Sailing is one of the greenest activities. Wind energy is used instead of fuel most of the time. Fuel is used when there is no wind, when heading directly into the wind or when navigating narrow channels. Even when fuel is used, the consumption is much less compared to powerboats.
Living in smaller spaces than a typical house uses less energy and fewer of the world’s resources, both for the initial build and ongoing maintenance. A smaller size means fewer building materials used and less energy consumed for air-conditioning or heating.
In some cases a sailboat owner can be partially or totally self sufficient by using solar power or wind turbines for electric power.
Living on a sailboat is a way to live in a smaller space and have an enjoyable lifestyle. You would usually be living in prime waterfront locations. You pay marina fees, but no real estate tax.
The question is what size is comfortable. Although some people live in thirty-foot boats, I recommend at least fifty feet which feels more like a home. Not only is the boat longer, but is also wider. The Beneteau Sense 50 has a beam (width) of 15 feet 11 inches.
At the Palm Beach boat show last spring, I had the opportunity to experience a Beneteau Sense 50 at the dock. Besides the main salon, there were three staterooms, one of which was configured as an office. The boat’s purposely designed liveaboard comforts appeal to those who don’t wish to feel as if they’re camping out when they spend time on the boat.
Docking this boat is unusually easy for its size. A joystick-controlled Dock & Go system with a powerful bow thruster and a Yanmar sail drive pivots 360 degrees. The boat literally can spin in a complete circle within its own length.
More information can be found at http://www.beneteauusa.com/Sailboats/Sense/Sense-50
Please comment on what size sailboat you think is ideal for living aboard.