Evaluation of second-hand yachts

There is no such thing as the perfect used boat. Something is always missing or not as we would like it to be. Of course, there is always something else that is missing. This makes it all the more difficult to compare used yachts, i.e. to determine a price adjusted for equipment.

Of course, when we were looking for our new „used“ catamaran, we thought about everything we would like to have on board beforehand. Both in terms of technology and equipment. We then assigned a „price“ to each point, which we tried to research as accurately as possible. We started with a 45-foot catamaran.

Sails & Rigging

Mainsail and jib are usually already present. But age, use and care naturally have an impact. The same applies to the standing and running rigging. For a catamaran with sails that are 10 years old, we have assumed that both the sails and the standing and running rigging will have to be at least partially overhauled or newly purchased. For 5-year-old sails, we have applied half of the prices. For catamarans, there are also light wind sails such as Code Zero and Parasailor, whereby a Code Zero was classified as nice-to-have for us, but would not be purchased if not available. A parasailor, on the other hand, is a must-have for us.

Mainsail€ 8.000
Jib€ 8.000
Parasailor€ 15.000
Running rigging€ 5.000
Standing rigging€ 5.000


Energy on board is Axel’s passion. Hello World was already well equipped in terms of energy, but on a catamaran it should be possible to be as energy self-sufficient as possible.

Solarpanels (8 pcs. á 400 W)€ 1.000
Regulator (8 pcs.)€ 2.000
Batteries LiFePo (4 pcs.á 300 W)€ 12.000
Inverter/Charger (2 pcs. á 3 kw)€ 4.000
Victron Cerbo etc.€ 2.000
Mounting€ 5.000

Navigation & Safety

Similar to the sails, there is usually already something on the instruments. Here, too, it is assumed according to the same pattern that they have to be replaced after a certain age.

Plotter€ 3.000
Radar€ 2.500
Instruments€ 1.500
AIS€ 1.200
EPIRB€ 1.000
Life Raft€ 3.000


Here, engine hours and maintenance condition are the decisive factors as to whether something needs to be replaced or not. A broken engine will of course cost a lot of money, but it is also indispensable. While bulging sails can perhaps be ignored for a while, this is not possible with a non-functioning engine. Unfortunately, a catamaran also has two engines. However, we optimistically assumed that both would not have to be replaced at the same time.

Motor 4JH45€ 11.000
SD 60€ 6.000
Installation€ 5.000
Engine Service€ 5.000

Comfort & equipment

In addition to the must-haves such as water maker, RIB dinghy with powerful outboard engine, air conditioning and cockpit enclosure, there are numerous „little things“ that would be nice to have, but which you could do without if necessary (but we don’t really want to).

Watermaker (EcoTec)€ 8.000
Air Conditioning (Mabru 12 V)€ 7.000
RIB Dinghy (Highfield with console)€ 10.000
Outborder (20 PS)€ 3.000
Cockpit enclosure & Upholstery€ 10.000
Washer/Dryer€ 4.500
Folding props (2 pcs.)€ 8.800
Mattresses€ 3.700
Curtains/roller blinds€ 5.000
Scuba tank holder€ 4.000
Stainless steel work (handles, shelves, brackets)€ 2.000
Hull wrapping/foiling€ 10.000
Rub rail€ 3.500
Underwater lighting€ 2.000
Woodwork (conversion of cupboards, shelves etc.)€ 4.000
Fresh water flush toilets€ 1.800

As I said, the prices are only estimates and serve as a guideline when assessing whether a used yacht is comparatively cheap or expensive. A catamaran that feels cheap can quickly become € 150k more expensive when the missing or replacement equipment is added.

In addition to the equipment, the EU VAT status was another point for us to consider. As an EU citizen, you are immediately liable for import VAT as soon as you cross the EU’s external border. Unfortunately, many used boats have either not paid tax, e.g. if they were purchased through foreign charter companies, or have lost their tax status because they have not been in an EU country for more than 3 years. There are certainly loopholes in this respect, but if these are not completely safe and reliable – and you are caught – you are guilty of tax evasion if you do not pay tax on the used boat when you import it into the EU. For us an absolute no-go, so in case of doubt another € 100k on top if a used boat is compared without a valid VAT-paid status.

The ex-charter catamaran Leopard 45 with a purchase price of € 400k in Greece sounds cheap at first. However, with additional equipment and import sales tax (in this case 23% in Greece), it quickly comes to around € 620k. In contrast, the Lagoon 450 S looks more expensive with a purchase price of € 565k. Additional equipment is also added here, so you end up with € 648k. Still expensive, but as a privately used owner’s yacht with tax already paid, it is perhaps the better option, because at least you save a lot of additional work for the conversions and the stress of dealing with customs.