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How Much Does Owning a Yacht Cost?

Depending on the type of yacht that you own, the costs of owning a yacht vary. Calculation of the costs of yachting is a topic that many people have tried to tackle, and there are a lot of variables that can make these calculations difficult. In this article, we will break down the costs of owning a yacht, and how those costs vary based on the size and expanse of the yacht itself. There are hidden expenses that also factor in.

The Size of the Yacht in Question Matters

Smaller yachts are relatively cheaper. The costs of the yacht when you purchase it is dependent upon the size of the yacht, and the size also impacts the way in which you care for the yacht. Yachts need to be refitted and refurbished, and the more area you have, the more refitting costs you are going to incur. If you have, for example, a 170-foot yacht, you will likely need to repaint it at least once every five or six years. The rest of the refitting and renovations also require money, and you can count on at least half a million in expenses when all of this is factored in.

People Cost Money, Too

Hiring a crew might not be something that immediately jumps to your mind when you think of yacht care, and having a “crew” isn’t like the old-timey pirate movies. The crew, in your yacht’s case, keeps the technological and innovative aspects of the yacht from breaking down. If you want to commercialize your yacht, plan on hiring at least one crew member per guest. Even for a smaller boat, this will add up. Yachts are always in need of updates and renovations, and a crew will ensure that you have the tools you need to keep your investment in good shape.


If you have a yacht, you need a place to put it. You need a shipyard, and you need one that will make sure that your needs are met without risking damage to your yacht. Yachts need to be taken care of regularly, and docking is just the half of it. You also will need to pay for the yacht to be housed and readied for the next use.

Rule of Thumb

As with anything, there is some rule of thumb that you can follow when considering how much it costs to own a yacht. According to Forbes Magazine, the rule is “one million per meter.” For each meter of yacht, expect to pay at least $1,000,000. This is assuming that your yacht is average and not outlandishly-styled or requiring of special provisions. Forbes also noted that the costs of building and owning a yacht have increased dramatically; what used to cost only $1,000 per meter a century ago now costs $1,000,000. The increase has been fascinating, yet not unexpected, as yachts grow more and more advanced.

If you’re building a yacht, you will need to spend a lot.

If you’re building a yacht, you will need a project manager. While the costs of the build itself (materials, designers, crew, etc.) seem obvious enough, you also need to factor in the costs of hiring and retaining a project manager who can ensure that the project is done correctly. You will need to settle any cost disputes with the yard in question, as you don’t want to become embroiled in a conflict over money with the shipyard.

Owning a yacht costs a lot—the rule of thumb is generally $1,000,000 per meter. However, it is worth it. Owning a yacht is an amazing experience; building your own yacht, even more so.


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