Kinda on two ends of the spectrums there with the boats. Nitro's are nice but dont hold their value nearly as well as the Rangers.
Bass boat central is a great website. And everyone that owns a boat is going to have loyalty to that particular brand. I have ridden in quite a few boats and owned a few my self. I currently have a 97 Cobra 188D. Is a great boat, but def has a different feel than my buddies 08 Ranger Z21. But at the same time his boat is 2ft longer and has 50hp more too.
But there are soo many things to figure in, such as someone mentioning the EFI (huge thing to look for if you plan on fishing in and outside of CO because of jetting and elevation) and 2 stroke/4 stroke depending on the year. How much deck space is there, storage space, livewell space, single or dual consoles, hydraulic steering, hotfoot, electronics that are currently on the boat (upgrading to good ones is very expensive), trolling motor size..... The better equiped it is from the get go, the less you will spend later. (ie, expect to replace electronics if the boat is factory and hasnt been touched since 9
. How much space do you have to store it is a huge thing to think about also.
Also remember boats down in TX are used year round and the midwest are more seasonal because of our weather. Motor hours is a huge consideration also. Tons of stuff to think about here... I would suggest doing what Kodiak said and join a club and kinda get a feel for your likes and dislikes. Some boats look the same but have COMPLETELY different rides/performance. Plus you will become familiar with the basics of the boat from observing someone who has been doing it a while. You will see some good ways/bad ways to do things.
Always book the boat, NADA is a good start. Also compare the model to similar ones in the area and abroad. A boat in TX might cost less than a boat in CO because there are less bass boats here than there are there.
Keep us updated on what you choose. And post some pics up once you do get it!
Now that I am done babbling, am sure I forgot a few things and someone will chyme in here to help out.