I am about to take the plunge and buy my first cruising yacht. I have sailed and raced dinghies all my life but I have promised myself something to get me and my wife afloat in comfort. We are based on the west coast of Scotland and the budget dictates second hand. However, I don't want a project and the wife insists on comfort and reliability but appropriate for exploring this wonderful coast. I have followed some of the posts on this site and understand something of the conflict between those who advocate real boats and those happy with AWBs. I think we fall into the latter category and have been looking at Hanse, Bavaria and Jeanneau: around the 30ft mark and around 5 / 6 years old would fit our budget. This is my pension pot at stake so I want to get it right. I really would welcome advice on the strength and weaknesses of suitable boats. Also, it seems to me that most boats are sold through brokers; are there any protocols I should follow? Is the asking price sacrosanct or what sort of offer might be made without causing offence?