How Much Does a Boat Cost to Own?

If you’re moving to sunny Florida and want to buy a boat, chances are you have many questions. For example, how much does a boat cost, and do you need a license to drive one in Florida? So if you’re searching for the answer to these and other questions, read on! We’ve got your answers below, plus essential info about being a Florida boat owner! (Good news, we even have boat storage in Bradenton!)

In Florida, owning a boat is almost as popular as owning a car. That’s not surprising, considering the Sunshine State has over 1300 miles of coastline! There are so many places for boating; you could go to a different one every day of the year! There’s the Atlantic Ocean on the east coast, while the west coast and Panhandle have the Gulf of Mexico.

How Much Does a Boat Cost?

While this might seem like an easy question to answer, it’s actually a bit difficult. The reason is that boats come in many different styles, sizes, and types. For example, an aluminum Jon boat with a 9-horsepower outboard engine costs about $5,000 on average. On the other end of the boating spectrum, for example, is a 45-foot cabin cruiser. They start at about $100,000 but go as high as $400,000.

In other words, the cost of a boat will depend on its size, power, and several other factors. (Size is probably the most important.) Below, we will look at different sizes and types of boats and their average prices. In addition, we’ll tell you the typical uses for each particular boat.

how much does a boat cost

Jon Boat

  • Perfect For: Fishing and some water sports.
  • Size: 10 to 20 feet
  • Price: $2500 to $6000
  • Example: Crestliner 1860 Retriever

Bowrider Boat

  • Perfect For: Cruising, fishing, and water sports like skiing.
  • Size: Under 20 feet
  • Price: $15 – $30,000
  • Example: Boston Whaler Montauk

Pontoon Boat

  • Perfect For: Fishing, parties, and relaxation.
  • Size:18 to 25 feet
  • Price: $20 – $65,000
  • Example: DLX Sun Tracker

Fishing Boat

  • Perfect For: Fishing and leisure.
  • Size: 18 to 30 feet
  • Price: $30 – $75,000
  • Example: Grady White Express 330

Cabin Cruiser

  • Perfect For: Cruising, relaxing, and fishing.
  • Size: 25 – 45 feet
  • Price: $250,000+
  • Example: Jeanneau NC1095 Fly


  • Perfect For: Going fast on the water, water sports like wakeboarding.
  • Size: 20 to 40 feet
  • Price: $30 – $100,000
  • Example: Yamaha 275 SE


  • Perfect For: Parties, cruising, relaxation, and overnight trips.
  • Size: 30 to 100 feet
  • Price: $250,000+
  • Example: Pearl 62


  • Perfect For: Sailing, leisure, and relaxation.
  • Size: 30 to 60 feet
  • Price: $80,000 – $300,000
  • Example: Bermuda 50
how much does a boat cost

What Does Boat Upkeep and Marina Docking Cost?

Like the basic boat cost, upkeeping (maintaining) a boat varies from one boat to another. Typically, the bigger the boat, the more the upkeep will cost. For example, the cost to maintain a 10-foot Jon boat will be a few hundred dollars a year. The cost to maintain a 50-foot yacht? That could potentially cost between $4,000 and $10,000 per year.

According to boating sources, the average upkeep cost per year for an average-sized boat is $2,000.00. One major cost factor, especially with a bigger boat, is the cost to dock it in a marina. There are marinas all over Florida, and the docking fees vary with the size of the boat you dock.

Also, some marinas are high-end with amenities. For example, some marinas have restaurants, nightclubs, bait & tackle shops, and cleaning. Of course, those marinas will cost more than a basic marina with fewer amenities. The average price to dock your boat can range between $1,000 and $10,000 per year in Florida. (Higher if you have a very large boat.)

Boats floating in a marina on a sunny day

Do You Need Boat Insurance and How Much Does it Cost?

Another cost to keep in mind is insurance for your boat. The thing about Florida is that you don’t legally need boat insurance. However, a conscientious boat owner will always have boat insurance just in case. (Accidents can and do happen.) The average cost to insure a boat is between $500 and $1,000 per year. Although that price will go much higher if you have a high-end boat, like a “cigarette” speedboat.

How Much Does Boat Storage Cost?

Some boats can be trailered and launched every time you go out on the water. While you’ll save marina docking fees, you’ll need to store your boat somewhere, which will cost extra. There are several different types of boat storage. As you might imagine, there are several different prices also. They include:

  • Home storage: Nothing, but not always allowed due to HOA rules
  • Storage in a marina: $15 to $50 per foot per month
  • Indoor boat storage: $15 to $40 per foot per month
  • Outdoor boat storage: $5 to $30 per foot per month
  • Dry stacked storage: $10 to $45 per foot per month
  • Boat storage at a self-storage center: $100 to $200 per month

Does Florida Require a Boat License?

Technically, you don’t need a boat license to operate a boat in Florida waters. (Just FYI, they do require fishing licenses.) However, to operate a boat with a 10 hp motor or greater, you must pass a Florida-approved boating safety course. However, this is only for folks born on or after January 1, 1988. Once you pass the course, you’ll receive a Boating Safety Education ID Card.

how much does a boat cost

How Much Does it Cost to Own a Boat?

Brought to you by Hide-Away Storage

Above all, we hope the information above has been genuinely helpful in determining what size and type of boat to purchase. There’s a lot to think about, no doubt, and many expenses that go into buying and owning a boat. The joy, family time, and memories, though, make up for the cost in spades!

At Hide-Away Storage, we have self-storage locations all over the Sunshine State. Almost all of them are capable of storing boats, including inside, outside, and covered. Also all of our self-storage centers are very safe and secure, with 24/7 video cameras and on-site managers. You can rest assured that your boat will be very safe when stored with Hide-Away.

Lastly, if you have questions about boat storage in Florida, you can chat with us online anytime. Also, visiting the Hideaway Self Storage location nearest you is a great choice. The on-site manager can answer all your questions and help you decide which boat storage is best for your needs. So from everyone at Hide-Away Storage, we wish you the best of times enjoying your boat in Florida’s warm, delightful waters!