Originally Posted by RobGallagher
You got some good advice so far. I'd like to add (somewhat tongue in cheek); Ask not what you will get from your survey, but, what you will add to your survey.
1. Show up early.
2. Have a flashlight, digital camera, paper, pencil, etc.
3. Expect to get hot, sweaty, down and dirty.
4. Prepare to fill water tanks, run power cords, hold a flashlight, help bend sails, flip a switch, whatever.
5. Ask questions. Lots of questions.
If you are really motivated, use information available to conduct your own survey first and have any questions you have come up with ready for the expert. Boat Inspection Trip Tips
Find a surveyor who will let you buy them out early for less $$ if they find a major issue.
If the broker takes issue with the survey results, laugh in his face.
Be prepared to walk away.
Don't ever fall in love with something that can't love you back.
The option of stopping the survey early is a great point to ask when you speak with the surveyor.
I was able to do this, and my surveyor was happy to stop the after 4 hours, and charged me $100/hr for his time. I received no report on the vessel, other than confirmation of the obvious issue.
Continuing the story, however; the owner fixed the major (keel) issue which halted the survey, and I asked the surveyor if we could resume the survey from where he left off. The surveyor said that he would, that he would charge me $100/hr again (which I would have done) PLUS $200 to cover his travel expenses to make a 5 mile trip
This is when I learned that not all pirates have eye patches. I found another surveyor.
Ask your surveyor how s/he would handle halting a survey if a major issue is found. Also ask if, after an issue is addressed, s/he would continue a survey, and what the charges would be.