There's a big bit of news for houseboat buyers and sellers in Seattle--we've finally got financing for houseboats/barges in rental marinas such as Seattle Marina and Commercial Marina. This has been the number one factor holding back houseboat sales in the past. Buyers had to pay cash for the full price of the houseboat, which was too great of a barrier for most.
Thanks to Linda Bagley of Special Agents Realty for the heads up. We don't have the final official stats yet, but here are the likely terms:
Seattle Metropolitan Credit Union will be lending on houseboat "vessels".Qualified borrowers will be able to finance up to 75% of the purchase price, and sales tax can be financed. This is important for buyers, as sales tax can add a 10% upfront cost to a vessel purchase.
Interest rates are likely to be 6.625%-7.125%, on a 30 year amortized loan with a 10 year balloon. This means you'll make payments on the home like a 30 year loan, but the balance will be due after 10 years. At that point, you'll need to make a full payoff, or find alternative financing. This is a great way for a first time buyer to get a foot in the door.
These houseboat vessels must be in moorage with a long-term lease, and an inspection/survey will be required to verify the condition of the vessel. Like all financing the buyers will need to go through an application process to verify their eligibility for financing, but this is a huge step forward for the houseboat vessel community.