Ways to Save Money on Boat Ownership Costs in Canada

If you’ve spent time on a family or friend's boat, or enjoyed a few weekends with a boat rental, you may have decided that you want a boat of your own. What may be the toughest question: how much boat can you afford? Different Canadian vessel manufacturers quote different prices according to the boat you choose. Getting organized and proactively answering this question before you buy is the best way to limit uncertainty and successfully move forward in maintaining your boat.

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These tips will be a good start as you decide how to manage your boat ownership expenses in the most cost-effective way:

1. Take full advantage of tax deductions.

There are a number of ways boats can help you reduce your tax burden at the end of the year. Your boat may count for a second home mortgage interest deduction:

  • In some cases they qualify as a business expense, boats that are chartered for profit may be a legitimate consideration;

  • If you use your boat to commute expenses could be deductible;

  • And when you’re ready to move on to a new boat you may be able to donate your old one to get an additional tax break.

Naturally you’ll want to make sure that any exemptions you file for are completely legal and legitimate. But that may well be the case, so a discussion with your accountant is in order.

2. Keep your boat and its power system properly maintained.

This includes things like making sure the bottom isn’t covered in growth and keeping the engine(s) in good running condition so you don’t lose efficiency. But keeping the boat well maintained will also pay off in the long run, because expensive break-downs and equipment failure becomes much less likely.

3. If your boat is on a trailer, fill the fuel tank up at a gas station on land.

Fuel costs are usually substantially higher at marinas, and boats hold a lot of fuel. However, whenever you fill up a trailer boat on land be sure to check the pumps and verify that you’re using the proper one. 

These are some of the ways to manage your boat ownership expenses.