TODAY’S BOAT BUYER: David and Nancy Harleman, Lowe FM165

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033109BuyerDavid and Nancy Harleman of Harrisonville, Mo., like nothing better than getting on the water, putting a couple lines out, and relaxing in nature. But as they approach retirement, they wanted a boat that would cost less to run than their 19-footer with a 200-hp outboard.

Last month, they purchased a new Lowe FM165 with a 50-hp Mercury from Angler’s Port Marine in Warsaw, Mo.

“First of all, we were looking for a deep-vee hull,” says David Harleman, 57. “And a bass boat is shallow, which makes it easier to get into.”

Harleman is a maintenance technician for Harley Davidson and has been a boater for much of his life. He and Nancy, 52, love to fish on Lake Truman, which is a little more than an hour from home. He decided to replace his 19-foot bass boat because he wanted something more fuel-efficient and thought it was a good time to take advantage of the deals being offered.

“Our old boat had a 200-hp Mariner outboard,” says Harleman. “It just ate up so much fuel. It would cost $100 just to spend a day out on the lake, between trailering it and then going out on the water.”

The Harlemans attended the Kansas City Sportshow in early January and met some representatives from Angler’s Port Marine, which is owned by Dennis and Linda Morgan. They were looking for something along the lines of the 16.5-foot bass boat with a 50-hp Johnson they had owned a few years ago but lost in an accident.

“They were all very friendly and helpful, very down to earth,” says Harleman. “You couldn’t ask for better people.”

They began exchanging e-mails about the type of boat they were looking for and available financing options. The Harlemans were putting no money down, and the dealership gave them a “show special” of around $13,000, even though they bought it a month after the show.

Harleman says it was easy to get financing with their good credit, and he was able to sell his old boat to a relative before purchasing the new one.

“We love being outdoors and on the water; fishing is very therapeutic,” says Harleman. “There’s nothing better than sitting out in the boat, hearing the sounds of nature, eating a sandwich, and just talking casually. It’s a great way to reconnect.”

“I think people are getting tired of all the negative talk and need something to raise their spirits and boost their confidence in the way things are going,” says Harleman, referring to the state of the economy. “I think the spring weather can be a boost to everybody’s morale. I am a half-full type of person.”

– Elizabeth Ellis

Staff writer


6 comments on “TODAY’S BOAT BUYER: David and Nancy Harleman, Lowe FM165

  1. Jack Pillsbury

    Is this the new typical deal?  I am a Lowe dealer and acording to my price sheet the dealer cost on this rig was around $11800, plus shipping, rigging the engine, battery, and prop, none of which are included in the invoce price.  take off a couple of points if it is a big volumn dealer and a couple hundred for the Lowe promo and if sold for the $13000 indicated, I still come up on the shy side of a 10 point deal.  Secondly where is this bank that is still doing nothing down loans?  Thanks Jack @ Slip’s Capeway Marine.

  2. DFM

    I absolutely agree with Jack @ Slips Capeway Marine. I have been a Lowe dealer for 32 years this year. Is this really the way to prosper as a boat dealer. Why give away the farm just to say you sold something? How can the dealer restock that boat, pay freight, pay the salesman’s comission, restock the equipment used to rig the boat, pay the mechanic who rigged and prepped it and have anything left to pay bills? Anyone can give boats away it takes some talent to make a profit.  What bank is still doing zero down loans? This does not sound like Todays Boat Buyer to me.

  3. RSM FL

    1)If you read the article this is about happy customers and people finding ways to have fun in what is supposed to be a poor time. Not about how much profit is in a deal. Jack is not even in the same part of the country. So why feed in the negativity ???? 
    2) In jan at the boat show there were 0 dn deals. Who is to say this dealer does not make profit in the back end ?
    3) The article does not say if this is an 08 or 09 possible dealer repo he that was bought for deeper discounts ?
    Lets be happy for dealers that are finding a way to survive and keep people in our sport.

  4. DBF

    Amen to both Jack and DFM.   The aforementioned expenses, deep cycle battery, gas and oil, tim sender, tie downs.  Looks like he got an optional seat assembly.  All for $13,000?  I’d pass on that deal!

  5. dem

    I have to agree with RSM FL, this story was about the abuility to still make the sale.  Now what is acceptible profit margin is up to the dealer. 
    I have to say from the previous comments there are two dealers that are more about the initial sales profit than a long time, service potential, happy to refer a friend and tell the world about the great experience they had within the sales process; type of customer. 
    excellent points RSM FL… here in Mo its a little more customer focused and not on just the “sell”. 

  6. Nancy H

    Wow, I didn’t know buying a boat could cause such an uproar! We wanted a boat that wouldn’t cost an arm & a leg- just a way to be out on the water with a fishing pole in our hands, enjoying each other’s company in a time when all you hear is how we are all hurting so much.  And I can tell you this- I don’t have a clue how much our dealer made on our sale, but i’m sure they didn’t give away the farm or they couldn’t stay in business. But what I can tell you is this: we will go back for any future needs in a heartbeat. Not only that, we recommend them to anybody that we can. They have made a customer for life, and isn’t word of mouth the best advertisement? They don’t just sell boats, they sell fun!  GO ANGLER’S PORT MARINE!!

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