Shopping & Style

Fall Is Boating Season, Here’s How to Buy One

Fall weather evokes a feeling that inspires pumpkin picking, leaf cleanup and football tailgating. This time of year, however, few people are considering a boat purchase. But like any item purchased at the end of a season, a boat purchase post-summer can mean substantial savings, less buyer competition and fewer boaters on the water. For anyone in the market for a boat, here are a few tips from Matt Levy of Modern Yachts:

1. There’s no substitute for touring a boat in person. “This is when a buyer makes a connection with a boat,” Levy observes. “The time you spend looking and touching the boat is well spent, because you can see the boat’s design, its amenities and its power—all vital assessments for a buyer,” he adds. “And be sure to bring a list of ‘needs and wants’ when boat shopping.”

2. If you plan to buy from a dealer, call ahead to make sure they have the right inventory. If the dealer does not have the boat in stock, he can provide materials that show layout, styles, amenities and options. Levy adds, “It’s also important that a dealer representative works with you so that the boat you select realistically meets your needs.”

3. Consider how you will transport and store your boat. “A dealer purchase means that you may be able to store your boat in a slip onsite at the dealer location in-season,” Levy notes. “On-water dealerships have that flexibility.” Off-season, boats can be dry docked or warehoused, dependent on the owner’s needs. That, too, can be arranged through a dealer.

4. Select an established, reputable dealership. “Reputation and history are very important. But there are a few other things that buyers may not think about when choosing a boat dealership,” Levy says.

a. An on-water dealer location. You can demo boats, see a wide range of models, enjoy storage options, and at some dealers, like Modern Yachts, you’ll pair up with dealer-appointed captains who provide complimentary post-purchase instruction and cruises.

b. Experience. Many Long Island dealers have been in the business for years and are experts at understanding boat design and function. Modern Yachts, for instance, has served Long Island boaters for more than 50 years.

c. Selection. Experienced boat dealers recognize that family boaters may not want a boat designed for fishing—and vice versa. “It’s crucial that a dealership offers a range of models that meets the needs of boaters,” Levy stated.

d. Service team. “With an established dealership, you’re getting a qualified team of professionals, who have been trained and certified to work on specific boats, with specific engines,” Levy says.

e. Dealers know the waters. It’s one thing to buy a boat, but quite another to navigate through waters that have hazards, shoals and high-traffic volume. “Dealers are one of the best resources for boaters seeking cruising destinations and safe passage,” Levy notes.

Modern Yachts has locations in Hampton Bays, Mattituck and Westhampton Beach. For more information, visit

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