Dallas, Texas (PressExposure) July 13, 2013 -- Many people think of horses when they think of Texas. But with so many lakes in the region, residents in the Dallas-Fort Worth area are more likely to own boats. Just look to the 2013 DFW Boat Expo coming to Dallas Market Hall July 18-21, 2013. The boat show is the largest event of its kind ever staged at Market Hall.
"The DFW Boat Expo is the best place to buy a boat because all makes and models of boats will be under one roof," says Bron Beal, United Boat Dealers of North Texas. "Guests will have the ability to compare, explore, discover and become educated on the many options, pricing and purpose of the various boats."
He adds, "The DFW 'Summer' Boat Expo has an added feature - affordability. As with cars, boats are manufactured on an annual basis. The 2014 boats will be ordered and delivered soon, so dealerships will be selling their 2013 boats at reduced prices. It's the perfect time to buy a new boat."
According to the annual U.S. Recreational Boating Statistical Abstract compiled by the National Marine Manufacturers Association, the economic impact of recreational boating in the United States in 2012 was $121 billion. The DFW area's 179,033 recreational boats contributed $1.9 billion of that and supported 14,853 jobs.
That's a lot of boats. For those interested in buying, more than 450 boats and watercraft will be on display and available for purchase - ranging from 16-foot, entry level run-a-bouts ($12,000) to 40- and 50-foot luxury yachts ($1.5 Million). Power boats on site will include pontoons, ski boats, wake board boats, fishing boats, family run-a-bouts, cruisers, off shore racing boats, Jet Skis, personal watercraft and more. The expo will not have sailboats.
Beal explains that boat financing works differently than automobiles, "making them much more affordable. Financing options can go as long as 10 to 15 years in some cases, resulting in a monthly payment about half of what a comparable automobile would be."
Like automobiles, though, dealers have in-house financing through one of several major financing companies or the manufacturer. "Dealers are a 'one stop' service when it comes to financing, or buyers may choose private financing," Beal states, adding, "If you are thinking of making a purchase on site, which many people do, you will need to make an earnest deposit. Deposits are negotiated by the buyer and dealer."
"If you do go to the show to purchase a boat, a little pre-planning can go a long way. Educate yourself on several key items.
"First, what do I want the boat for? Family time? Puttering around? Going fast? Skiing and boarding? Fishing? Define the need, and it will save you time looking for the type of boat that best fits that need. Although many dealers carry several classifications of boats, some specialize in one type of boat versus all of the above.
"Second, do your financial homework. Check with your bank or other lender. Getting pre-approved - knowing the rates, payments, terms, etc. - will give you something to compare with when discussing finance options with a dealer. You might be surprised that most dealers will beat most financing terms.
"Third and maybe the most important: If you are serious about buying a boat at the DFW Boat Expo, make sure you've thought about insurance, transportation and storage. Insurance is relatively inexpensive and is highly competitive right now, which is great for buyers and owners.
"Transportation is often forgotten, but in reality is the greatest example of common sense in the boat buying process. In short, don't buy a 42-foot cabin cruiser thinking you can just add a trailer hitch to your Buick Park Avenue. Research your current vehicle's towing capabilities, and make sure you stay within those guidelines. This is definitely a consideration in determining the type and size of boat you purchase.
"Storage is another issue. Many boat owners use marinas or boat storage facilities at the lake, an additional expense. Some do it the old-fashioned way and clear out the garage or driveway. If choosing the latter, check your city's codes. Most cities in the DFW area have specific codes regarding the storage of boats and/or RV's."
"A boat is a major purchase. We want buyers to have a positive experience - to be happy with the boat they selected and to enjoy it," Beal says. "The DFW Boat Expo is all about making that happen."
The DFW Boat Expo, presented by the United Boat Dealers of North Texas, will be at Dallas Market Hall, 2200 Stemmons Freeway, Dallas, TX 75207, Thursday through Sunday, July 18-21. Twenty North Texas boat dealers and nearly 100 different vendors will take part.
Hours for the expo are:
Thursday, July 18, 3 - 9 PM
Friday, July 19, 3 - 9 PM
Saturday, July 20, 10 AM - 9 PM
Sunday, July 21, 10 AM - 6 PM
Tickets are $12 for adults, $6 for children, and are only available at the door. Parking is free.