This article is sponsored by Boats by George.
Have you recently caught the boating bug? Whether you are dipping your toe into boating waters for the first time, or are ready to take the plunge and buy a boat, Adam Pensel of Boats by George has the inside scoop for you.
Adam Pensel is the son of George Pensel, owner of Boats by George, and is also the company’s Marketing Manager and Sales & Delivery Specialist. Adam has a younger brother named Andrew who also works at the company – George, his wife Patty, and both sons run Boats by George together.
When he’s not out on the water, you’ll find Adam climbing mountains (and skiing them in the winter). Adam is an aspiring 46er who has climbed over 50 peaks, many in the company of his four-year-old German Shepherd/Australian Shepherd mix, Marley. His first boat? A 1960s or 1970s Wahoo.
We recently sat down with Adam and discussed the number one rookie mistake new boaters make, why it often makes sense to buy a boat instead of rent, tips for first-time boat buyers, and what you can expect when you buy a boat from Boats by George.
Who Should Take a Boating Safety Course and Why?
Boating safety is, of course, foremost on every Lake George boater’s mind right now. It’s an extremely important facet of boating, regardless of where you are boating or whether you are buying or renting a boat. In Lake George, anyone born after 1996 must have completed a New York State boater’s safety course before being able to operate a boat.
Boats by George takes it a step further and recommends all new boaters take a safety course. They do occasionally host such a course at their facilities – simply ask the staff when the next course will be available, or if they can help you find one.
At Boats by George, every new boat includes a full-on water instruction and demonstration. While it doesn’t officially certify boaters, it will give you direct, on-the-water instruction that is not offered through the safety courses.
What’s The Biggest Rookie Boating Mistake?
If you are new to boating, you may have found that when you took a rental or your newly purchased boat out on the waters of Lake George on a Sunday afternoon, your nerves got the best of you. If so, don’t feel alone.
The number one mistake Adam sees new boaters make is panicking when docking. “A lot of times when they’re new they’re terrified of docking and they panic,” he says. “That’s usually when they jam their boat into gear and end up doing more damage.”
Rookies should relax and not stress out about putting a small dent in a boat – this stuff happens, and it’s usually repaired fairly easily. “Just take your time, do what’s comfortable for you, and as long as you moderate your speed, nothing too bad is going to happen,” Adam says.
How Do You Know When You Should Buy a Boat Instead of Rent?
If you’re thinking about buying a boat, the first question you might ask yourself is, is it worth it? Should you just keep renting a boat instead?
According to Adam, you will find many of the rental boats on Lake George are small and a bit cramped, especially if you’re planning on taking out large groups of people. (And once people know you like to boat on Lake George, don’t be surprised if your family and friends suddenly grow a bit closer.) Buying your own boat allows you to customize it for your specific needs and interests, including how many people it can hold and what features it has.
Having your own boat also saves time. “If you’re going to make a significant investment like this you want to have as much time on the water as you can, and the way to do that is via ownership,” Adam said. For an additional small fee, Boats by George offers a Quick Launch Program where you can call ahead and the staff will get your boat uncovered and ready to go.
When asked the primary reason why people buy boats – for traveling, fishing, entertaining, etc. – Adam replied that people buy boats to make memories. It’s all about bringing everyone together, spending time with friends and family, and experiencing the pristine waters of Lake George.
What to Do Before Buying a Boat
When asked what is the one thing a first-time boat buyer should look for and why Adam responded, “Somebody who owns a boat – someone they can lean on for information and can talk to about their experiences and what they’ve dealt with over time.”
When buying a boat you need to do a good amount of research on both the different types of boats available, and the different boat dealers you can buy from. Boats by George can walk you through the research process and guide you in the right direction as you figure out what kind of a boater you’re going to be.
What is the Boats by George Difference?
Buying a boat is a big deal. Outside of purchasing a home, it’s probably one of the biggest purchases you’ll ever make. Adam states, “Many people save for their entire lives for this moment.”
That’s a big responsibility for both the buyer and the seller. The boat buyer, and especially a first-time buyer, is usually nervous about working with cold and pushy dealers, maybe ending up with something that isn’t quite right for their needs.
Because of this, Adam challenges himself to provide personalized attention to every individual that walks in the door. He and the rest of the crew are emotionally invested in the purchases people make at Boats by George, and for him, making dreams come true is one of the best parts of working there. Each customer is valued and appreciated, and they won’t leave without having all their needs met and concerns addressed.
“Think full service – we take care of everything,” Adam says.
The company has recently poured a substantial amount of money into a brand new service center that allows them to store over 300 boats during the winter, as boat storage is a significant aspect of boat ownership that many people often forget to take into account.
And, did you know that Boats by George is celebrating 35 years in business this year?!
- They’ve been a Cobalt dealer since 1983
- They’ve been a Four Winds dealer since 1998
- They’ve been one of the top 10 Cobalt dealers in the world for the past five years
- They’ve been a market share leader in Lake George for the past five years
As Boats by George looks to the future they hope to increase their presence on the lake by offering more places where people can keep their boats on the water, and might even consider expanding beyond Lake George.
Are You Ready to Take the Plunge?
Are you imagining yourself in a beautiful boat cruising the waters of Lake George?
Let Boats by George use their 35 years of experience in the boating industry to guide you into the world of boating and boat ownership.