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8 Ways on How to Increase the Value of Your Boat

In one of our previous articles we looked at How to Price your Boat for Sale, and this factor will of course depend on the condition of your boat and what features it offers buyers ahead of the competition. But a different question is, how do you add value to your boat?

How to Increase the Value of Your Boat?

Here we take a look at 8 creative ways you can add value to your boat, whether it’s a sailboat, motorboat, fishing boat or speed boat, even if you don’t plan to sell it right now. 


1. Perform regular maintenance

This is the most important part of maintaining value in your boat. A vessel left to the elements and not maintained will deteriorate quickly and do the opposite of increase value. While a normal maintenance schedule might already be something you have in place, be sure it includes simple but vital tasks such as washing the boat regularly to remove salt water and barnacles, as well as to prevent rust. You’ll want to change the boat’s oil and inspect the propeller regularly too. Otherwise, you should be keeping a look-out for any signs of damage or deterioration and acting upon those before they get worse. 


2. Install the latest in fancy electronics

Our ever-growing love of technology doesn’t stop at boats, and by installing some up-to-date gadgets you can really give it a modern make-over. Media control centres are gaining popularity and allow you to work all technology from one central point. Combine this with good quality speakers (or even some wakeboard/water skiing speakers on a watersports boat) and you’ll be turning up the tunes out at sea. And while many love their boat for the ability to escape land life for a while, others will be delighted by the option of onboard WiFi. With technologies improving all the time, you can have good speed coastal (and even blue water) internet access to run apps such as weather reports and navigation, as well as those all-important Instagram shots. 

Other than entertainment technology, modern electronics will not only make your boating life easier and safer (and you’ll be a much more successful fisherman), but certainly add value to your boat when it comes time to sell it. Think about investing in electronics such as a charter plotter, marine GPS system and fish finder. 


3. Upgrade the interior 

A swish looking interior will instantly add value to your boat and give you a comfortable and welcoming place to spend time in. Check out our blog on restoration tips and advice for ideas on how to upgrade fabrics and salon cushions, update the portholes or windows, or replace interior vinyl or carpets. Adding to your galley, if your boat has one, can also impress potential buyers when it comes time to sell, with new appliances and worktops creating a fresh and well-looked after vibe. 


4. Think about lighting

Lighting can create an upmarket atmosphere within your boat, whether they are hull lights which illuminate the water after dark - a popular feature on luxury superyachts - or more commonly inside the boat. You could consider adding them to the cockpit, or in the salon for a cool and stylish look. And, as they are relatively cheap to buy and install - and energy efficient - LED lights are a very worthwhile addition to your boat. They come in a white colour as well as the new-to-the-market blue hues for a truly contemporary look. Imagine taking the perfect boat selling video with your boat interior glowing invitingly at prospective buyers. 


4. Squeeze in a head

We all have to go and for many buyers and boat owners, where to spend a penny on a full day out at sea is an important consideration. If your boat is a small day cruiser and hasn’t got a head, consider installing even the simplest one to add value to your boat. You don’t need a lot of space to create a small area of privacy, a small cuddy or even some modesty curtains hung in a corner will allow you to secure a portable camping-style toilet for you and your guests to use during the day. This is very cheap, but well-thought-out addition could make or break a sale, and you don’t have to worry about complicated plumbing, you simply empty the cartridge back at port. 


5. Invest in a fresh boat canvas

Nothing screams tired and unloved more than a tatty boat canvas, and by investing in a shiny new one you will be making a big cosmetic impact on your boat. With wear and tear, you will find that you need a new one every five years, although with care and repairs it might last longer if you’re not planning to sell it right now. As far as selling your boat goes, a brand-new one is a very worthwhile investment and tells buyers that the boat is well-kept, clean and looked after. 

When choosing a canvas, consider how it will look (choose a colour to match the interior fabrics for example), as well as functionality, such as canvases with zipper windows or a higher section at the helm. There are many designs to choose from so use this opportunity to really make a statement. 


6. Update your equipment list 

Prospective buyers love a long list of additional equipment, so consider updating your supplies with new, up-to-date versions. We’ve looked at electronics above, but it’s also worth investing in everything from life jackets to ropes and lines and flares. All of it will make a buyer feel they are getting an excellent deal and ultimately add value to your boat. 


7. Tidy your electrics

This is a worthy exercise even if you have no intention of selling your boat, as well-maintained, organised electrics are safer for you as well as just being so satisfying. Give your boat an overhaul (it’s best to get a marine electrician in to do it) and replace old or tired wiring, route it properly with tubing and clips, and you could even use a shrink-wrapped connector over permanent connections to prevent any water ingress. Once it’s all labelled you’ll be gazing in satisfaction at your new streamlined wiring…and so will any buyers. 


8. Keep it pristine

While this might sound like an obvious point, keeping your boat clean and tidy, all year round does more than make it simply look good. In doing so you will spot any small scratches or areas of mould or damage and act on them fast. This will save you money in the long term as you nip problems in the bud before they grow into big and expensive problems, and your boat will always look in its best shape. It’s all too common that boat owners don’t put the time and effort into the upkeep of their boat and then when it comes time to sell it they have a whole host of issues to put right or drop the price to account for them. Put the elbow grease in now, fix those little issues, and you’ll get to enjoy your boat looking its best as well as keep the value up for when it comes time to sell it. 


Rightboat.com is one of the world’s largest and most well-respected boat selling and buying platforms, and with plenty of competition you need to keep your boat looking in tip-top condition to get the best price for it. Use our search engine to browse for boats similar to yours, and start dreaming about the next one. 

Find all boats for sale on rightboat.com, and price your boat accordingly.


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Written By: Samantha Wilson

Samantha Wilson has spent her entire life on and around boats, from tiny sailing dinghies all the way up to superyachts. She writes for many boating and yachting publications, top charter agencies, and some of the largest travel businesses in the industry, combining her knowledge and passion of boating, travel and writing to create topical, useful and engaging content.

Get in touch:Linkedin

More from: Samantha Wilson

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