The complete guide to personal watercraft financing

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Ask a Lender
October 11, 2017 | Updated October 16, 2017


Key Points

Ideas for financing personal watercraft

  • Personal loans
  • Dealer financing
  • Home equity loan

Interested in buying a new personal watercraft, such as a Jet Ski or other water scooter? Though typically more affordable than larger boats, personal watercraft are still major purchases. Financing for personal watercraft can require a little creativity. Be sure to check rates and terms to find the best deal for you.

Jet Ski loans

Jet Ski is actually the Kawasaki brand of personal watercraft. But “jet ski” is often used as a generic term for any jet-powered watercraft in which the rider sits on top of the craft. The technical term for these vehicles, however, is “personal watercraft.”

Costs for personal watercraft can range from $5,000 to $18,000. Personal watercraft financing is often available from dealers, either through in-house financing or, more commonly, through partnerships with banks or other financial institutions. Some banks offer loans specifically for powersport vehicle purchases, including personal watercraft.

Personal loans

If dealer financing isn’t favorable, you can also check into a personal loan to finance your personal watercraft. Personal loans are unsecured, fixed-term installment loans that can be used for a variety of purposes. One benefit of using a personal loan is that if you are ever unable to make payments on the loan, the bank cannot repossess your personal watercraft. Because this is riskier to the lender, however, you can expect to pay higher interest rates than you would on a secured loan, such as an auto loan.

Home equity loans

Home equity lines of credit (HELOCs) are versatile financing tools that can be used for a variety of purposes — including the purchase of vehicles such as personal watercraft.

To qualify for a home equity line of credit, you must have a substantial amount of equity in your home. You’re using that equity to back the loan. The downside is that if you are ever unable to repay the money you’ve borrowed, you are putting your home at risk.

Financing Jet Ski travel trailers

You’ve got your jet ski … now how do you get it to the water? If you decide you need a trailer to haul your personal watercraft around, you’re looking at several hundred dollars on top of your jet ski purchase. Thankfully, jet ski trailers can often be financed as well.

Jet ski trailers come in different varieties — from trailers for single jet skis, to boat and jet ski combo trailers — that let you haul multiple vehicles at once. There are even custom-built personal watercraft trailers that can be quite pricey.

Some trailer manufacturers offer financing on trailers through partnerships with banks. You could also use an unsecured personal loan or a HELOC to finance the purchase of a trailer, just as with a personal watercraft. Just remember that the same cautions apply — if you use a HELOC to purchase a trailer and fail to repay the loan, your home could be at risk.

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