Thursday, August 27, 2015

The Used Boat Buying Process

You've looked long and hard and finally found the boat you want and are ready to buy. So what's the normal process?
Making An Offer
Having looked at a few boats you should have some idea of the relative value of the boat you want to buy. You should expect to pay a fair market value. You are probably looking to buy as cheaply as possible but bear in mind that the vendor is looking to get as much as he or she possibly can. Boats often sell below the advertised price so don't be afraid to make an offer but make your offer a reasonable one. It's better to have your offer considered rather than rejected outright. If you can reach an agreement quickly and amicably from a reasonable starting point then the whole buying experience will be a better one. More than likely you will be negotiating with a broker. Their job is to get the best price they can for the vendor not help you get a bargain.
Signing The Agreement
Having agreed a price it is usual to sign a sales agreement and pay a holding deposit. The agreement to purchase is subject to the fulfillment of conditions which normally include a survey and sea trial and may include an engine and rig inspection. The sales agreement is normally 30 days with the survey and sea trial within 14 days.
Organising a Survey
Find a reliable surveyor experienced in the type of boat you are purchasing. The broker will have a list and it's also a good idea to ask around and get some recommendations. Also most states have a marine surveyors association that can provide a list.The survey expenses are normally at the purchasers cost and the deposit is refundable if the sale does not proceed.
If at all possible attend the survey so you can discuss the boat with your surveyor. This is your main chance to find out about the boat you are purchasing from some one who is representing your interests. Going through the boat with the surveyor will put his report in perspective. Just reading the written report can be alarming if you haven't actually seen what he is talking about.
Conducting a Sea Trial
The sea trial is your opportunity to check that everything works OK and is as described in the inventory. Make a list and go through it. Don't be rushed.
Making the Final Decision
The sales agreement should give you a few days to consider the survey report and make a decision on whether to proceed or not. Expect the survey report to list some items for your attention. No boat is going to be perfect. Depending on the nature of the items you may negotiate some compensation prior to agreeing to the sale. If the survey uncovers some major problems you can walk away or, depending on the nature of the problem, get the vendor to fix it and complete the sale. Get advice from your surveyor.

Once you are happy, sign the acceptance on the sales agreement and arrange to transfer the balance of the purchase price to the vendor or broker before the agreed completion date. Ensure you receive all the appropriate documentation and proof of ownership.
Posted By: Stowaway Marine