Boat Survey

Jun 16, 2019
3
Catalina 22 Kenosha
Wouldn’t it make sense to have a survey done before a sailboat is put up for sale ?
 
Jan 11, 2014
7,958
Sabre 362 113 Fair Haven, NY
Why?

I would not trust a survey paid for by the seller. When purchasing a boat the broker and seller are working against me, the surveyor works for me.
 
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Apr 8, 2011
481
Hunter 36 Deale, MD
Wouldn’t it make sense to have a survey done before a sailboat is put up for sale ?
That would mean the owner pays for the survey, and gets to pick their own surveyor, and since the surveyor is working for them its not necessarily to the benefit of the buyer. If the buyer pays for the survey, they get someone working for them to identify everything that's wrong.

That said, it really is up to the buyer to have sufficient knowledge to do a walk through of a boat and do a rough determination of value and condition in order to make an offer to the seller - contingent on the survey. I kind of do think this is backward - I really would like to know everything about a boat before I make an offer. But you do get to negotiate on anything the surveyor finds, so the offer accepted is often just a starting point. But the seller does kind of have you in a bit of a bind if you've already spent almost $1,000 on a survey, and may refuse to negotiate if they can claim "of course the hatches leak, that's wear and tear on a boat this age".

That's why I'm an advocate of buyer's brokers. If you get a good one, they'll be more than capable of giving a boat a good once-over and spotting things that you might not, and that can help you decide whether to make an offer and invest in the survey. That costs you $0.
 
Sep 25, 2008
6,348
Alden 50 Sarasota, Florida
Wouldn’t it make sense to have a survey done before a sailboat is put up for sale ?
Regardless of whether the seller or you pay for a survey of a boat not under contract, the seller could sell to someone else after you paid for a survey wasting your time and money. It serves no purpose for you to survey a boat prior to agreeing to a price and signing a contract
 
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May 17, 2004
3,537
Beneteau Oceanis 37 LE Havre de Grace
The boat model is basically the same as with house buying in this case - Buyer makes an offer, seller accepts, buyer pays for an inspection, and they can negotiate based on findings. Doing it any other way invites the lack of impartiality and other issues raised above.
 
Apr 8, 2010
1,636
Ericson Yachts Olson 34 28400 Portland OR
Perhaps some here , while well intended, are reading more into the OP's post than was meant.
Since a savvy purchaser is always going to get a survey anyway, it's really helpful to know what issues might be "red flags" for a transaction.
Another common reason for a survey is to assess condition before going off shore.
And, after a decade or so the owner wants to assess the structural condition of his/her boat.

Example: we are presently doing a complete re-fit of our boat and I had the deck sounded and moisture checked by a very experienced surveyor before we took it to the shop. Luck for me there were only two small areas of core moisture, about 5" X 5". And better yet our whole cockpit sole was dry.

Survey's are done for several different reasons. Sometimes your insurer might want one (cynical aside: a friend in the industry sez that often they just want to be certain that the asset actually exists...)
Good luck and I hope that your current good survey helps to enthuse a new prospective owner.
 
Jan 22, 2008
8,050
Beneteau 323 Annapolis MD
Wouldn’t it make sense to have a survey done before a sailboat is put up for sale ?
If the seller is paying the surveyor, you can bet your rum that he will find a few little things, just so the buyer would think he did the survey. Depends on how "uninformed" the buyer is. Otherwise, CYOA.
 
Jan 11, 2014
7,958
Sabre 362 113 Fair Haven, NY
Survey's are done for several different reasons. Sometimes your insurer might want one (cynical aside: a friend in the industry sez that often they just want to be certain that the asset actually exists...)
Good luck and I hope that your current good survey helps to enthuse a new prospective owner.
A recent survey done for some other purpose, such as insurance, going off shore, etc is available then certainly it may help justify the asking price and provide some guidance for a potential buyer. Paying for a pre-sale survey for no particular reason other than selling the boat just adds to the selling cost. Which can get steep quickly depending on the buyer's survey.
 

capta

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Jun 4, 2009
4,320
Pearson 530 Admiralty Bay, Bequia SVG
Most agreements for sale are done before a survey and the price agreed is subject to the findings of the surveyor. After the survey the price can be renegotiated by what the surveyor found. The buyer pays for the survey, which he/she owns, and the haul out for the survey, unless something is negotiated with the seller as he/she may want to paint the bottom or do repairs in case the boat doesn't sell or to help the sale.
 
Jan 7, 2011
3,031
Oday 322 East Chicago, IN
Might make sense if your purpose is to find any issues and fix them before putting her up for sale.

Otherwise, as others have said, most buyers would not trust “your” surveyor.

But I have looked at “previous“ surveys of boats I was interested in, just to get an idea if potential issues. I would still hire my own surveyor if I was serious about buying.

Too bad though...would be nice to have a survey in had to show prospective buyers and save everyone (except the surveyors) the trouble and expense....


Greg
 
Aug 28, 2006
499
Bavaria 35E seattle
Having been in the boat business, I'd say Yes, absolutely. I wish more sellers did this. Why? Because then you'll know what's wrong with the boat that you might not necessarily see. And I've seen many deals go south after the buyer's survey caused those purchasers to walk away. Better to know beforehand and address issues that will inevitably be found out.
 

DougM

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Jul 24, 2005
2,192
Beneteau 323 Manistee, MI
Personally, I would never purchase a boat based upon an owner‘s survey.
That said, I just had what I consider to have been a thorough insurance survey completed at the request of my insurer. I believe that survey would be a positive piece of information. If I do put the boat on the market this year, I would certainly let the potential buyer look at the findings. At the same time I would strongly recommend that the person obtain their own survey.