Should I be scared??? What would you do??? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 23 Old 01-26-2014 Thread Starter
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Should I be scared??? What would you do???

Good morning
My "Admiral" and I are looking at two boats with the intention to buy one pending surveys and sea trials.

The one that catches our attention the most is in the northern US. When I asked the "broker" how do I make an offer and buy the boat at this time of year (lake is frozen solid) without a "sea trial" ????

His answer was " What do you expect to find in a sea trial" ... Giving me the impression that one isn't needed!!!!!!

So talking to a broker that makes statements like that scare me a bit .... Am I right to feel that way ...???

How DO you buy a boat at this time of year??

Should I find a broker to work for me in purchasing the boat??? Will that be difficult as the boat will only be in the low30k range or less.

Thanks as usual
Bill
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post #2 of 23 Old 01-26-2014
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Re: Should I be scared??? What would you do???

Write a contingency sale is pending sea trial and survey. Bought a boat in the past in February . Put down 20%. Showed I had the other 80%. Closing was after sea trial . Owner/ broker were motivated to get that done ASAP .
Also bought a different boat. Did closing but had " hold back of 15% of price placed in escrow account. Made offer after survey on land and running engine with water intake feed by garden hose. Escrow released after boat commissioned and seatrialed.
In short,it can be done if owner/ broker are honest and want to sell the boat. If not amenable there's something up so stay away. In both my cases things worked out and got some money back for small stuff with second boat.
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post #3 of 23 Old 01-26-2014
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Re: Should I be scared??? What would you do???

I'd say wrong boat, wrong broker..

While people may buy a boat without a sea trial, I'd also ask what specifically would you gather from one that would make your decision one way or another if the survey came back clean...??

If a sea trial is critical your decision making process I think you'll have to wait till spring IMHO...
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post #4 of 23 Old 01-26-2014
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Re: Should I be scared??? What would you do???

Good advice from Outbound.

A sea trial can be held sometime in March, and that's only a month or 6 weeks from now. I bought my boat in winter and had to wait quite a bit longer than that for the sea trial. There's nothing unusual about it.

The selling broker represents the boat's owner, not you. The owner's interest is in closing a deal asap. Your interest is in having a survey and sea trial. When I bought my boat, I engaged a broker to represent my interests, and I recommend you do too.

Last edited by Sailormon6; 01-26-2014 at 09:14 AM.
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post #5 of 23 Old 01-26-2014
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Re: Should I be scared??? What would you do???

What Outbound said...

We began the purchase of our current boat in February. We couldn't even view the boat for a month or so (it was located on an island in Lake Superior), and then had to wait even longer for water to thaw. When we finally made the offer it was contingent on a satisfactory survey AND a sea trial. Deal accepted, 10% down, the rest paid when contract was satisfied. We waited for months. Everything worked out in the end.

A broker is always motivated to move the boat right now. It's how they get paid. Ignore the pressure and do what is right for you. Make the offer that works for you. They may not accept it, but that is the seller's right. If you can't strike a deal, move on. There's lots of boat out there.
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post #6 of 23 Old 01-26-2014
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Re: Should I be scared??? What would you do???

All of the above advice is solid. IMO any long distance keelboat purchase at any time of year should be contingent upon seatrial, survey, and inventory verification.
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post #7 of 23 Old 01-26-2014
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Re: Should I be scared??? What would you do???

How good a sailor are you?
Are you going to be able to evaluate the boat under sail? Do you have the skills to recognize a problem if there is one?

I can't imagine buying a boat without sailing it. I wouldn't by a car without driving it. I wouldn't buy a guitar without playing it.

If I was buying a horse I would not need to ride it. I don't ride. There is little I could learn from a test ride. I would even know what to do or what to look for.

Giddyap!
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post #8 of 23 Old 01-26-2014
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Re: Should I be scared??? What would you do???

Quote:
Originally Posted by bobperry View Post
How good a sailor are you?
Are you going to be able to evaluate the boat under sail? Do you have the skills to recognize a problem if there is one?

I can't imagine buying a boat without sailing it. I wouldn't by a car without driving it. I wouldn't buy a guitar without playing it.

If I was buying a horse I would not need to ride it. I don't ride. There is little I could learn from a test ride. I would even know what to do or what to look for.

Giddyap!
If the seller of your horse refused to let you ride test it you would have reason to believe that the horse had something wrong with it.

Even if you couldn't ride but watched someone else ride you might notice if the the horse couldn't even get to a run.
Or if it did run was obviously over heated.

But yes someone who knew how to ride would probably get more out the ride test.

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post #9 of 23 Old 01-26-2014
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Re: Should I be scared??? What would you do???

For a first time buyer/new sailor I think the 'sailing' portion of a sea trial may have limited value, in that the buyer may not be able to tell if the boat sails well or not, and it's a crap shoot whether you get good sailing conditions in any case. But the opportunity to check running systems, vibration, noise, leaks, full functionality is the larger part of what a sea trial is for. Ideally your surveyor is along for the ride...

In the east where boats are routinely hauled for winter I'd think the mechanism for delayed closing should be a common practice. I'd stay away from a broker who minimizes or recommends against a sea trial on principle alone.
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post #10 of 23 Old 01-26-2014 Thread Starter
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Re: Should I be scared??? What would you do???

Just a quick update...
The Admiral has always said "go with your gut"... My gut has been turning over for the last week... Something just too unsettling ....
Maybe I was looking for "some other way" of doing things that Would make me feel better..
All your great responses tells me what is in my gut already.. I already knew.

So the update...
If we did purchase the boat (lake Ontario ) we would have had it shipped to Maine
Logic says .... Look for something closer to home...(no shipping involved) .... If nothing else .... More cash to find a "better" ( at least more expensive) boat... Or more cash for wanted/needed improvements to the boat we settle on
So we are staying home ... Looking in our own backyard
Thanks
The Admiral and I will keep you posted
Bill
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