Re: How long is a survey good for?
An 'insurance survey' is a bit of a 'rubber stamp' for people renewing their insurance. Nowhere near as thorough as a proper survey.
Your own insurance company may accept the insurance survey since it's less than 5 years old, but if you're financing the bank may not. It also won't really tell you what you need to know about the boat to make a fair decision on purchase, esp as a 'first time buyer'.
Bottom line the 'right thing' to do is get a proper purchase survey. Buying a boat without a thorough inspection of the underwater bits is a risky maneuver.. ask yourself can you afford to throw away the $10K if you buy wrong??
1984 Fast/Nicholson 345 "FastForward"
".. there is much you could do at sea with common sense.. and very little you could do without it.."
Capt G E Ericson (from "The Cruel Sea" by Nicholas Monsarrat)