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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Boat Review and Purchase Forum
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  #11  
Old 08-28-2007
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NrEast, my understanding is that there is no PST in Quebec on used boats. Here's a link for some boats for sale in the Ottawa area and there is no GST on boats bought privately in canada. http://www.nsc.ca/classifieds/classifieds.htm
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  #12  
Old 08-28-2007
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CMonkey, that loophole may soon be closed if the GST police a reading these posts.
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  #13  
Old 08-28-2007
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In that size range I would imagine that a fair number of boats would have a trailer already. I would certainly look for one of those.

I will be buying a somewhat larger boat in the US 40 +/- and will be bringing it back by boat because the shipping charge is quite high.
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  #14  
Old 08-29-2007
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Killarney, if you register your boat in Alberta or Quebec you can avoid PST. Register the boat before you bring it back to Canada. Then you will only have to pay GST.
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  #15  
Old 08-29-2007
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ebs
Thanks for that idea
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  #16  
Old 08-29-2007
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Killar, register the boat before you bring it into Canada. You only pay GST at the border.
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  #17  
Old 08-29-2007
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As others have said, importing is painless. If you import it yourself the customs people are required to help you fill out the form properly. Show them the bill of sale, pay the sales tax and you even get your registration number for the bow right on the spot. As I recall, "tonnage" is the only difficult blank to fill in.

Trailers can be trickier because they are road vehicles and must meet the Transport Canada requirements for lighting, tires, axles, etc. A commercially built trailer in good shape should be OK, but they might (or might not) give you grief over a homebuilt U.S. trailer coming into Canada.

Commercial boat haulers can sometimes give you very good prices, especially if you're flexible on time. As fall approaches, trucks are full going south, but empty coming north. Also, they can load two smaller boats on a trailer. If you can tag along on one of these loads, you can save a lot. (A few years ago I got a quote from Andrews Trucking for a 26' boat of $2200 at my convenience, or for $650 at theirs. The did a great job for me. Highly recommended.)

By the way, if you cross paths with DRD Motorsports for trucking, run as fast as you can. I went through a boat transport broker last year for a 34' boat from Maryland to Ontario who assigned my load to DRD. DRD never bothered to called me. When I finally called to ask what was happening, I was told the truck was to pick up my boat the following morning, and if I didn't wire transfer the full fee that afternoon, my boat wouldn't be picked up. (The contract with the broker said COD payment. DRD said he didn't care what the contract said, but did say he didn't trust his driver with a cash payment.) Then it turned out DRD didn't have the first clue about crossing the border and dealing with customs. He couldn't tell me when the truck would reach the border so I couldn't plan on meeting the driver and import it myself. I hired Garden City Customs Brokers (a truly class company, by the way). When I relayed their instructions to DRD, DRD said their instructions were wrong. The Garden City broker had me give her cell number to DRD and she straightened him out herself. Every time I talked to DRD I was told "if you hold my truck up, I'm going to charge you more." Finally when the driver arrived he wouldn't release the boat until I paid another $15 cash. DRD's bank charged him a $15 fee for the wire transfer he demanded from me, so he wouldn't release my boat until I paid this, too.

I'll tell you, happiness is seeing a DRD Motorsports truck driving away...

That advice about using a broker to avoid paying GST sounds pretty dodgy to me. Garden City Brokers charged me about $60 for their work, including applying for an importer number for me. If a broker is charging $175 for the same work and telling customers they don't have to pay GST for a boat for personal use, I think I'd look for someone else. Sure, the broker says you have a 50/50 chance of having to pay the GST if caught. But if you get charged with tax evasion and fined, will he put into writing that he will pay the fine and your legal bills? Assuming, of course, that he's still around.

Anyway, good luck on your boat hunting!

Tim
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  #18  
Old 08-29-2007
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They will also nail you with duty. You may want to consider getting a Custom broker to help you with this process, they use a GST loop hole to save you some cash.
No you can't...

Quote:
Northeaster - the perk of using a Broker is that he will issue you a GST number, so you are now in fact a company. Companies are GST exempt, so you save that tax. On an expensive boat, it's worth the Brokerage fee. There is however a small chance that the government flags your purchase and looks into it, and you end up having to pay GST, but I have yet heard of it happening.
The broker cannot issue you a GST number. The broker cannot apply for a GST number on your behalf, it is issued by the government. Somewhere along the way, one of the documents that you signed was an apllication for a GST number, that had your address on it. OR the broker told you that they were doing it and have not done so - either way - it's illegal...

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Northeaster - the broker I used in Toronto charged me $175 and provided me with a GST number. He told me I was taking a 50/50 change on paying the GST if my purchased was flagged. It never got flagged, so I was okay. Funny how this loop hole still exists. It's not like the government on being okay to lose money.
They're not - and they have seven years to get to you - in the meantime interest is piling up.

Last edited by Sailormann; 08-29-2007 at 09:36 PM.
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  #19  
Old 08-29-2007
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If you are buying a boat and importing it into Canada you are required to pay : GST, PST, and perhaps Duty on boats that were not manufactured in the US

In order to import the boat you need a bill of sale, and if you got a good deal on the boat it is highly advisable that you carry supporting documentation to prove that you have not undervalued the boat on the bill of sale.

When you get to the border, you will be required to fill out some forms and pay GST and PST or HST if you live in one of the provinces that the Federal Government collects sales tax on behalf of. If not, then you are responsible for remitting the PST yourself.

If you have a boat that has an engine larger than 9.9 horsepower, you are required to either register it (Federal) or license it (Provincial). Both of these actions result in a Federal record of your boat being established, and are handled by Service Canada now. This used to be done by Canada Customs but that is no longer the case.

As far as a trailer goes, it must be declared and imported seperately from the boat, and applicable taxes and duty (if it was not made in a NAFTA country) must be paid. It must meet Transport Canada requirements which are posted on their website.

The trailer must be licensed when you get to your home province. In order to do this you will need to prove that you have paid PST, or it will be charged again at the time of licensing.

While it may be possible to avoid paying PST somehow, sooner or later you will pay GST, and any interest and penalties that have accrued. Don't assume that because you use a broker who does something unethical, that you will be able to claim ignorance at a later date when you are caught.

From a legal standpoint, the broker is acting on your behalf and following your instructions, and any contravention of regulations was done by them under your direction. (The case books are full of people who have tried to argue this to no avail)

You also need to consider what will happen if you should decide to sell your boat, as the new owner will have to license or register it and will need your documentation in order to do so....

So the easiest and safest thing is just to do what you're supposed to and get it over with, rather than spend the rest of your time worrying about when you're going to get a demand letter in the mail.
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  #20  
Old 11-15-2008
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i bought a canadian made boat. only gst/pst for me when I brought it back across the border. only took 10 mins to clear customs. made sure I had all my ducks in a row though. If you buy it on an american trailer, get separate bills of sale for boat and trailer. I had one custom made for the boat and brought it down with me to pick it up. if you are overwidth (wider than 8.5ft) you will need permits from each state/province you travel through.
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