat.

With no family history of boating, I don't have anyone to turn to with any boat-related questions. I would like to start this thread in order to organize all of my current and upcoming questions related to boat-owning in Washington State, whether it's related to boating regulations and restrictions, outboard/trailer maintenance, boating safety, or whatever else comes up along the way. I'll try to keep my questions specific, but I will accept any and all suggestions or advice.

I'd like to start simple, so I'm thinking about a 14' v-hull aluminum boat with a trailer included in the sale. I'd like to buy used, so I am currently searching on Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace.

First question: As I have been looking at different listings, some boats and trailers have titles and some do not have titles. If I plan on registering my boat and trailer in Washington State, is it critical that they are both sold to me with titles?
 

Jockurr

Premium
I would not buy a boat or trailer without the seller having a title for both. I would call it critical or more to my way of thinking, a deal breaker if the seller didn't have a titles.

Good luck in your search.
Couldn't agree more from a boat owner history of 7 vessels purchased locally, outside the state and off of websites like Yacht World and Boat Trader over the course of 36 years.
A. Get every bit of documentation you can including motor diagnostics if possible.
B. DON'T FALL IN LOVE with the fanciest one you see. They'll all break your heart at one time or. another. Some out of sight of land! Ask me how I know.
 
I would not buy a boat or trailer without the seller having a title for both. I would call it critical or more to my way of thinking, a deal breaker if the seller didn't have a titles.

Good luck in your search.
10000000000% agree. I'm the dummy who bought a raft w/ trailer and the trailer didn't have a title. Didn't think it would be a big deal, and even though I never planned on using the trailer long term, if you can't track the last registered Owner down and have them transfer the title, you have to file for a temporary title. The state then gives you a title, but temporarily for 3 years. They give you a temp title in case the previous registered owner claims it stolen...in which case you'd have to give it back....
 

Salmo_g

Premium
Since boats and trailers both need to be licensed in WA, it is a very big PITA if you buy either one without the title, as Long Rod Silvers pointed out above. Beyond that, choosing a boat means knowing or deciding what you want to use it for. A 14' aluminum probably means you'll want a motor for it as those boats are cumbersome to row any appreciable distance. A 25 hp outboard is usually the optimal choice for most 14' craft. A used outboard motor can be a good deal or your worst nightmare, so if you consider a used outboard, have it checked out first. Oh, and based on previous boat threads, you might want to find out if the boat leaks before you decide to buy it.
 

Chucker

Chucking a dead parrot on a piece of string!
Yep, don’t buy a boat or trailer without titles. It’s a PITA!

What do you want to do with your 14’ boat?
 

Mike22

Active Member
Yep, don’t buy a boat or trailer without titles. It’s a PITA!

What do you want to do with your 14’ boat?

I plan on using the boat for my local stillwater chasing bass and trout. No plans to use it on moving water, but I would consider taking it onto the small protected bay I live near.
 

thatguyryry

Active Member
I am currently in the process of upgrading from an old 1960s ski boat with a 2013 25hp tiller that I put on it to a bigger boat. I joke that my current boat was my dowery, as it was my wife great-grandfathers boat before I got it. We were unable to find the titles and had work around a whole bunch of bureaucracy to be able to be even gifted the boat. Wouldn't want to do it again.

I fish out of Tacoma, and as long as I watch the weather, I feel comfortable fishing anywhere around that area even with a small old boat like mine.

If you are looking for a new reliable motor, feel free to send me a PM and I can help point you in the right direction.
 

Jeff Dodd

Active Member
I would like to buy a boat.

With no family history of boating, I don't have anyone to turn to with any boat-related questions. I would like to start this thread in order to organize all of my current and upcoming questions related to boat-owning in Washington State, whether it's related to boating regulations and restrictions, outboard/trailer maintenance, boating safety, or whatever else comes up along the way. I'll try to keep my questions specific, but I will accept any and all suggestions or advice.

I'd like to start simple, so I'm thinking about a 14' v-hull aluminum boat with a trailer included in the sale. I'd like to buy used, so I am currently searching on Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace.

First question: As I have been looking at different listings, some boats and trailers have titles and some do not have titles. If I plan on registering my boat and trailer in Washington State, is it critical that they are both sold to me with titles?
Did you see this boat?
 

Josh

dead in the water
WFF Moderator
Good thread @Mike22.

I'm in a similar situation as far as "first time boat buyer with not a ton of experience". I've been bugging friends with similar questions.
 

Jockurr

Premium
Good thread @Mike22.

I'm in a similar situation as far as "first time boat buyer with not a ton of experience". I've been bugging friends with similar questions.
See "Power Boating for Dummies". That book, which was first published under just "Boating for Dummies will tell you what you need to know and when. That title is pretty much how we all started, except when Dad bailed out of the moving boat and yelled: "You're on your own now smartass".
You guys are on the right trail regarding where you plan on boating/fishing and your level of experience. There can be a lot of enjoyment and also peaceful mental decompression. Then again, it can be way more mental than you thought it was going to be. Sharpens the focus. Good Luck.
 

gt

Active Member
boat and trailer with titles; aluminum boat, welded not riveted; trailer, bunks not rollers; motor should have some record of maintenance. best of luck searching.
 

thatguyryry

Active Member
@Mike22, I have my boat posted here. The motor is solid if you are looking for something to put on another boat. Or you could put in the work and get a fishable boat for cheap.
 

Support WFF | Remove the Ads

Support WFF by upgrading your account. Site supporters benefits include no ads and access to some additional features, few now, more in the works. Info

Latest posts

Top