Steve Sawford Marine Ltd
Sailing For All
To Buy or Not to Buy
a New Hansa or Sprint 15 NOW?
Yes, definitely! Now is absolutely the best time to buy a new boat.
Why am I saying this? While some might know me as the go-to guy for boat repairs and a part of the Dart15/Sprint15 Association since 1991, my primary business is as the UK supplier of Hansa class sailboats.
In this role, I am deeply involved in the export and import of both new boats and boat-building materials, and I can see a bubble approaching which means a surge in material costs and shipping is on the way. And I want to warn my fellow sailors who are in the market for a new boat to take advantage of this small window of opportunity and buy now before the prices skyrocket.
The marine trade is seeing a three-fold increase in the cost of shipping and materials, but these price rises have not yet fully hit the UK consumer. As an example, my next shipping container of Hansa sailboats is costing me three times more than usual. Previously, I was charged £2000 to ship boats in from Singapore, but for my latest shipment I am having to fork out a whopping £9000!
Material costs are exploding too. For boats built in the UK, the petrochemical industry is driving the prices of resins upwards, especially as more costly eco-friendly resins are now being required in the marine trade. Imports of fibreglass from India and China are subject to increasing shipping costs, and there are delays across the sector which will push prices even further.
Right now, the UK market prices have not yet suffered from these rising costs because we are still using up boat stocks that are already here and ready to go. Replacement stock will be subject to the large increases in materials and shipping, and while these rises may only be temporary until the market stabilises, I think they will be substantial.
Having been in the market for a new boat myself for the last year or so, I have decided the time to wait is over and I will be placing my order at the boat show.
And with a new Sprint 15, I am hoping to successfully defend my inland title and maybe even bag myself the national championship too. If you are thinking about buying a new Sprint 15, you need to get it this year rather than next so you can have a chance to get past me.
Similarly, if you are Sailability club looking to increase your Hansa fleet, or a sailor ready to buy your own boat, I only have a few 303s left of my existing stock and some second-hand 2.3s, so urge you to contact me soon.