Marina Cap Rates

The Magic Question

If there’s one question I get that it seems only I know, it’s “what’s the marina cap rate for my marina?”  I explained a lot of what you need to know in a Marina & Boatyard today article called A Guide to Cap Rate Dynamics.  Well, I have to tell you there is no one-size-fits-all answer.  I’ve seen 5 percent cap rates and I’ve seen 20 percent cap rates.  A lot depends on whether it’s a seller’s or buyer’s market.   A lot depends on what type of marina.  Yeah, I know that doesn’t help when a one or two percent difference can mean the difference between “deal or no deal”.

The thing of it is, few appraisers know how to get marina cap rates.  It isn’t about just making a phone call and asking.  I wish I had ten dollars for every bad marina cap rate I’ve seen.  Many times these are from supposedly verified marina cap rate sales and guess what?  They turn out NOT to be real sales at all.

It takes street credibility, a skill for begging, and conversational timing to get those marina cap rates.  You’re asking a business owner to reveal confidential information on their business.  This is something you’ll only find with the marina industry expert, John Simpson, MAI.  Getting real marina cap rate data is what I do all the time because it’s my business, which is something you can’t say for the run-of-the-mill, whatever-property-type-comes-my-way appraiser.

What happens when there aren’t any transactions or they aren’t arm’s-length?  I get that question a lot too.  Marina owners know when there aren’t any transactions.  When there are, they’re often too different for comparison between marinas.  I have a special way of answering that question.  I’ve had a Marina Investing and Management LinkedIn forum for nearly a decade where there are over a thousand marina owners and investors I can poll.  They tell me what marina cap rates they would do a deal at, what types of marinas they’d buy, and your truly extracts all the patterns.  You can only find that at

More About Marina Cap Rates

I’ve written a lot about marina cap rates.  Maybe I know a lot?  You be the judge.