First Time Buyers Guide

First time boat buyersBuying your first boat from Burton Waters will be an exciting and enjoyable experience. We are here to help. The family owned business have been boating for over 40 years, selling, building boats for 25 years and have trained our sales team through their knowledge and experience to ensure they provide the service and help you will require. We will accompany you through your whole journey from the first conversations and viewings to the handover and that special moment when keys are handed over and the boat is yours.

Seventy percent of our customers are people who have come back to us time and time again. We have families return to upgrade through generations as they grow and become more adventurous. The children, who’s parents we sold boats, are now coming and buying boats of their own, and our name has been spread throughout the UK.

Burton Waters is one of the few companies that take part exchanges against your next boat, you will no doubt want to trade up at some point. Being able to take your boat in for part exchange makes the whole experience quick and easy, as simple as changing your car.

Burton Waters will give assistance and help with the following:

  • Finance if required
  • Insurance
  • RYA training
  • River licence
  • Moorings
  • Transport
  • Survey
  • Safety certificate if required (River use only)
  • Handover/getting to know your boat
  • Chandlery advice and discount on starter packs
  • Safety
  • Maintenance
  • Getting the boat into the water

Buying your first boat can be a daunting prospect. Burton Waters aim to make your first purchase an enjoyable and easy experience.  Our sales team have expert knowledge of the makes and models on the market and how they are suited to individuals and their requirements and their budgets.


The price of a boat will reflect its condition and specification.  Unless you are adept at DIY, you should buy the best-maintained boat you can afford.  There is no published price guide for second-hand boats, they will vary according to the age and size of the boat, the hull builder’s reputation and the quality of interior and exterior fittings.  Second-hand boats are cheaper, but maintenance is likely to cost more.  Burton Waters Boat Sales recommend that a second-and boat is surveyed before committing to a purchase.


Buying Your First Boat – The Burton Waters Boat Sales Way:

  • Have a look around our range of boats, speak to our sales staff, who will be happy to show you around the boats and answer any queries you may have.  They will give advice on the model of boat that will best quit your needs.
  • When you are happy, place a deposit on the vessel, sign a Contract and ask to see the title. Make Contract Subject to trial
  • Survey the vessel
  • Pay the balance of deposit within 7 days of survey
  • Pay the balance of funds, within 21 days of survey and insure your vessel and ensure it has the appropriate waterways licence
  • Handover of your vessel / delivery

Other costs to consider are

  • surveyors,
  • survey and transport lifting fees,
  • transport,
  • fuel (diesel or petrol),
  • Boat Safety Scheme Certificate, river licence (for inland waterways)
  • Insurance.

When seeking your first boat, here are a few questions you need to ask yourself:

Where do you plan to take the boat?

River? Sea? Or Both! We have a huge selection available, to show you the different boats to choose and compare from. Please don’t hesitate to ask questions, the more you know, the more confident you will be with your purchase.

How many people will use the boat and how often?

The first question you should ask yourself is “how am I going to use my boat?”. If it’s just for sunny afternoons or the occasional weekend, you may feel a small cruiser would be suitable. If you want to spend more time on your boat, you’ll probably appreciate the extra space.

What will you use the boat for?

Decide on the extent and quality of the fittings you need. If your cruising plans just involve day trips, maybe all you’ll need is somewhere to sit down. But for extended cruises, or residential use, you will probably want some more home comforts, , with a galley, dinette, cabins and heads.

If you have any questions about buying your first boat, please get in contact.


“Throughout the process we have had an excellent service, professional, knowledgeable and always available to us for questions. This was especially valuable as we’re new to boating The after sales service we’ve received has also been excellent, just the right level of looking after the boats in the cold weather. We feel like we’ve joined a family as opposed to just buying a boat” Anon, Derbyshire

“We purchased our very first boat through “Burton Waters Marina” and although the entire process was completed via telephone, email & fax communications, as there’s quite a distance between us (we live in Warrington & the boat was lying in North Wales!), their service was extremely pleasant, understanding, considerate, professional and courteous, regardless of which member of their team we spoke/communicated with” Mr & Mrs Dawes, Warrington

“I have known the family for over 22 years when we bought A used princess 32 in 1990 from Lincoln and have had 6 boats off Burton waters over the years, our current boat is Sealine T60 in the Mediterranean. We love boats who would of though it 22 years ago.”  Mr & Mrs Vikentiou

“We have been dealing with Burton Waters for a number of years now and we have experiences a very efficient and friendly service. Having purchased two boats from Burton Waters and on both occasions staff made the process very easy, we found them very helpful and professional and we would certainly have no hesitation in purchasing from Burton Waters in the future.”  Anon. Sheffield