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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest Forums > Boat Review and Purchase Forum > Boat Buyers & Sellers Forum
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  #21  
Old 02-19-2012
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Originally Posted by jackdale View Post
Would get a vehicle inspection on a used car? A home inspection? The latter is a bigger purchase, but the same principle.
A car? no I know enough about them to know, but a house? Yes, I would get an inspection. A boat, especially one in my price point, I am somewhere in the middle.

I am confident in my abilities to weed out the junk boats and after looking at several boats we think we have found the one that we would like to purchase. We did get in contact with a reputable and knowledgable marine surveyor in the ST. Pete area and he is going to check it out for us tomorrow afternoon.

We chose not to have it hauled and to just do an insurance survey. It is a 26 foot pearson in good overall condition. The previous owner had the keel bolts, sea cocks and wiring replaced over the last couple years. I plan to haul it out in two and a half months to paint it, inspect the hull and the job they did on the keel, and take care of any issues that may be present. We understand that any boat we buy at this price is going to need work and are prepared to do it. We are excited to have finally found the boat we have been searching for and are crossing our fingers that everything turns out okay.

Thanks for all of your comments, I felt like a survey on a boat this inexpensive would be a waste of money. But paying 300 for a second set of eyes to confirm my thoughts and find something I may have missed seems worth it.
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  #22  
Old 02-19-2012
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You'll find no lack of opinions here, but in the end, you have to weigh what you hear, and then do what feels right to you. I would though, in your position, ask the seller for documentation for the work he claims to have done. Not because you don't believe him, but just as backup should you haul the boat and find issues you were told were addressed.
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  #23  
Old 02-20-2012
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Survey went well, bought the boat today. Glad we did it for peace of mind. He checked the decks with his moisture meter and only found one spot up on the bow near a stanchion. Not bad for a 40 year old boat! He was as surprised with the condition of the boat as we were.
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Old 02-21-2012
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Congrats. Enjoy sailing her.
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  #25  
Old 02-21-2012
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I gotta ask, were you there when he did the survey...? I understand piece of mind, but you can't eat it and it's accepted at less places than American Express..

Did he do anything that you wouldn't have done...? Did he look in any cubby holes you might have missed...? Of the defects that were there, did he point out any that you weren't aware of, of wouldn't have found on your own in a structured self survey....?

A moisture meter is nice, but you can borrow one from most any cabinet or furniture maker.. A second set of eyes is nice but you could have taken the wife or a sailing buddy...I don't want to say you did wrong as it seems to have made you feel better about the purchase,

But similar to the car inspection which you/I feel qualified enough to do, did he do enough ( on a $5k boat) to justify the couple hundred "extra" for something you/I could do with a good checklist...?

Over and above all that Congratulations On Your New Boat...It's a big step no matter how you approach it...
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Last edited by Squidd; 02-21-2012 at 09:26 AM.
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  #26  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Squidd View Post
I gotta ask, were you there when he did the survey...? I understand piece of mind, but you can't eat it and it's accepted at less places than American Express..

Did he do anything that you wouldn't have done...? Did he look in any cubby holes you might have missed...? Of the defects that were there, did he point out any that you weren't aware of, of wouldn't have found on your own in a structured self survey....?

A moisture meter is nice, but you can borrow one from most any cabinet or furniture maker.. A second set of eyes is nice but you could have taken the wife or a sailing buddy...I don't want to say you did wrong as it seems to have made you feel better about the purchase,

But similar to the car inspection which you/I feel qualified enough to do, did he do enough ( on a $5k boat) to justify the couple hundred "extra" for something you/I could do with a good checklist...?

Over and above all that Congratulations On Your New Boat...It's a big step no matter how you approach it...
Both the previous owner and I were present for the survey. He asked the owner a ton of questions, he went in every cubby and crevice imaginable. He flipped every switch, checked every system and light, and checked every piece of gear.

When I checked the boat out myself the first time I was after the major problems. Had I gone in there second time with a very detailed checklist (which I would have done had I not paid the surveyor) I probably could have come up with the same results.

Three reasons why I chose to have the survey

1) Moisture Meter I didn't have access to one, didn't know anyone I could borrow one from, don't know how to properly use one. I really wanted to have the decks checked, especially around the mast. Could I have bought one and learned to use it and still saved a little money? Probably, and I will next time.

2) My wife While I was confident in my ability to weed through junk boats, any married guy will understand that it is good to have an "expert" confirm your own thoughts. Having a second set of more experienced eyes look the boat over will give her piece of mind which in turn will make my life easier. Had we not gotten a survey, the next time something broke or a problem arises the "I told you we should have had a survey" discussion might come up. Now I can point the blame elsewhere...

3) My lack of sailing experience While I have a lot of experience with boats, this is our first big sailboat. The surveyor checked out all the rigging, took all 4 sails out, he laid them in the grass and studied them, he put the sails up, checked the mast and boom. All things that someone who knows sailboats could do, I am new so I trusted his expertise on this one.

All in all was it worth it? For us, Yes. Lets be real though, If you know sailboats, understand what you are looking for and have a detailed checklist that you can consult to keep you on track, you can do your own survey. An Insurance company wont accept it most likely, but if you don't plan on getting insurance and really know what you are doing, do it yourself. Most surveyors are just guys with extensive boat knowledge and experience who took a test and joined a club. If you have the experience and knowledge part covered you are probably okay to skip paying someone to do it but do so at your own risk.
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Last edited by WildJasmine; 02-21-2012 at 02:00 PM.
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  #27  
Old 02-21-2012
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2) My wife ....the next time something broke or a problem arises the "I told you we should have had a survey" discussion might come up. Now I can point the blame elsewhere...
That's reason enough right there... Point taken...
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Old 02-21-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WildJasmine View Post
....Lets be real though, If you know sailboats, understand what you are looking for and have a detailed checklist that you can consult to keep you on track, you can do your own survey. An Insurance company wont accept it most likely, but if you don't plan on getting insurance and really know what you are doing, do it yourself. Most surveyors are just guys with extensive boat knowledge and experience who took a test and joined a club. If you have the experience and knowledge part covered you are probably okay to skip paying someone to do it.
I think this bad advice.

the more boats I've owned, and the longer I've sailed, the more I appreciate how limited and inadequate my expertise is, RELATIVE TO WHAT THERE IS TO KNOW.

I suspect, the less you know, the less you appreciate how much there is to know...
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  #29  
Old 02-21-2012
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I think this bad advice.

the more boats I've owned, and the longer I've sailed, the more I appreciate how limited and inadequate my expertise is, RELATIVE TO WHAT THERE IS TO KNOW.

I suspect, the less you know, the less you appreciate how much there is to know...
I agree, and I will add a "do so at your own risk". Most people who are willing to do their own survey are either fools or confident in their abilities. The fact is if you really know what you are looking for you will probably have just as good a survey as if you had hired your "average surveyor".

Do I think it might be worth it to spend a few hundred bucks to have a second set of experienced eyes check your inspection? Absolutely.

We spent less than $5000 on our boat and that is what the comment is based off, if you are spending much more I would absolutely recommend a survey to potentially save loads money or your life down the line.
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  #30  
Old 03-11-2012
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Re: Is it crazy not to get a survey

I surveyed my last boat, closing price was 11K. I followed the surveyor with a note pad and asked lots of questions. Here it is in a nutshell:

He found two things that I missed. They where fixed before purchase, not big things, but a 2-3 hundred bucks.

He asked me if I was winterizing it myself. I replied that for the first year I would have a pro do it as I was unfamiliar with inboards and it had pressure water, etc. He chuckled and told me to run up to the store and buy antifreeze. He told me what to do and I winterized it myself.

I walked away with a long list of little things I could do to improve the boat.

Back then the survey cost me six or seven hundred bucks. By my math it worked out.
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