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Today’s Boat Buyer: Part II

Michael Boudreau bought a Pursuit C 310 with twin 250-hp Yamaha 4-strokes from Striper Marine in Barrington , R.I. , in January. He bought the center console after looking at one at the Hartford (Conn.) Boat Show.

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“We had seen the Pursuits online, but my wife, Jeannie, and I wanted to see one for ourselves,” says Boudreau, 58, of Glocester, R.I.

Boudreau says they’ve gotten into tuna fishing and wanted something they could comfortably fish on at night. He says he has a stable job at the State Department of Corrections and figured since his investments were going down anyway, he might as well get the boat of his dreams.

We have very good credit, and I was planning to get a boat like this before the downturn,” he says. “We had a 26.6 Sailfish with Yamaha 4-strokes, but it was just getting a little too small for us. We were ready for a bigger boat.”

“I tell my wife that I would sell blood to pay for the gas on my boat.” - Michael Boudreau

Boudreau says they began researching online in the fall, and the Pursuit caught their eye. They went to the Hartford show to take a look at the boat. “We bought it from the dealership in Rhode Island because it was more convenient for us,” says Boudreau. “Everyone was just so incredibly helpful and open to negotiations. The doors weren’t shut like in the past.”

Al Elson, president of Striper Marina, says the retail price of Boudreaus’ Pursuit is about $206,525, but the buyer declined to say exactly what he paid for the new boat.

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Boudreau says he easily got a 20-year loan with a 4.8 percent interest rate. The only difference was that the bank was looking for a higher credit score than before — 680 versus 620. “Fortunately, we were fine,” he says.

Boudreau says boat shows are essential to the marine industry in that they give customers a good sense of what is available. “Without boat shows, the whole system would go down the tubes,” he says. “They open up all avenues to prospective buyers.”

Regardless of the economy, Boudreau believes that people who love boating and fishing will continue to do so.

“I tell my wife that I would sell blood to pay for the gas on my boat,” he says. “I think the media is scaring people to death. Life’s going to go on, and we’re going to have good and bad times. … This is just a tough time right now.”

— Elizabeth Ellis

Click here for Part I of this series, which runs through Wednesday.

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