Can I Ditch My Mortgage and Live on a Boat

Do you dream of leaving dry land to live on a boat? Before you pack your bags, it is important to know what to expect from life on the water.

Plan Ahead
Having a plan is the most important step in making the journey from land to sea. Here are some important things to consider:

  • Time.  Are you going away for a year or moving permanently? You should also consider any children or pets when planning to move onto the boat. This decision is crucial and must be made before you plan anything else.
  • The boat.  If you don't already have a boat, you should do some research and figure out which boat makes the most sense for you. This will be dictated by the time period you intend to stay on the water. You should also decide where you're going to keep your boat and where you will stop for supplies if you plan on traveling.
  • Supplies. Don't assume that because you're leaving your house, the days of housekeeping are over. Your boat will need various repairs, so plan on bringing a tool kit. You'll also need to stock up on food and provisions, because you can't always "run out to the store" to get something.
  • Weather.  Weather poses a huge threat to living happily on a boat. Make sure you can both access and understand important forecast data and know what to do during severe weather.
  • Communication.  If you're leaving for an extended period of time, you may want to consider using a mail-handling service. Make sure your cell phone has a one-rate plan and set up an Internet network, if you don't plan on stopping on land often.
  • Conservation.  You will need to downsize significantly and learn how to maximize storage space. You will also need to learn how to efficiently conserve power and water.

Practice Makes Perfect
If you think you've got everything planned out, take the boat out for a test run. Try going out for a couple of weeks and see how things go. You may find yourself running into problems that you hadn't encountered from shorter trips.

Talk to people who have lived on the water before. Read blogs and magazines about life on a boat and make sure you take notes! Living on a boat can be exciting and adventurous, but it will only be enjoyable if you go out prepared.

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