I guess that I agree with you SF.
Prior to hiring either surveyor, I contacted Tony Knowles (IIRC you had recommended Tony to me). Tony called me back, but indicated that he was busy indefinitely. In an effort to be helpful, Tony pointed me to Surveyor #1.
I was disappointed with Surveyor #1, because;
- When asked how much a survey would cost, he replied between 700-800 dollars. After I agreed to hire him, he told me that the charge would be $800.
- He also wanted ½ up front, cash or credit card only, with an additional $10 surcharge to take a credit card.
- The broker raised his concern that he had tried several times to reach the surveyor without success. The broker and the surveyor had offices on the same street of the same town.
- On the day of the survey, this surveyor showed up 30 minutes late (Google tells me that this was 14 miles from his office).
- The broker was shocked at the price/foot ($23.14) that he charged for his survey.
- After a serious issue was discovered, he suggested that the survey be halted, but agreed to accept $100/hr for his time.
After the issue was addressed, I contacted him again to inquire what the cost of completing the survey would be. He told me he would complete the survey for the remaining $400, plus $200 for travel. It was at this point that I decided enough was enough.
I then contacted Tony again, but Tony indicated that he was still busy indefinitely... I therefore contracted with surveyor #2. I was tempted to contact surveyor #3, who would have charged $16/foot, and impressed me when I had the chance to meet him during the initial survey (he was surveying another boat). The reason that I did not hire #3 is that he was well known by the broker, and I did not want a potential conflict of interest.
Surveyor #2 had full SAMS accreditation, and was acceptable to my insurance company.