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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Boat Review and Purchase Forum
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  #1  
Old 01-13-2008
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PalmettoSailor will become famous soon enough
Broker question.

Ok, all the pieces are coming together. We sold the boat we bought on a whim 2 seasons ago as a starter just to see if we liked sailing. We decided sailing is for us and now are looking for a "step up" boat that has the features we liked from our O'day 32, plus some of the comfort and convienience stuff that boat lacked. We've done the research, set our budget and looked at tons of boats from 32-38' and have narrowed our choices down to a couple of models. Of the models we are interested in, there are a few of each on the market locally and we are close to deciding which to make an offer on first. I've looked up BUC values and gotten value estimates from BoatUS and have an idea what to offer. (That said, If anyone would like to offer their opinion on an offer strategy PM me and I'll link you to the YW ad).

My question at this point is, should I enlist a broker we deal with exclusively? On our previous purchase, we considered brokers more like "used car dealers" than the realtors they'd prefer to be compared to. Is there any advantage to having a "Buying broker" and "Selling broker" as would be likely on a real estate transaction? I'm "Ass-U-N-Me-ing" that they split the commission and I would not be expected to compensate a buyers broker out of pocket. Is that correct? There are a couple of boats on our list that the listing broker has already shown us. Is it too late to select a broker on our side on those boats?

Thanks in advance for all the Sailnet expertise. Boats are one of the biggest financial transactions most folks ever make, so it's great to have this wealth of experience to draw on.
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Old 01-13-2008
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Yes...they split the commission so the important thing to always understand is that neither is working in your interest to get you the best price or reveal everything there is to know about the boat.
Also...if you deal with the listing broker...he can compromise a bit to make the deal happen since he is making twice the commission he would otherwise make. You can tell EVERY broker about your needs and have them all interested in finding a boat for you. I can't see a buyers broker making sense unless you were geographically remote, had no time to look at a lot of boats or needed something very unique.
This is a USA centric post...since things may work quite a bit differently elsewhere!
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Old 01-13-2008
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Unless you have really specific concerns about the listing broker(s), I'd agree with Cam as to not really gaining anything by using another person.

Your SURVEYOR is working for YOU and should be able to ensure that the boat you choose is worth the pending deal. I realize this doesn't particularly help with the initial search, but these days it's easy to "see" a lot of boats yourself.

Sounds like you've done a lot of looking and you know what you want. So comparing your potential deals with other listings available on the various sites (remember there may be regional price variations) should give you peace of mind as you go ahead.

Remember that the info the dealer gives you was probably provided by the seller, who may or may not be overly forthright. Other than generic info on the model, your "buying broker" may not have any more facts.
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Old 01-13-2008
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Unless you know exactly what you want I tend to disagree with Cam and Faster. When we bought our boat we agreed to work with only one broker. He spent a good deal of time with us understanding our needs and expectations. For my part I had limited knowledge of the wide variety of boats available to us. Our broker was able to help us focus our search, suggesting some boats that I would not have otherwise considered while at the same time stearing us away from some that ultimately would not have been suitable for us. There were times that we would get caught up in the moment while looking at a boat and he would ask us questions that made me think is this really the right boat for us. Our broker may have been unique but he earned our trust and I don't think we would have gotten the same level of effort if we were just out there for every broker who had a listing.
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Old 01-13-2008
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Only one of the several brokers we've spoken to thus far was a person I'd refuse to do business with and fortunately they are not the listing agent for any of our current candidates.

That said, I have been suprised at the lack of effort on the part of these brokers. I called 3 times before successfully arranging to see one boat we were interested in and none of the brokers have made any attempt to follow up, even on the boats where there was clearly some enthusiatic interest. The listing broker for the boat that is our first candidate actually complained to us that sales were slow and was calling FSBO owners trying to get new listings. Even so, He's never tried to follow up with us dispite our having gotten fairly excited as this boat he was showing us and having asked for our contact info. Boat brokers sure aren't like car dealers in that aspect, as I had dealers calling to follow up months after I bought my last car. It actually makes me wonder what exactly they do to earn a 10% commission. I sold my boat myself, but if I listed with a broker, I would be hopping mad if I knew someone had viewed my boat enthusiatically and the broker never called to try and close a sale.
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Old 01-13-2008
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I narrowed down the brokers to the one who paid most attention to me as well as took the time to do the legwork and the research to find a boat which fit our profile and needs. If you find one as good as the person who worked for us you will not want to deal with other brokers. The surveyor is totally yours of course to protect you from unscruplulus sellers and brokers. Usually brokers with great reputations have them for a reason.

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Old 01-17-2008
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where in va?

Quote:
Originally Posted by midlifesailor View Post
Only one of the several brokers we've spoken to thus far was a person I'd refuse to do business with and fortunately they are not the listing agent for any of our current candidates.

That said, I have been suprised at the lack of effort on the part of these brokers. I called 3 times before successfully arranging to see one boat we were interested in and none of the brokers have made any attempt to follow up, even on the boats where there was clearly some enthusiatic interest. The listing broker for the boat that is our first candidate actually complained to us that sales were slow and was calling FSBO owners trying to get new listings. Even so, He's never tried to follow up with us dispite our having gotten fairly excited as this boat he was showing us and having asked for our contact info. Boat brokers sure aren't like car dealers in that aspect, as I had dealers calling to follow up months after I bought my last car. It actually makes me wonder what exactly they do to earn a 10% commission. I sold my boat myself, but if I listed with a broker, I would be hopping mad if I knew someone had viewed my boat enthusiatically and the broker never called to try and close a sale.
i feel your pain..had one (how best to call him a douche w/o incurring Cam's red pen), that was such a loser..he is in annapolis, and i hope he never leaves.
up in oxford, you will find tred-avon yachts..brett and barry starke are great guys. will find 'your boat' professionally and happily...
down irvington way..scott vail gets my vote (and also all my boat bizness)..
known him all my life..sold me a J/24, and my current sabre 30' mkIII.
ya have to look to find the good ones..but it is so worth it to have someone that understands and appreciate what you are looking for.
anyway..my $.02, and said advice is worth what you paid for it.
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