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ACFA-Cashflow Guide: The Best Boat Loans in 2022

Choosing the best boat loan relies on your financial situation and the boat you’re purchasing. Most float items can be financed, whether a bit ski boat or a large yacht.

You may begin looking for a boat loan after you’ve decided on the model year and kind of boat you desire. Only specific types of ships and newer models are eligible for financing from several lenders.

Boat loans aren’t as widely available as vehicle loans. However, a few options remain.

Loans for boats from LightStream

If you’re in the market for a low-cost boat and rapid finance, LightStream is a great alternative.

Trusted online lender LightStream was founded in 2012 and is supported by the Truist Group (Member FDIC). LightStream is one of our top selections for the best RV loans and personal loans because of its online experience, same-day financing, and a wide variety of loan options.

LightStream provides low-interest boat financing with no fees. One may borrow up to $100,000, which covers various financial situations. LightStream’s loans are a good choice since they have the lowest interest rates in the industry.

LightStream does not specify which boats it will fund on its website. There are no collateral requirements for LightStream loans. That allows for a broader range of models and older boats to be financed.

Bank of the West Loans for Boats

If you’re looking for a boat loan of $50,000 or more, Bank of the West and its lending business, Essex Credit, are viable options.

There is a beginning interest rate of 8.89 percent on a $10,000 boat loan with Bank of the West; a $15,000 boat loan is 8.39 percent, and a $50,000 loan is 4.29 percent; LightStream may be a better option for someone searching for a smaller loan, even though their rates for loans exceeding $50,000 are competitive.

A loan processing fee may be charged by this lender, which might raise your overall borrowing costs. For loans between $10,000 and $200,000, a 10% down payment is also needed, and the percentages grow as the loan amount increases.

All loan rates for houseboats and high-performance boats, as well as interest rates for ships between 2001 and 2010, are increased by 0.5 percent by Bank of the West.

Boat loans from SunTrust Financial Services

To finance a major boat purchase, SunTrust provides fee-free loans. Anyone seeking a lesser loan should check at LightStream before turning to SunTrust.

SunTrust’s minimum loan amount is $100,000, and it only lends to boats that are at least 30 feet in length. A down payment of 15% is required for ordinary yachts up to $500,000, which is something to keep in mind.

SunTrust may have the edge over other lenders regarding houseboat loans. SunTrust does not impose additional fees for houseboat loans, although Bank of the West does. Thus this lender may be more affordable.

We also examined a few other options while making our decision.

US Bank has some of the most expensive boat loan rates, beginning at 5.24 percent. According to the bank, private party boat purchases, loans under $25,000, and secondhand boats may be subject to higher interest rates. Lower prices may be found elsewhere in the end.

Those not affiliated with the military cannot apply for these loans via USAA. The interest rates with USAA start at 5.25 percent, which is roughly a percentage point more than a LightStream loan, but even those who are qualified might obtain a lower deal from one of our top recommendations.

Like USAA, Navy Federal Credit Union membership is restricted to a select group of individuals. New boat loans start at a 5.95 percent interest rate, while used boats start at a 7.45 percent.

No one at Boat US could surpass the interest rates given by the competition. There may be specific borrowers who don’t require a $25,000 minimum loan amount.

What are the most common questions asked?

Which boat loans did we pick?

The mission of Personal Finance Insider is to provide the most up-to-date financial information to those who want it. You don’t have to go through the nitty-gritty details of several boat loans and lenders. We took into account the most significant variables for boaters, such as:

  • Various banks’ beginning points for interest rates were compared, as were their ranges, where available.
  • We searched for lenders that provided boat loans with the most negligible costs possible and found a couple of them.
  • Our lenders provide a broad range of loan amounts so that everyone may acquire a loan to cover their boat purchase costs.
  • Lenders we looked at have loans accessible in almost, if not entirely, all 50 states.

Who is the most reliable of the lenders?

We’ve taken a look at each business’s BBB rating.

Businesses are evaluated by the Better Business Bureau (BBB), an independent, non-profit organization dedicated to promoting and protecting the interests of consumers. The following is a breakdown of the results for each business:

The BBB has given all three of our recommendations an A+ rating. A good BBB rating does not ensure a good connection with your lender, and you should continue to conduct your homework and speak with others who have used the firm to acquire as much information as possible.

In what way do boat loans operate?

You’ll recognize how a boat loan works if you’ve ever taken out a loan for a car or a house. The steps are as follows:

  • Don’t start searching for finance until after you have found the yacht. You’ll need to know precisely what you want to purchase before you apply for a loan since many lenders ask for details about the boat in the application.
  • A maritime survey may be required of you. During the buying process, you may be required to have a maritime study conducted to guarantee that the boat is in good working condition. Typically, a naval survey costs $20 to $25 per foot, according to the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA). People who are purchasing a secondhand boat are more likely to need this.
  • Expect to pay a down payment. Down payments are required for many loans, whether a house or automobile. Percentage requirements range from 10% to 20%, depending on the lender and your borrowing money.

Where can I get a loan for a boat?

Online or in person, you may seek a boat loan at either location.

An online boat loan may be the most excellent option for someone wishing to acquire a loan from a stranger, commonly known as a private party purchase. In many cases, online loans enable borrowers to buy boats from both private individuals and dealerships, depending on their needs. Because of its greater adaptability, it may allow for the inclusion of more reasonably priced secondhand boats.

Is it possible to receive a loan for a secondhand boat?

Yes. Loans for new and secondhand boats are available from all of our top-selected lenders.

A boat loan’s term is determined by the amount borrowed.

In most cases, the duration of a boat loan is determined by two factors: the loan amount and the bank that you choose. An 18-to-24-month course is typical for a smaller loan; however, a 24- to 72-month term is not uncommon for larger boat loans.