Dry Boat Storage: Finding a Solution that Works for You

Dry Boat Storage: Finding a Solution that Works for You

While wet slips may be popular in coastal areas, dry boat storage provides more storage options. You can store your boat on a rack, in a storage unit or personal storage, or storing with Neighbor. Dry boat storage can protect your boat year round at an affordable cost.

When you bought a boat, you probably imagined a few things. Endless summer days on the lake. Teaching the kids how to water-ski and wake-board. Barbecuing on the shore between tube runs. In the midst of that daydreaming,  you may not have anticipated the logistics of owning a boat.

Cleaning and upkeep is only one part of the equation. Another is storage. Knowing where you’ll park your boat shouldn’t have to be a hassle or a dissuade you from buying a boat in the first place. Luckily, there are a lot of options, especially with dry boat storage. So which is best?

Dry Vs. Wet Slip Storage

Parking a boat in the water is wet slip storage. A slip means the space between walkways at the marina. Wet slips are highly trafficked and well lit. They may be secured by video surveillance or other security. Best of all, wet slip storage is convenient. Anytime you want to use your boat, all you have to do is show up, no towing required.

One downside to wet slip storage is the price. You’ll have to pay a docking fee which can easily reach over $1000 a year. If you live in warm climates and are out on the boat a lot, the fee may be worth it.

Dry boat storage is any boat storage that is out of water. While wet slip storage has a convenience factor, dry boat storage has a cosmetic upside. Keeping your boat out of the water will help keep the exterior clean. It also reduces the chance of mildew and other water induced inconveniences.

Different Dry Boat Storage Methods

At some marinas, dry  boat storage means lifting your boat out of the water onto a rack. The boat stays close to the water or in a warehouse. Sometimes, these warehouses are even heated. However, this kind of storage is mostly found at the coasts especially in warmer areas like California, Texas, or Florida. You may although also find dry rack storage in places like Chicago or popular boating areas like Lake Tahoe.

If you’re like most boat owners, a trailer is a close companion to your boat. You take the away from the lake or ocean and find storage somewhere inland. This is especially true for boat owners in the Midwest and Mountain West. Long winters make west slip storage impractical and unnecessary. Plus, you’ll never take out the boat in the middle of January.

Even storage on a trailer can have some different options. Many boats are shrink wrapped to keep out dirt, water, and animals. There’s also the question whether to store the boat outside or indoors in a garage or storage facility. Of course, these different storage methods have different costs.

Dry Boat Storage Costs

  • Store on a rack. Most expensive
  • Store at the marina. Moderately expensive
  • Store in a storage unit. Moderately affordable
  • Store in your garage. Free, but with downsides
  • Store with Neighbor. Most affordable

As you might imagine, storing on a rack has some hefty costs. Many of these are absorbed in the fees of a yacht club or a marina group, but you’ll still ending up paying by the size of the boat. Fees can run up past $20/foot but most stay around $10/foot per month. That can add up quick depending on your boat. If you have a high performance boat, these fees could rocket into the thousands every month.

Some marinas or lakes offer their own boat storage without racking. The prices are more affordable, but you’re also paying for the services. Besides storing your boat, the marina can have it ready for you when you show up. Some even guarantee a launch. This means you don’t have to worry about getting a slot on a holiday or popular weekend.

Another option is storing the boat at a storage unit. If your boat is very small, it could fit into a 10×15 unit. Otherwise, you’ll need to rent a bigger area such as a 10×20, 10×30, or even bigger. Prices on these storage units run close to $100 a month while the bigger units get up to $200 or even higher. Expect to pay more if you want a climate controlled unit.

If you have the property, storing your boat at your own home can be the most affordable option. However, a boat will displace other vehicles or recreational equipment in your garage or on a pad. A boat, while nice on the water, isn’t the most attractive thing in a driveway and will detract from the look of your home. Some neighborhoods, especially those with a HOA or community governance may not even allow you to store a boat where it is visible.

Dry Boat Storage with Neighbor

A solution to all the problems of different dry storage options is to store your boat with Neighbor. Storing with Neighbor means your boat stays at someone else’s home in the community. If you don’t have the space at your own home or don’t want to frustrate your wife parking it next to her roses, storing with Neighbor is a better option.

Neighbor is also more affordable than a storage unit. Whereas you could spend past $200 a month at a storage facility, you’ll be looking at spending anywhere from $50-$80 a month with Neighbor. Another benefit to storing your boat with Neighbor is the convenience to find a space that works for you. Maybe you don’t need covered storage, or maybe you want a place that will let you come and go with easy access. You have your choice between different listings.

You can also find storage somewhere on your route home to the lake so you don’t have to make any detours. Storing through Neighbor doesn’t require a six month or year long contract. You could store your boat for a few weeks in the summer, all winter, or any amount of time you choose.

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