Jeff Gittus is a recently retired business owner and one of the first people to purchase a boat berth at Hidden Harbour Marina. He lives in Melbourne and enjoys escaping the city on his boat fishing around the southern end of Port Phillip Bay. We recently grabbed 5 minutes with Jeff to find out more about the process he went through to buy a boat berth and what he is using it for. Jeff’s Story
Were you familiar with Safety Beach and the Mornington Peninsula?
I’ve been boating for 40 years down on the Mornington Peninsula. I’ve also recently bought land for a holiday house in Martha Cove.
What do you use the berth for?
I really love to fish and have one of my boats berthed there.
How did you first find out about Hidden Harbour Marina?
I found out about Hidden Harbour Marina through word of mouth – I have friends in the Martha Cove area. I was one of the first to buy – I bought off the plan 3 years ago. I actually purchased two berths but my friend wanted one so I sold it to him.
What made you want to look into it?
I was spending 12k a year on leasing, it’s better to spend that on your own berth, which will increase in value so your money is working for you. Can’t go wrong – only limited amount of berths so you cant lose money.
It’s the best area to be in – access to southern end of the Bay. When I’m boating it’s because I want to get away from where I live in Melbourne, so the Northern end of the bay doesn’t interest me. Docklands is always windy.
What questions did you have during the sales process – what was important to you before making the decision?
I didn’t have too many questions – I just knew it was a great opportunity.
Did you look at other options – were you at another marina?
I had a rental berth down in another marina area but I’d rather have a free hold berth than leasing.
I was spending 12k a year on leasing, it’s better to spend that on your own berth, which will increase in value so your money is working for you.
The first thing is location – access to the southern end of the bay. Plus in Port Philip Bay you really need to get your boat out of the weather. Hidden Harbour is so protected. Other points I’d add:
It’s nice and easy, don’t have to battle the crowds at launching ramps (my boat now is too big to launch now anyway), easy access to the bay – southern end.
Fuel, Water, power – all the facilities, very convenient parking
24 hour Security – that’s a really big thing when you don’t live near your boat. You want to make sure it’s looked after.
What would you say to others considering buying a berth at Hidden Harbour?
I think it’s a great idea. You are better off putting your money is something that will appreciate in value.
Get easy access to the water. Makes a lot of sense. Weather proof.
It’s at the Southern end of bay – which is a big benefit.
Do you know the other berth owners?
Yes it’s a great community down at the marina. The other day I just stopped by and walked down jetty, and met a new bloke and had a good chat. There is a sense of community in the whole Martha Cove area that has developed – I’m part of a Martha Cove Fishing club and I here there’s a wine club too.
What’s the harbour like?
Coming in and out of harbour is very easy – no shallow bars. Plus the harbour itself is very healthy – it’s clear and you’ll often see fish, which is a good sign.
What are the ongoing costs?
We have an owner’s corporation and they are very good – very approachable and always improving. Everything is very new and in good order. Still I often seeing them driving around with a camera, making sure everything is up to scratch. We get a quarterly bill from them and also a small amount charged from South East Water.
What are your tips for boating around Safety Beach, Martha Cove?
Snapper season has just started – there’s some great fishing. I like fishing around the heads, where the rip is. I never fish around town. I want less people and fewer boats.
There are not a lot of places to get out of the weather in Port Phillip Bay. You want to make sure you have a safe place for your boat.
The southern end of Port Philip bay is the more holidaying end, more recreational. In summer it’s great to head down around Sorrento.
Want to win a free boat berth over summer?