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Tassie Devil

Overseas owner Lay up options?

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Hi everyone.

 

I’m seriously looking into purchasing a UK based Narrow Boat to use for 6 months per year, then returning to Australia for 6 months on a yearly basis.

 

I’ve retired early from the Military and don’t need to work so constant cruising to see the UK is my plan.

 

I believe that outright purchase of my own boat would be a better option than lease or boat rental, as the boat is always an asset which can be sold should my situation change, I can customise it to my liking and won’t need to deal with other owners etc.

 

My question is to other Non UK citizen owners with Narrow boats.

 

What do you do with your boat for the period that you have to leave the UK due to Visa requirements?

 

Thanks for any guidance and advice re this ownership issue and best wishes everyone.

 

Ken

 

136053D2-9640-4306-BDE8-B3BF5A06D872.jpeg

Edited by Tassie Devil
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Welcome to the forum. We found this forum invaluable for information for our now completed period of changing hemispheres every autumn. With the forum you will have to tolerate deviations from topic, and a rise in grumpyness as the northern winter weather curtails canal boating. However even grumpy forum members are generally pleasant and very helpful in the flesh. It is just English winter weather that can evidently get under their skin. Something you will not need to worry about.

We had a tremendous time canal boating in the UK and only sold up after we had covered most of the network and being ultimately time limited, decided there were other things to do and see whilst still fit enough.

In answer to your prime question. We inherited a mooring with a canal society from the previous antipodean owner. We payed a prortional amount of their annual leisure mooring fee. For the society a six and a bit month income on their limited layup berths was preferable then only receiving income for the couple of months in the dead of winter. As a society of keen boaters they did look after their boats and so boat appearance was a consideration before offering any winter mooring provision.

If you are intending to do this for a number of years then owning, is the way to go. Narrowboat world publishes an annual with a useful map and an outline of costs except the last one I saw ommitted the cost of replacement batteries which in our case was about £150 a year but in big gulps like a lot of other of boat expenses. To your overall budget you must add brokeridge and VAT on that as well as depreciation and currency movement.  Because of Financial Market requirements and money laundering sensitivities opening a UK bank account and even finding an insurer for the boat can be a hassle. For us, what worked, was that we opened and operated a local account with the HSBC in Auckland a year or so in advance which definitely facilitated us opening a UK HSBC account just prior to buying our boat.

The fact I still follow and contribute to this forum is a measure of the enjoyment my wife and I had spending all our allowed time each year on our boat ditch crawling around England.

Edited by DandV
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Thanks for the reply D&V.

Thats a great tip re the International bank account.

I would be very flexible re times of the year I’d want the boat, and Winter cruising is high on my list, but I’m aware of canal closures etc.

Thanks again.

 

Ken

p.s This photo is just now, out my windscreen in Devonport Tasmania, across Bass Strait for all those going through Winter induced grumpiness!😉

 

E50BF7B0-4B08-4AD2-85A4-64AB4265ABD7.jpeg

Edited by Tassie Devil
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If you search through the forums you will find many recent threads.

im not being grumpy just advising you!

 

i could be grumpy as its currently 34 degrees in colac and a bit hot.

 

the hsbc bank are a bunch of thieves inept and irresposible, likely to send credit and debit cards to incorrect addresses and interogate you endlessly about financial sources, whilst supporting global money washing abroad. They will deal with you though. They are particularly cagey about po box addresses. Great if you live in the bush with no oz post service like we did.

 

we found the yorkshire bank via i think an nab link better but not sure if that avenue is open as i think they sold the ybs. Certainly we set up account here and wandered into a yorkshire bank there to pick up our cards etc about 4 years ago.

 

i have put much info re leaving the boat on other threads so have a look. 

 

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Hi Ken,

I am a UK citizen living in Asia and have the same retirement plan as yourself, 6 to 9 months in UK on a Narrowboat and 6 to 3 months (winters) in Asia. Although I have no experience on the canals to speak of I have been asking the same question on the form and also during a hands on boat holiday last year.

Most boaters recommended a winter mooring where the boat could be left afloat in a marina but this concerns me should there be flooding, leakage or heavy rain while I was away.

One boater in Banbury told me of a Marina that offered out of water storage including lift out and lift in by crane, the Marina name is “Aqua Marina” I googled this name and found there web page with prices and other information.

There is also several threads here relating to what needs to be done/prepared on a boat before laying up for a prolonged period but nothing I could see that would be overly difficult.

Cheers Mick

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Thank you Mick.

l appreciate the info.

 

Same to you Roland. I’ll discuss options with the NAB.

 

Best wishes fellas.

 

Ken

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5 hours ago, Tassie Devil said:

This photo is just now, out my windscreen in Devonport Tasmania, across Bass Strait for all those going through Winter induced grumpiness!

 

E50BF7B0-4B08-4AD2-85A4-64AB4265ABD7.jpeg

 

5 hours ago, DandV said:

And the view from where I am sitting just now.  in an Auckland Heatwave 27deg, 

20190129_153233.jpg

 

In what universe do you two think these two posts might in any way cheer us UK boaters up as our winter progresses to its most dreary months?  ;)

 

Since I live here and use my boat throughout the year (also perks of being ex-military) I can't offer much helpful advice on this subject. However, there's a fair few doing exactly what you're aiming at so it's certainly doable.  I wish you success in your search, which you're tackling in the right order by working out how and where to keep your boat before buying one! Stick with us Tassie - you'll find a lot of useful advice here when searching for and buying your boat when that time comes too.

 

So welcome to the forum, but just ease up on the blue sky and sunshine photos - some of us are clinging on by our finger nails! :(

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I know my lifestyle choice will have to end eventually and i will have to do a british winter again. I left in nov last year and im back in march in flanders riding a bike  with a bunch of australians this year. ( guided tour!!!)

cant reinforce to them enough how cold and wet it will be ... 

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HI TD,

Have a look at Areandare blog, the husband is a Kiwi (wife is English), they lived in NZ, but had a boat over here and cruised during the UK summers months. Now they have moved to the UK and live on Areandare and trade on the canals. They let someone else buy the boat for them before they came back to the UK, purchasing through ANB? boats near Crick. Lots of info and probably sound advice.

Good Luck, I think you may find mooring cost high, especially in the South, 

 

L.

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6 hours ago, roland elsdon said:

we found the yorkshire bank via i think an nab link better...

Currently in the process of merging with Virgin Money. I have no idea what effect that will have on their operations at this time. 

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8 hours ago, Tassie Devil said:

Thanks for the reply D&V.

Thats a great tip re the International bank account.

I would be very flexible re times of the year I’d want the boat, and Winter cruising is high on my list, but I’m aware of canal closures etc.

Thanks again.

 

Ken

p.s This photo is just now, out my windscreen in Devonport Tasmania, across Bass Strait for all those going through Winter induced grumpiness!😉

 

E50BF7B0-4B08-4AD2-85A4-64AB4265ABD7.jpeg

I don't like the colour of that grass.  

 

Here's a photo of a narrowboat going past the Sydney Opera House, or something that looks quite like it ...

 

flordaora2.jpg

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7 minutes ago, Scholar Gypsy said:

I don't like the colour of that grass.  

 

Here's a photo of a narrowboat going past the Sydney Opera House, or something that looks quite like it ...

 

flordaora2.jpg

Wearing an undefaced Blue as well...

Not many NBs do that.

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12 minutes ago, Scholar Gypsy said:

Here's a photo of a narrowboat going past the Sydney Opera House, or something that looks quite like it ...

:clapping::clapping::clapping:

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15 minutes ago, OldGoat said:

Wearing an undefaced Blue as well...

Not many NBs do that.

I am 99% sure Terry is a member of the Royal Harwich Yacht club, as part of his stick and duster boating,  So only slightly defaced.

 

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4 hours ago, Mick in Bangkok said:

Hi Ken,

I am a UK citizen living in Asia and have the same retirement plan as yourself, 6 to 9 months in UK on a Narrowboat and 6 to 3 months (winters) in Asia. Although I have no experience on the canals to speak of I have been asking the same question on the form and also during a hands on boat holiday last year.

Most boaters recommended a winter mooring where the boat could be left afloat in a marina but this concerns me should there be flooding, leakage or heavy rain while I was away.

One boater in Banbury told me of a Marina that offered out of water storage including lift out and lift in by crane, the Marina name is “Aqua Marina” I googled this name and found there web page with prices and other information.

There is also several threads here relating to what needs to be done/prepared on a boat before laying up for a prolonged period but nothing I could see that would be overly difficult.

Cheers Mick

I think you're worrying too much.  There are plenty of boats moored in boatyards, marinas, mooring sites which haven't seen their owners in years.  They're still floating.  Generally, other moorers at the site will keep an eye on an unattended boat without even thinking about it.  You can also fit an automatic bilge pump and have a solar panel to power it.

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Debdale wharf marina do long term and seasonal hardstanding. 

http://www.debdalewharf.co.uk

 

They have a large cradle crane so lifting in and out is routine for them. 

 

Note:appears to be a problem with opening menus on their Web site via Android. May work from Windows. 

Eta:A bit of guesswork gave me this

http://www.debdalewharf.co.uk/services/

Edited by reg
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Hello again Ken,

 

spoke to you earlier on a different thread.  We used HSBC but didn’t need to go down the route of getting a uk account - just used their global account which allows us to move money between up to 5 currencies (we have uk, japan and NZ as ours).  As far as I can tell there is no restriction on amounts allowed in the accounts.

 

Like others I plan on retiring to the cut sometime in the not too distant future and actually prefer winter cruising.  15 consequtive days of 30+ and only 2mm of rain this year is quite enough and we are on the cooler/wetter coast, certainly not bush.  I’m fortunate that I don’t have to worry about visa’s though as I have dual nationality.

 

I would agree with the earlier comment about sticking with this forum to ask questions and do your research.  Yes you might get the odd bit of stick (especially if you post in the VP), but I have learnt so much over the last couple of years which has made my planning so much easier, and on the whole they are a great bunch of people.  

 

It was strongly recommended to me to spend as much time as I could on hire boats before buying not just to make sure its for you but to find out your own likes and dislikes to look out for in your own boat.  Like you we are used to the small space life having done the RV thing but a NB is quite different.  I would recommend you do the same if you can - I for one haven’t been put off, it can just be an expensive holiday having to commute from this side of the world!

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I know one American who use to leave her boat at Debdale Wharf for the winter months, out of the water so no licence required, They had it back in the water and ready to go when she returned

 

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8 minutes ago, ditchcrawler said:

I know one American who use to leave her boat at Debdale Wharf for the winter months, out of the water so no licence required, They had it back in the water and ready to go when she returned

 

I did wonder why there were so many out of the water when I was there a few weeks ago - now I know.  Even better that you don’t need a licence.  You lIve and learn.

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2 hours ago, doratheexplorer said:

I think you're worrying too much.  There are plenty of boats moored in boatyards, marinas, mooring sites which haven't seen their owners in years.  They're still floating.  Generally, other moorers at the site will keep an eye on an unattended boat without even thinking about it.  You can also fit an automatic bilge pump and have a solar panel to power it. 

Thanks for the reassurance, this is a learning curve for me

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3 hours ago, Scholar Gypsy said:

I don't like the colour of that grass.  

 

Here's a photo of a narrowboat going past the Sydney Opera House, or something that looks quite like it ...

 

flordaora2.jpg

 

I never knew the Rochdale Canal passed quite so close to Oxford Road station!

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1 minute ago, Mick in Bangkok said:

Thanks for the reassurance, this is a learning curve for me

Returning to your point:

 

" Most boaters recommended a winter mooring where the boat could be left afloat in a marina but this concerns me should there be flooding, leakage or heavy rain while I was away. "

 

Winter moorings only make sense if you know it's only winter that you'll leave the boat.  If you just want a basic mooring to keep the boat then get an unserviced towpath mooring for under £1000pa. 

 

Canals, by and large don't flood.  And if they do, it's a boat!!!  It's the best thing to have in a flood!

 

Buy a decent boat and get it surveyed and leakage won't be an issue.

 

I mentioned an auto bilge pump for heavy rain, however if you're really bothered then get a boat with a trad stern and a tug style front and there's no way for the rain to get in.

 

Lifting a boat in and out is a right pain to be doing regularly. 

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