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Couples Sessions — Are You And Your Partner Ready To Buy A Boat?

Many people all over the world dream of owning their own boat – but few follow their heart and go for it. Even if you’re the one who really wants to buy the boat, it can be hard to convince your other half to be on board. That’s why today, I’m going to walk you through everything you need to know about buying a boat with your partner!

We’ve recently held our first couple’s workshop, designed to get partners aligned with the boat ownership conversation.

Let me tell you the back story of how this got started and made such a big difference for one ‘boat decider’ who had been wondering and thinking about buying a boat for more than 10 years.

It all started with an online post in a boating forum from a boat broker a year or so ago.

Domestic Anchor Problem Before you Buy a Boat

The post was headed up: “Domestic Anchor Problem”

For those not so nautically minded let me quickly explain. A ‘domestic anchor’ is a reference to an issue between partners about buying a boat. Anchor being the holding fast aspect or NO way, and domestic being the partner. It’s most often cited as a woman who is seen to be “domestic anchor”.

Buying a boat is, all in all, a pretty complicated & challenging endeavor in many ways. It’s an up and down emotional ride through the five distinct stages of buying a boat. And one of the joys of boat ownership is the sharing of experiences, those priceless boating experiences and creating memories of a lifetime, with family and loved ones. So, having your partner on board is high on the list of priorities for many people!

In the next few minutes, I’m going to show you some tips on what you can do to get your partner on board and the exact steps to take in aligning you and your partners’ goals and objectives along the way. Sound good?

Help! “Domestic Anchor Problem” and the boat broker goes on to say: The husband had been looking for a boat for more than a year, it’s his first real boat (over 50ft), it’s perfect, he loves it and it’s a fantastic deal but the wife says ‘no way, he’s not getting a boat and she’s not moving from that position’.

No Way, Jose

She’s Not Moving From The ‘No Way Jose’ Position

You’ve probably heard this before, so what to do? And then our social media keyboard warriors weigh in on the debate and provide a limited range of options, by far the most popular is finding a new wife.

But seriously, if you think about it, this is not only a pretty common scenario but also one that is an awful position for all parties to find themselves in. And the point of this posting is so that you NEVER find yourself in this position.

He’s Super Excited, Thrilled, Pumped

Imagine this — the husband will be super excited, thrilled, pumped… and there’s this trepidation in the back of his mind, and ‘wham’ then hugely let down, no doubt angry, and bitterly disappointed.

The wife may be incensed, angry and terrified of what might happen, or what she fears is about to happen. She may be scared of family safety or finances. Not a happy household and this isn’t something that will go away quickly.

Then there is the boat broker — he’s beside himself, tearing his hair out, seeing his deal and commission going south.

Easy Solution — Find Another Wife

Now the keyboard warriors are weighing in with their good advice, saying, mostly, and unhelpfully, divorce the wife, leave her behind, and with a nice boat like that you’ll easily find another, and variations on this theme.

A few more helpful people say, take them out on the water, convince her of the lifestyle, get some drink into them, take the contract along ( and I’d imagine this is exactly what the wife is terrified of!).

Another sensible suggestion to find out her real concerns or needs, but if all else fails, the suggestion invariably goes back to the new wife theme. Another person offers the idea of them buying a boat she is more comfortable with, perhaps a smaller boat.

While the comments are mostly lighthearted and said in jest, there is still a serious undertone and implication, and they’re all in a position that none of us would enjoy very much, no matter who you were in this example.

So how do we avoid being in this position? Or, how do we ‘convince the wife’ so that the husband gets what he so desperately wants?

Don’t Get Into This Position In The First Place!

It’s easy to say with hindsight, don’t let yourself get into this situation in the first place… and in this short blog, I’m going to show you how you can do this — avoid getting yourself into this situation in the first place.

OK, let’s dig right in!

Avoiding getting into this sticky situation in the first place is part of Nautical Know How — what we call ‘Understanding the traps and tricks on the journey to boat ownership, without high stress or costly mistakes.’

The Wife Got Left Behind

There are 5 stages that a new boater goes through on the journey to boat ownership. The first stage may take years or decades, and many people may never move from this first stage. That’s OK (and convincing her isn’t going to be the best strategy, neither is hood-winking her with a drink).

Ground Breaking First-Time Boat Buyer Research

The wife in this situation may be in the first stage, or not even there.

On the other hand, the husband is clearly well past the first stage, and in fact, has moved all the way through to the 4th stage, over the last 1 year. For various reasons, that we don’t know, the wife got left behind.

And the result is telling… conflict, unhappiness, fighting, potential divorce, anger, and accusations. You can imagine what it would be like, a terrible situation to be in and to have created.

How To Avoid Ever Being In This Situation

So, if you want to avoid this, here’s a simple idea and a clear step by step path, with 3 simple steps to take now ;

Understand who you are, boating wise… what does this mean? It means...

  1. What type of boater you are, and yes there are 6 types of new boaters! What type of boater your partner would be (if they were going to be a boater!)

  2. Recognise why this is so important (it matters)

  3. Find out Where you’re at on the boat buying journey. Where your partner is on the boat buying journey. Understand its critical impact on your (and your partner’s) dreams and goals and how to align them.

Simple, But Never Easy!

While it might sound simple, and it is, of course, it’s often not easy. But it’s a lot easier to do this at the beginning of the journey than have to deal with the fallout like we see in this example.

If you want to find out more, and how all the steps in our ‘Boat Searchers Blueprint to a Boating Lifestyle’ applies to you, drop us an email.

Effective Couples Navigation is part of Module 2 of the Blueprint (see below).

Effective Couples Navigation is critical for:

  • New boat buyers or those deciding if the boating lifestyle is right for them

  • Partners, men, and women who wish to ‘get on the same page’ with their boating goals

  • Those who have the ‘boat spark’ ignited, and want to cut through information overwhelm with a clear step by step path

  • Partners of those who have the ‘boating spark’ ignited, and want to support, but are not sure how to get that.

Boat Brokers Are Not Created Equally

The thing I really want you to take away from this is not all boat brokers are created equal and Boat Advisers are a new breed of Digital Boat Brokers.

So what this means to you in your boating life is, more and more first time boat buyers need expert help and assistance, such as providing a time and a place for discovery and discussion.

This is most useful when there is information overwhelm, long term indecision and complexity in the buying or deciding decision.

Boat Brokers of the Past are Becoming Quickly Extinct

Finding a boat together can be a thrilling and sometimes stressful process, but it can be rewarding when you're ultimately able to buy one. So we hope our advice has been valuable, and that you have not just enjoyed reading it, but have also come away with some interesting ideas to convince your partner.

Note: Want more transparency, neutrality, and honesty when it comes to finding the right boat?

We're here to help!

We understand that it can be hard to find the right boat for you, especially when there are so many options out there.

We also know that sometimes things can get overwhelming. That's why our team of experts is here to help you find your perfect match.

We'll guide you through each step of the process so you can find the boat that's right for you, without any stress or hassle.

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