Yacht Depreciation Guide: 6 Helpful Examples (With Numbers)

Whether you buy a new yacht or an older yacht, you’ll likely have to deal with depreciation.

It is helpful to know how much your yacht will depreciate over time. Owning the perfect yacht can be one of life’s greatest pleasures, but it is not free.

This post analyzes three ranges of yacht sizes to identify depreciation that is typical for each of these different sizes of yachts.

Note that these values have been determined from listing prices, and your actual cost could be lower if you are a good negotiator:

How Much Does Each Yacht Size Depreciate In Value?

Before we dive into the examples for each yacht size, here are the numbers we came up with during our research.

These are values from 2021:

Yacht Type
1-Year Value Lost (average)
3-Year Value Lost (average)
7-Year Value Lost (average)
30-40 ft. Yachts
19%
28%
45%
41-50 ft. Yachts
9%
21%
47%
51-60 ft. Yachts
15%
33%
45%

When you look at the numbers like this, it is interesting to see how depreciation is relatively consistent for all of these yachts’ sizes.

The range of depreciation is more varied in the 1 to 3 year age, but then it is very much the same by year 7.

The range of early depreciation may likely result from different levels of maintenance and wear that could be a bigger factor for newer yachts.

After looking at the depreciation on all of these yachts, it is important to realize how it will affect the value of any yacht you might consider buying.

Depreciation in the first year ranges from 9 to 19 percent.  Over the first 3 years, the depreciation is from 21% – 33% or 7% – 11% per year.  Over 7 years, the depreciation is essentially 45% or 6.4% per year.

30-40 ft. Yachts:

1. Tiara Yachts 39 Open

A Tiara Yachts 30 Open in 2020 had an MSRP of $901,000, but the actual sales price was likely about $800,000.

These yachts have twin diesel engines, about 480 hp each, generator set, AC, and high end finishes:

  • The listing price of a 2020 yacht in 2021 is $669,900.
  • The 2018 model with very low engine hours (168) has a listing price of $649,999, and another one is priced at $579,000.
  • The 2014 model has listing prices of $479,000 and $489,000.
  • For comparison, a 2010 model was priced at $429,900, so the older ones are not depreciating as fast after 7 years.

From these values, the first-year value lost is about 16%, the 3-year value lost is about 23%, and the 7-year value lost is about 40%.

2. Sea Ray Sundancer 350 Coupe

This yacht has a price in 2021 of about $556,000, depending on equipment and options.

It comes with twin gas engines, 380 hp each, AC, generator, and entertainment package.

  • A 2020 model was listed at $425,000.
  • A listing for the 2018 model with low hours is $389,000; others are listed at $375,000, $365,000, $360,000, and $345,000.
  • The 2014 model had listing prices of  $349,000, $345,000, $268,500, $235,000 and $189,900.  Models over 10 years old were in the $120,000 to $150,000 range.

From these values, the first-year value lost is about 23%, the 3-year value lost is about 34%, and the 7-year value lost is about 50%.  Older boats lost about 75% of their current value.\

The clear message from these numbers is that depreciation is much faster in the first year and decreases in later years.

Also, note that the Sea Ray has gasoline engines, and it lost its value faster than the Tiara with diesel engines.

41-50 ft. Yachts:

1. Tiara Yachts 44 Coupe

The Tiara Yachts 44 Coupe comes with twin diesel engines, 480 hp each, and all the custom features you expect.

The price for a new 2021 version is about $1,100,000.

  • A 2020 yacht is listed for $990,000.
  • Current listings for the 2018 model are $799,000 and $789,000.
  • In 2014, the 44-foot model was called the Sovran, and it is now listed for $499,900.
  • Models over 10 years old are listed for $339,000 to $429,500.

From these values, the first-year value lost is about 10%, the 3-year value lost is about 28%, and the 7-year value lost is about 55%.  Older yachts lost 65% of their current value.

2. Viking Sport 48

This yacht is a sport ocean fishing vessel with twin diesel engines, 1200 hp each, and can cruise at 36 knots.

The 2021 price is about $2,100,000:

  • A 2020 model is listed for $1,950,000.
  • A 2018 model is not currently listed, but a 2017 model is priced at $1,775,000.
  • 2013 50′ Viking is priced at $1,250,000.
  • The ones more than 10 years old generally have prices over $785,000.

From these values, the first-year value lost is about 7%, the 3-year value lost is about 15%, and the 7-year value lost is about 40%.

The older yachts lost about 63% of the current value.

These yachts have the same depreciation pattern as the smaller size range, with it being much faster in the first year and then decreasing over time.  In this case, the depreciation was not as high in years 1 and 3, but it was about the same by year 7.

Interestingly, the Tiara Yachts 44 lost its value more quickly than the Viking sportfishing yacht.

Apparently, the Viking market reputation and value are higher.

51-60 ft. Yachts:

1. Hatteras M60

This yacht is a very comfortable custom-finished vessel with an enclosed flying bridge, powered with twin 1150 hp diesel engines.

Each vessel is customized by the new owner, with a typical price of about $3,350,000:

  • A one-year-old model has an asking price of $2,990,000.
  • There are no 2018 era yachts listed at this time, but they would probably be priced at $2,250,000.
  • A 2012 model has an asking price of $1,799,000.
  • A 2011 model has a price of $1,249,000.

From these values, the first-year value lost is about 11%, the 3-year value lost is about 33%, and the 7-year value lost is about 46%.

The older yachts lost about 63% of the current value.

2. Viking 58 Convertible

This yacht is a luxurious sport fishing vessel with a tower flying bridge powered by twin 16oo hp diesel engines.

The 2021 MSRP is $4,195,000:

  • There are no one-year-old models listed currently, but they are estimated to cost about $3,250,000.
  • A similar 2018 model has a listing price of $2,750,000.
  • The 2014 era models are listed at $2,495,000 and $2,250,000.
  • The pre-2011 models are listed at $2,150,000 and $1,950,000.
From these values, the first-year value lost is about 20%, the 3-year value lost is about 34%, and the 7-year value lost is about 43%.
These yachts have the same depreciation pattern as the smaller size ranges, but these are closer to the values of the 31 to 40-foot yachts instead of the 41 to 50-foot sizes.

In this size range, the Hatteras Motor Yacht lost its value at about the same rate as the Viking sportfishing yacht.  Both the Hatteras and the Viking have good market reputations.

Do Yachts Depreciate Faster than Other Types of Boats?

We found that sailboats seem to have the least depreciation over time.

Our Boat Depreciation Guide is a great resource that shows that cabin cruisers and fiberglass boats both have somewhat less depreciation than yachts in the first years after they are new.

After 7 years, the yachts seem to continue losing value, but more slowly compared to smaller boats as they get that old.

What Can You Do to Make your Yacht Keep its Value Better?

In all the cases that we researched, the owners maintained their vessels properly, which is very important to when attempting to maintain their value.

The example of the one yacht with gas engines lost value slightly more than the other yachts with diesel engines.

When buying either a new or used yacht, paying somewhat more for diesel engines will reduce the rate of depreciation.

Therefore, keeping your yacht as well maintained as possible and investing in the right engine will help you maintain its value for longer periods of time.

Which Types of Yachts Depreciate the Least?

According to our research, the yachts in the 41 to 50-foot range did not lose value so much through the first 3 years, but they lost value faster by year 7.

However, this could result from the particular prices at the time of our research or the notably better values of the Viking 48.

However, the overall depreciation for all sizes of the yacht was basically similar.

Although depreciation is inevitable, the yachts that hold their value the most are the ones that are maintained the best.

How Long will a Yacht Typically Last?

Once a yacht reaches a certain age, their value is completely dependent on their condition, which means how well they are maintained.

Before about 1965, yachts were often built in wood, and the cost to maintain a wooden vessel at some point can be more than its value.

Yachts’ built-in fiberglass will not require as much maintenance so that they could last for over 100 years.

As long as yachts are well maintained, they will typically maintain a baseline value, but the maintenance cost is higher than when they were new.

Yachts that are not well maintained continue to lose value until they can only be sold as junk or parts.

What’s the Best Age to Buy a Yacht Regarding the Depreciation?

As far as depreciation goes, buying an older yacht that is well maintained will be the lowest-cost approach.

Although it is not identified in the numbers here, it seems that when a yacht reaches an age of about 20 years, it has reached a baseline value, and it can be maintained at that value with regular maintenance for the next 20 years or so.

At some point, though, a yacht will require major rehabilitation or restoration, and this is expensive.

It is very important to remember that an older yacht will require more maintenance than a newer one, though.

Another thing to consider is to buy an older yacht that has recently been upgraded (like with new engines), to reduce the cost of future maintenance.

Final Thoughts:

Like many new expensive things in life, yachts will depreciate fairly quickly, but they will depreciate slower as they get older.

If you can afford a new yacht, it will feel fantastic to buy one brand new and have it customized for all your preferences and desires.  But remember, yachts are a financial expense, and you’ll likely spend a lot more time and money on them than you ever thought you would.

You’ll lose money to depreciation, insurance, maintenance, repairs, dock fees, storage, and maybe even for a captain or crew.

You’ll spend time taking safety courses, washing, making repairs, calling insurance companies, bringing your yacht to and from the docks, and you’ll probably be learning something new every time you go out.

This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t buy a yacht.  If cost is a concern, a used yacht can be much more affordable than a new one.

A well-maintained older yacht can provide many years of pleasure.  It is also possible to find an older, well-built yacht with new engines selling for what it would cost to buy only the engines!

Just remember the numbers from earlier so that you won’t be disappointed when you want to sell and find your yacht isn’t worth nearly as much as you paid for it when you bought it.

References:

Yachtworld – Yacht Pricing & Current Costs

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