The ad we put on Craig's list while we were in Ecuador and in Boat Journal after we got back listed both our email address and our telephone number. If people phoned, we suggested they email unless they didn't have access to the internet. If people emailed, we sent them a package which included about 40 pictures of Dowager together with a fairly long narrative of her history and perks, plus a listing of her details (cedar planks, Loran, full size fridge, etc. etc).
Most of the people who made first contact, we never heard from again, but we still have had a fairly good response so we've shown the boat several times now.
The first fellow was quite round and couldn't get into the engine room, which requires a twist around the engine. Brian told him, "Well...you won't be buying this boat", but he stuck around for the rest of the tour anyways and was good enough to point out Dowager's flaws to us.
"Don't you dare start the boat for anyone again, unless we know they're serious", Shelley wagged her finger at Brian.
We had one couple that can't decide whether to buy a cabin on Bowen Island (or some similar place) or buy a boat. "Come on people!" We all know they'll be buying a cabin.
We had another couple, the man stiff from his back operation. They explained he would be wearing the brace for some time. Our email description points out that there are ladders coming up from the fo'c'sle and down into the back cabin and still they came. They were additionally allergic to cats. Flo, our cat, of course hung around them the whole time they looked through the boat. (Good FloCat!)
We have had people make appointments and cancel and re-schedule and then cancel again. We're not quite sure what that one is? We've had promises of phone calls to be returned that never happen and arrivals an hour ahead of the scheduled time. We had one fellow that phoned and emailed us at least seven times, a couple of those inappropriately late in the evening, and then he never did show up to view the boat. We've had people confess to us that they've been looking for the "perfect" boat for a year and a half now. (Listen Buddy, after a year and a half, the perfect boat ain't out there for you!)
You have to recognize the boat is 42 feet long and 11 feet wide. There's a fo'c'sle in the front, a wheelhouse, the galley (off of which is the doorway to the engine room), the back salon area and the head (in that order). A quick tour takes less than a minute but most people stay at least an hour (sometimes two). We point out all the storage Dowager has and the full size fridge (a real perk on a boat). We explain she has hot water and a shower and how the salon settee breaks down easily into a comfy double bed. Our visitors point out her warts (and she has many). Built in 1931, we should look so good when we're 77! None of her warts makes her any less sea worthy; we had her surveyed and spent a disgusting amount of money on her bottom just a few weeks ago.
Boats are a lifestyle. Lots of the calls we've received have been from people interested in living aboard. At the beginning, we dutifully explained that there are very few places to live aboard in Vancouver. We were grandfathered to live where we are and they are not accepting any more liveaboards. Someone very serious about living aboard can probably get moorage in the Fraser River but someone very serious about living aboard would have found that out already. After awhile, we stopped being dutiful and left it that the assumable moorage we were offering did not cover liveaboard. The rest they can figure out for themselves.