How the economy looks to a yacht broker

One of our neighbors refused to go to medical school and be like everyone else in the neighborhood. He needs to earn money without practicing medicine, so he sells yachts. I found him putting his new Porsche 911 GTS ($200,000 and 1.5-year wait) away in his garage and asked if the wind had gone out of the yacht world’s sails. “Yachts that cost under $2 million have taken a big hit from rising interest rates,” he responded. “They’re down about 25 percent from their peak a year ago. Anything over $5 million is steady. Those are cash buyers and prices haven’t moved.”

Let’s poke into the market for “mega yachts”… Here’s one whose price was cut by 10 percent in December:

Very few of the listings show price drops, however. Or the price drop isn’t enough to pay for floor mats:

The $1 million yachts for kulaks, however, seem to be trending down:

I sorted by “old to new” for listings and found a classic that had dropped from $2.6 million to $1.7 million:

(The ship was fully restored about 10 years ago.)

What if you want to buy a Porsche instead, just like our neighbor’s? There are none available within 500 miles of South Florida:

Maybe there is still some room for inflation, at least for Porsches.

12 thoughts on “How the economy looks to a yacht broker

  1. Porsche is doing well from what I’ve been able to gather from my other car sales friends. I have a good buddy from high school (who also didn’t go to medical school) who just bought a 2009 Turbo Cabriolet 4-Wheel Turning and Driving Supermobile. It may be used but it’s immaculate.
    He’s not “rich” but lives in a nicer-than-average house in the Boston suburbs. Two kids. He works in Tech doing something related to security and the wife is a health care insurance specialist/analyst/auditor.

    Porsche’s factory in Zuffenhausen is a marvel of logistics, automation, “clean” manufacturing, just-in-time production, and minimal humans needed. The 911 series (and others) can be so extensively customized that only once out of something like a million cars does are build sheets and specifications identical. Yet they always have the right parts and pieces in the right place at the right time. The powertrains are assembled separately from the chassis/body and they are joined at the “marriage point” where the two parallel assembly lines meet.

    From watching the video, you get the impression that Porsche wastes NOTHING – time, materials, human labor, energy, storage space, etc., etc. They use every part of the Euro.

    In five parts:

  2. I bought my sailboat for around 200,000 5 years ago. At the height of covidiocracy I received offers of the low 500,000s. I suspect I could get in the mid 300,000s now. I put about 50 grand into the boat and lots of work myself. Not bad for this bird brain.

    • Nothing beats boat yoga! 🙂

      *have moving DC panel to a saner location, remanufacturing water tank, milling a new boom hinge, and a lot more under my belt*

      .. at least you don’t need to waste 2000 hrs being an apprentice, like you’d have to do (besides passing exams for A&P certs) if you want to be able to do non-trivial repairs on your own certified aircraft.

    • You could just spend the 2000 hours assembling a kit plane, then you would be free to do all the work you want on it!

    • Experimental category (that’s how amateur-built a/c are officially classified) comes, unfortunately, with a bunch of restrictions. (Besides flat-out prohibition on any commercial use, a typical set of annoying restrictions for experimental amateur-built include no flying over densely populated areas or in congested airways, and no IFR).

      Also FAA hates when people try to convert certified a/c into experimental to escape costly inspection and repair/maintenance requirements. So… yep, one way or another they will have you to spend a year full-time if you want to be able to fix your own aircraft.

      FAA was absolutely the worst disaster to befell aeronautics. That merry bunch of bureaucrats effectively stalled the progress, so practically all general aviation flies airframes designed in 70s. Magnetos and AM radios are still common. And don’t let me start ranting about ATC and avionics. Even freaking METARs and NOTAMs are still in telegraph era (though NOTAMs are happily woke now, because saying “airmen” is sexist).

    • averros! Fake news. I fly my experimental aircraft IFR all the time and over populated areas.

  3. Similar phenomenon to Calif* houses. Anything over $2 million is bought with cash so prices haven’t declined for most houses. Anything under $2 million is the borrower ghetto. Most of the $2 million club is classmates of lions who didn’t have student loan debt & got in during the 2001 recession.

  4. > new Porsche 911 GTS ($200,000 and 1.5-year wait)

    FYI, the waiting list of delivery of Porsches is partly due to the loss of 2 cargo ships totalling ~10,000 cars (1 sunk in a storm, 1 burned from a car battery).

    • For a car which is reliable and fun to drive. Oh, and they are about the only brand which still sells manual in US. (My g/f absolutely refuses to switch to automatic… and I absolutely refuse to date girls who cannot handle a stick:)

    • Phil: I’m with you! If you’re the kind of environmentalist/sustainability advocate who can afford to push a 6-year-old 36,000 square-foot house into a landfill (see ), maybe. But for the rest of us, unless we have enough years of Joe Biden+Democrat Congress to turn $200,000 into the price of a Diet Coke, $200,000 is too much. I don’t want something that expensive at risk of door dings in the Walmart parking lot. Car and Driver cuts off eligibility for “10 best” at $110,000 and I think that is a reasonable Bideninflation adjustment.

      So if I wanted to drive a car from one of Adolf Hitler’s friends, it would have to be a Porsche Boxster or some Volkswagen and not a 911.

    • (The Car and Driver review of the Boxster is not promising. “We would never forgive this in any other car. The screen is tiny, the cargo room is stingy, backup cameras are grainy, and the cupholders are functionally nonexistent. Yet it’s worth spilling coffee on your best pants for a chance to commute in any of Porsche’s 718 variants.” I wouldn’t want a car that can’t hold at least carry-on luggage for two people, which the C8 Corvette can do (two standard roll-on bags plus briefcases or backpacks). That enables the car to be driven to either a commercial or a GA airport and a weekend trip to be accomplished. I also like having electronics that are at least as good as in a Toyota Camry or Honda Accord. GM software is actually better, I think, than what Toyota/Honda build.)

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