When we first looked at narrowboats for sale during our holiday in 2007, we were looking at what we could get for $100,000 (Australian dollars that is). At the time it was equivalent to about £40,000. What a difference the exchange rate fluctuations can make. Now, in 2010, we were looking at £60,000 boats!
We have our fingers crossed that the rate won't drop back before we get to buy a boat of our own. A lot can happen over a period of couple of years. Look at the difference between 2007 and 2010.
This is a problem that doesn't affect most narrowboaters. But, for those of us planning from the other side of the world it is a very important factor. So much so that fellow Aussies Ray and Diane (coming to visit us on Sunday!), new owners of Gypsy Rover, brought forward their plans to take advantage of the favourable exchange rates. We only wish we were in a position to do the same. It works both ways though. For Derek and Dot, previous owners of Gypsy Rover, the huge difference in the exchange rate has worked against them.
So every night we watch the news and check out how the Australian dollar is faring against the British Pound. Lately it as been consistently over the .60 mark - that is 60 pence for one Aussie dollar. We keep wishing we had money spare to buy a boat right now. I guess we'll just have to keep buying Tattslotto tickets.
Here is our pick of the week from ABNB brokerage (wonder if Aussies named this boat.... we have Rainbow Lorikeets in our garden sometimes). It's seems a bit expensive for its age though.
Length: 59ft 8in
Builder: Burton Narrowboats
Fitter-out: Severn Valley Boat Centre
Year registered: 2004
Safety Certificate: 2012
Engine: Shire 45hp diesel
Bowthruster: Tube only Plating: 10/6/5/4
Last blacked: 2009
Fit-out materials: Cabin sides, hull sides & headling in oak faced ply with oak trim
Insulation: Spray foam
Headroom: 6ft 5in
Berth sizes: 6ft 4in x 4ft 0in permanent double, 6ft 4in x 4ft 0in double on L-shape dinette
Mains Power: Landline,1800W Sterling inverter, 3.5kW Travelpower 230V alternator
Cabin heating: Eberspacher diesel c/heating > rads, diesel stove with back boiler > rads Water Heating: C/heating + stove + engine + 230V immersion > calorifier
Water tank: 150gall stainless steel
Cooker: Spinflo Midi Prima oven & grill - gas, 800W microwave
Fridge: LEC 4cu ft 12V
Washer/dryer: Zanussi Aquacycle compact automatic washer
WC: Thetford swivel seat cassette wc
Shower: over bath with curtain
Other: Cratch & cover. One private owner from new who sells to move abroad.