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    Buying a Boat in Florida: What You Need to Know

    Buying a Boat in Florida: What You Need to Know

    If you are dreaming of buying a boat in Florida, you are not alone. Florida is one of the most popular boating destinations in the world, with over 22,000 boats for sale and countless waterways to explore. Whether you are looking for a fishing boat, a sailboat, a yacht, or anything in between, you can find it in the Sunshine State.

    But before you take the plunge and buy your dream boat, there are some things you need to know. Buying a boat in Florida involves some costs, paperwork, and regulations that you should be aware of. Here are some of the most important factors to consider when buying a boat in Florida.

    Sales Tax

    One of the biggest expenses that comes with buying a boat in Florida is sales tax. Florida imposes a six percent sales tax on the full purchase price of the boat, as well as any applicable local government taxes. This means that if you buy a $50,000 boat in Florida, you will have to pay at least $3,000 in sales tax, plus any additional local taxes.

    However, there are some ways to avoid or reduce the sales tax on a boat in Florida. Here are some of them:

    • Negotiate with the seller to have the sales tax included in the purchase price of the boat. This way, you will not have to pay any additional taxes when you register the vessel with the state.
    • Buy a boat that is already registered in Florida. This way, you will not be responsible for paying any back taxes owed on the vessel.
    • Lease a boat instead of buying one outright. In some cases, this can help you avoid paying sales tax on a boat altogether.
    • Buy a boat out of state and have it delivered to a location outside of Florida. This way, you will not have to pay Florida sales tax on the purchase. However, you may have to pay sales tax in the state where you buy the boat or where you register it.
    • Register the boat in another state where the sales tax is lower or nonexistent. However, this may only work if you plan to keep the boat out of Florida for most of the year.

    If you do end up having to pay sales tax on a boat in Florida, be sure to keep all of your receipts and documentation organized so that you can get a refund when you file your taxes next year.


    Sales Tax

    Another thing you need to do when buying a boat in Florida is register it with the state. Registration is required for all motorized boats and sailboats over 16 feet long that operate on Florida waters. Registration fees vary depending on the size and type of the boat, but they are generally affordable and renewable every year.

    To register your boat in Florida, you will need to provide proof of ownership, such as a bill of sale or a title. You will also need to pay the registration fee and obtain a registration number and decal for your boat. You will have to display these on both sides of your boat’s bow.

    If you buy a boat from a dealer in Florida, they will usually handle the registration process for you. If you buy a boat from a private seller or out of state, you will have to register it yourself within 30 days of purchase. You can register your boat online or at any county tax collector’s office.



    Unlike car insurance, boat insurance is not mandatory in Florida. However, it is highly recommended that you get insurance for your boat, especially if it is valuable or financed. Boat insurance can protect you from financial losses due to accidents, theft, vandalism, fire, storms, or other hazards.

    Boat insurance policies vary depending on the type and value of your boat, as well as your desired coverage and deductible. Some common types of coverage include:

    • Liability coverage: This covers any damages or injuries that you cause to others with your boat.
    • Collision coverage: This covers any damages to your own boat due to an accident with another vessel or object.
    • Comprehensive coverage: This

    Hi, I’m Adam Smith

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