Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Narragansett Bay
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Rep Power: 14
I''ll offer my suggestions based upon my experiences in the yacht buying process.
"Below is a list of things I need to do. What order worked best for you??? Am I leaving anything out??"
"Survey - out of the water (or should i only do in the water?)"
Assuming you have already made initial inspections and convinced yourself this 1977 38 ft. cutter is the boat you want, do some research into the best surveyor you can afford and follow his lead. It is not required, but I found that being with the surveyor during the entire survey (it took all day) was both an education and a means of bonding with the boat. The out of water survey is important since damage below the waterline (such as grounding, running gear condition, osmosis blisters and delamination) could be very costly to repair.
"Survey - in the water"
The boat should be surveyed in-water prior to (of course), during and after the sea-trial. Your surveyor will check all 12v & 120v electrical & mechanical systems so it''s necessary to connect to shore power. How the boat behaves under way while sailing and motoring should be important to your final decision.
"Make an Offer"
This is usually done prior to the survey, based upon findings from your initial inspection. Since the cost of the survey and the haul-out is the responsibility of the buyer, you need acceptance of your offer before foolishly taking on those expenses. During my most recent boat purchase, my surveyor discovered several conditions requiring repair or replacement . . . enabling me to adjust my final offer.
"Sail Her (I have seen her, but not sailed)"
This goes without saying . . . sail her to determine if all systems and hardware function properly (the list is too long for this post).
"Apply for Insurance"
I would recommend inquiring about insurance prior to making the initial offer for two reasons. You need to know your monthly budget limitations during boat ownership and the time span between Seller offer acceptance and closing is limited. Therefore, line up all your ducks beforehand.
"Apply for Boat Loan (who would you recommend as a lender?)"
See above, since qualifying for a loan could take several days. Ask advice from local brokers and shop around for the best lending rate.
"Slip – the boat comes with a slip I would like to keep. I don’t know much about slip transfers. I know I need insurance to apply for the slip."
The marina will require insurance . . . some even want to be listed as insurer. Check to see if there is a waiting list for that marina; you may not be eligible for the current or upcoming season. There is a three year wait for mine, but fortunately I had a slip from my prior boat.
"One more question - when I take the boat out for a test-sail... Should I ask the current owner to sail it?"
Normally, the broker, or owner''s agent assumes the role of "Ship''s Master" during the sea trial. You should not be required to due to liability issues. I was surprised to see the Owner take part in all events during my purchase proceedings . . . shows good faith on the owner''s part. Ask the owner or his broker; this is not an unreasonable request.
After finding the boat I wanted and before making an offer, it was important to find out as much about that model and year as possible. Intensive research into known issues from current and prior owners, owner''s internet forums and published material, revealed much about potential underlying problems that may not be visually obvious. I was able to focus on these potential problem areas and coupled with a very detailed surveyor''s report, am now completely confident that I made a good choice.
Best of luck, Steve