Make offer or run away? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 57 Old 09-20-2007 Thread Starter
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Question Make offer or run away?

All,

I am looking to the forum for advice....

In my current search for a boat I have come across a boat that has been on the hard for the past 2+ years. The boat is a mid 1980s Pearson, and the broker/owner is asking ~70K. This is in line with the asking price for similar boats.

Other boats, however, are in the water, and surveyable/sailable. This boat has had the keel stepped mast, the dodger, and all rigging removed and stowed. I was not able to see the sails, but the mast looks OK, and there is a relatively new rollerfurler stowed on top of the boat. The owner has it parked in his driveway, and has an extension cord run to his garage to keep the batteries charged. The fuel guage reads 1/4 (full of what?), the Batteries are 4 + years old, and the electronics are ancient (oldest Garmin GPS I've ever seen, a handheld VHF (that looks like a brick-phone), non-functional radar, and Loran). Otherwise the hull looks sound, and the interior is relatively clean. It has a Yanmar 30Hp that looks a somewhat rusty, but OK. I didn't check the Oil or the coolant when I looked at it, butI doubt that they would tell me anything about the boat... The boat has refrigeration, and an old vertical windlass, neither of which I want (I would like a horizontal windlass). Judging by the overall condition of the boat, I would guess that everything was OK when the boat was pulled from the water and put away.

I am sure that another factor is that the owner's house has a For Sale sign in front of it, although the broker didn't seem to know anything about that....

The broker's suggestion is that any offer include an escrow for things that a surveyor can't inspect - like the engine (which has been sitting for at least 2 years), electrics, and the holding tanks. It's nice to know that he's looking out for me. I might as well put an escrow reserve on the hull.

Part of me wants to make an offer on the boat (for like 1/2 the asking price) and tell them to forget the survey / escrow. Another part of me says to run away and keep shoppin'.

Any thoughts?

Ed
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post #2 of 57 Old 09-20-2007
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My $0.02: This is a project boat. If you are interested in a project boat, then go ahead and pitch a low-ball offer. If you want to go sailing or cruising in the forseeable future, keep shopping.

As far as electronics, you might as well consider it as a boat with no electronics.

Whatever is in the fuel tank should be discarded and the tank thoroughly cleaned. Is it possible to clean this tank? What access does it have?

There are a thousand unknowns. I personally would not want to purchase a boat that I had not sea-trialed.

Good luck (and good shopping.)
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post #3 of 57 Old 09-20-2007
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wow!

That's allot of moola! You didn't say what size Pearson it is for that price, hope it's over 35 ft! On the other hand you could lowball the bid and walk.. If you fall in love with a boat your emotions will be on your shoulder when you try to negotiate (been there done that) There are thousands of boats out there! Buyers market! If a Broker really wants to make the sale they should be somewhat willing to make you happy. It's not like people are standing in line to buy said boat! When out of the water you can at least seel the hull below the water line. A boat in the water has to be pulled of course. (and they hate that!) You can inssist on many many things if you really want this Pearson. I don't think I would buy anything without a survey either. But of course no one wants to pay then find out they shouldn't buy it. So it's best to be really educated about boats when shopping. take tools. lights, have the engine run off garden hose if you have to. But insist. Personally I love Pearsons even though I have an Oday. I can't help but wonder if I will somday have a Pearson 35CB if I decide to live aboard.
Good luck!

Denise, Bristol PA, Oday 30. On Tidal Delaware River, Anchor Yacht Club.
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My last project!
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My boat is sold!
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post #4 of 57 Old 09-20-2007
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I agree with the Conchcruzer. Basically, you would be taking on all the hassle and risk because the owner is not willing to put the boat into full commission and properly show it for sale in the water. Commissioning a boat in that condition will be a major undertaking, not even counting all the unknowns. And when you're spending that kind of money, a test-sail prior to consummating the deal is a must.
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post #5 of 57 Old 09-20-2007
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I say ask $35k or walk away. just my .02

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post #6 of 57 Old 09-20-2007
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I say keep looking. Lots of boats for sale, no reason to buy anything you have the slightest doubts about.


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post #7 of 57 Old 09-20-2007
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I agree with the comment above, walk away! I would never buy a boat without a survey and even at $35k the cost of repairs could eat you up.
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post #8 of 57 Old 09-20-2007
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The good news is that electronics are cheap now. The bad news is that if the owner had this boat since early 80's he/she will think a Loran is worth $6000

I agree - bid low and take it for project or walk away. Might be a big project - but hey - I took day off to rip out a door and frame in house and replace with studs & drywall - so I am crazy anyway
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post #9 of 57 Old 09-20-2007
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Since you asked,

dump the broker. call the 'house for sale' number ask to come by to look at the boat personally. Show up with 15,000 in cash and guarantee to move the boat within the next 24 hours.

Be careful with this advise becasue I bet he /she takes it.

if the owner starts saying the boat is worth 100k bla bla just walk away. knowing there is no way your going to come to an agreement. there are many more boats out there...

dont let emotions play a part in this decision, you are not robbing him. you are providing a service to him by removing this boat. remember he will have to pay to have this boat moved and stored, after all No one will buy his house with a 'boat on blocks' parked in the front yard.
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post #10 of 57 Old 09-20-2007
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You don't want a boat project (unless you do). Trust me.

The classic line to the question 'I bet if I offered him xxx for that piece of crap he'd take it.' is... 'ya, but then it you'd have it.'


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