Picking a surveyer
I think you both overlook an important detail. No reputable surveyor is going to be swayed by a low life broker and expect to eat regualrly. As the last broker I worked with stated, he would rather have the very best vs. a poor one because the validity and clarity of the survey becomes a negotiation tool. If that data sways a buyer it should also sway the seller to move as well. A high quality survey will help the buyer move the seller closer to a negotiation that works becuase there is real data to sway both parties. Good surveys help close deals not just warn you off poor boats.
Most boat deals that go bad are not because the surveyor found out there was a 3 ft hole in the hull. They often end up at an impass over a collection of large and small issues that can be negotiated with MONEY to the satisfaction of each party. When you both agree to terms you have a deal and the broker gets paid. yes the broker has a vested interest in closing the deal, so do I when I''m trying to buy a boat.
Getting a list of names from a broker is nothing to worry about. You still have to check them out with other sources and look for real credentials and experience to make sure they are qualified.
Getting a list of names should include talking to anyone you can talk to including the broker. It''s up to you to hire a qualified person you really want to work with. Most professionals go with the money. As a professionsal (not a surveyor) it always works for me and my relationships with clients. If you pay - I work for you 100%. What idiot surveyor would rig a survey for a broker that isn''t going to pay them a nickel vs. the client that will spread word all around about what a jerk he was?
If you need to come in from out of town call local marinias and it usually comes out after a few calls which names are the good ones. Unless you are in a alrge boat market everyone generally knows everyone else. It''s not a bad thing.