1500 Marina Bay Dr. Suite 1611
Watergate Yachting Center, Pier 23
Kemah, Texas 77565 USA
Phone (281) 334.1993
Fax (281) 334.4795

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.............. Sure we have international issues with terrorists, a loose border to protect and we can't seem to get either political party to agree on anything, but that's not new. The good news is when talking to people everyday I don't hear people worried about their jobs like they were 5-6 years ago. Contrary to what CNN, ABC, NBC and all the other medias, the USA is really doing pretty fine. Besides if the economy were doing so poorly, I wouldn't be writing this but selling light bulbs at Wal-Mart.

Second: The FED is raising rates (because the economy is doing well). It takes a few more bucks a month to buy a boat now than it did a year ago. If you bought a boat last fall, you probably got a rate or around 5.75%. Right now the rate is hovering at 7%. Most financial sources say it could be at 8% by the end of this year. Find something now and you'll be locked in at a much lower rate and don't forget all the interest is tax deductible as a second home anyway.

Third: Sales Tax. The Government WANTS YOU TO BUY THINGS and as an incentive the sales tax that you pay on larger ticket items can be taken as a deduction on your income tax if you buy something before the end of 2006. So if you pay 150K for a boat, the sales tax is 6.25% or $9375. You can get that and the interest on that note, say around another 10K as a deduction on your taxes next year. Now what else can you buy that you can move literally around the world, that you can get a solid tax deduction all the while enjoying a cold beverage! You're not going to do that with an RV, drink a beer that is? Besides to me driving an RV from point A to point B is called commuting! Plus when you get to that RV park what are you going to do? You're going to get to park 5' away from some other guy who did the same thing to get there to get away from everyone else. I'll take a boat at anchor off San Leon or Offats Bayou any day of the week over driving an RV to an over crowded RV "park". Bottom line the government is going to give you a hefty sales tax deduction for buying a boat this year.

Fourth: You're not getting any younger. Ask a couple whose last kid just got out of college and they finally bought a boat if they should have done it sooner? They will tell you not only sooner, but why didn't they do it when the kids were smaller so that they could have enjoyed more quality family time. Again and again we get letters, notes, emails, from clients from the far reaches of the Caribbean to Lake Texoma who all say, "We love our boat, why didn't we do this sooner?" I'll ask you a difficult question, "If you only knew you had 10 years left, 10 solid years from today and your time was up, what would you do with that time?" Sure we all have to work, but we need to work to live and not live to work. This is no dress rehearsal; there is no second act that follows this life. This is your life and you can always work till you're passing. One thing is for sure there will always be plenty of time to be dead! As Mark Twain said, "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the things you did do."

Fifth: You don't have the time? I hear this all the time. "I don't have the time for a boat". You think you're the busiest person in the world? I'd say far from it. Everyone works more than they should and everyone needs a leisure activity otherwise why are you working so hard, to leave your vast fortune to the kids? Besides kids regardless of their age want nothing more than your time. Take your children, whether they are 5 or 35, boating, and you won't believe the conversations you'll have and for younger children, the responsibility it teaches them. One of my favorite sayings is, "The Greatest Dividends are paid by the Assets that are not in your Portfolio."

Sixth: Fuel prices. Who cares! Unless you live in Chile, we have the cheapest gas in the world. France is $5 per gallon. The UK is about $6 per gallon. Italy is $7 per gallon and Norway is nearly $8 and Norway has some of the richest reserves in the world. Compared to everyone else, our gas is still cheap. Besides all the boats we sell are economical diesels, not gas and the average sailboat in Clear Lake uses about $100 per year for fuel and if you're power boating, the average diesel trawler around here uses maybe 10 times that, but that is hardly a drop in the bucket compared to what it would cost you to fill the tank in other parts of the world.

Seven: The Big H! Hurricane Season is upon us. Why in the world would you buy a boat during hurricane season? Because it's a good time of the year to go boating!! Look, yes we have had an enormously active season these past two years and yes they are predicting an active one again, but that's exactly what it is, a prediction. Now I just read another article that the prediction is that it won't be as bad as the last two years. So who really knows?
We all know the weather is unpredictable. Hurricanes and other natural calamities are what you have insurance for otherwise you wouldn't need it. I'll take a hurricane over a tornado, earthquake or tsunami any day of the week. At least with a hurricane you know they are coming. With any of the others you don't even get a warning. With a hurricane you have at least 3-4 days notice that it MIGHT come your way and the key word is might. To me not owning a boat and enjoying life because a hurricane might come would be like not driving on the highway because I might have a wreck. It's not predictable and are you really going to live your life around what might happen? Life is too short to worry about everything besides didn't I already tell you you aren't getting any younger.

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