Originally Posted by robertluster
...... the QUESTIONS: For a boat with a purchase price of about 10K, do I REALLY need a Survey? I've read the blogs and advice on what to look for and am not totally incompetent. No doubt someone with years of experience will find things I won't notice - but if I cover 95% myself with my own checklist/inspection, might that not be plenty good enough? Is there any cheap help available?
Relative to a newer more expensive boat, a $10K boat naturally has increased risks of something going seriously wrong with rigging or hull that could end up in disabling or sinking the boat. Those are risks to your life and savings. If it sinks or ends up on shore you will be forced to pay very high costs of removal. Unless you're outside of US jurisdiction, you cannot walk (or swim) away from a mess of broken fiberglass and leaking diesel fuel. If you go in open waters or offshore you may be endangering your life. With your budget you're unlikely to carry a life raft and related safety equipment.
Before considering going without a survey, I'd suggest trying to find a surveyor who can work with you and understand your needs. To be at all realistic you must assume that a few things on your $10K boat need to get fixed or replaced. A good surveyor can be well worth the the $300 or $500 fee by guiding you toward which things really need replacement, how to repair/replace cheaply, and which things only look ugly but do not endanger your boat.