Re: Willowleaf - That Easky doesn’t appear to be the LV version.
Re: the P&H Vela - I don’t think sellers usually gets offended if someone makes a slightly lower offer, they can always say no. Of course you can never tell with people, so I think it’s wisest to play it by ear, unless you truly would not make the trip if you couldn’t get it for $800. In that case I think it’s reasonable to state that on the phone. Better, IMHO, than email. Shows you’re serious. When I sell stuff on CL I always tell prospective buyers I’ll only negotiate in person.
Here’s my opinion: if the boat fits you well and you like the way it feels, $900 for a fiberglass boat in great condition is a fine deal. P&H is a very good brand. By way of comparison, the Easky retails for around $1300; whereas a fiberglass sea kayak by a good brand retails around $3500- $4000.
But the key is you and how you like it. To me, if you can afford it, a hundred more for a boat you love is much better than saving a bit for a meh boat. If you were able easily to paddle a few others beforehand, that would give you a means of comparison. We bought our Easky LV to replace a way-too-big boat, and when we got it we both liked it. It wasn’t until after we’d paddled a few smaller boats that we began to notice the things we liked less well about the Easky. It’s not that it’s a bad boat, it’s a good boat. It is nice and lightweight, very versatile, and handles well, and is beginner-friendly. However I still think the non-LV version will be too big for you.
But, above all, whether a boat is great or not depends on the paddler. You will likely not find your dream boat on the first shot. That being said, a P&H Vela could well qualify as many smaller paddlers’ dream boat, from what I have heard.
Maybe Celia will come by and give you some info.