"Buyer's Market" - any data to back it up? - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 87 Old 09-30-2008 Thread Starter
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"Buyer's Market" - any data to back it up?

It is "common knowledge" that it is now a buyer's market for new and used boats. It is often repeated here, as well as the popular press.

Does anybody have any data to back it up - plots of final sale prices, days on the market etc. Trying to get my hands around how much I might want to offer if I come across the right boat. Like anyone I don't want to pay too much now, especially if selling prices are in a free fall - better to wait (unless it is the perfect boat).

As a single data point, A Freedom 28 for sale in RI was appraised at $27 to $30K in May of 2008 as part of a survey the source being the BUC value book. I did an appraisal via BUC online today, value listed as $23.7 to $26.3K for average condition. NADA $22.5 to $25.3K, BoatUS $22.3K.

Seller is asking $29.5K. I think they are a bit out of line, while appearing to be in fine shape, she needs new sails and a new dodger and doesn't have any upgrades to speak of.
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post #2 of 87 Old 09-30-2008
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It is the rare seller that doesn't ask more than what book value is. While economic conditions can make sale prices lower, it is more often a case of how bad the seller wants to make the sale that determines price. That is my experience, other's may have different ones.

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post #3 of 87 Old 09-30-2008
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You dont need a spread sheet to get the facts..walk into any brokerage and look at their board ..it will have "Priced Reduced" on almost every listing..
Any down turn in the economy will be a buyers market..with some associated "distress" sales along with it.

There is another thread of a guy looking to buy a J105 and he is wrestling with this same issue of boat value for the dollar in this market.

But with any luxury item and thats what boats are... allot of thoes people (as Chuck mentioned in that thread) can sit out low ball offers.

I have a 30' sea ray for sale at 7K under appraisal..It can sit and collect dust before I'll go to much lower. And no... no one has even made an offer on it in 6 months.

Yes its a buyers market but only a "killer of a deal market" from the right seller.
And that happens all the time Just more when people start losing their jobs and such.

So in my sea ray example lowering the price a little will do little good..lowering it substantially more will only attract "The killer of a deal mentality buyer" I can wait thank you very much...

Last edited by Stillraining; 09-30-2008 at 03:52 PM.
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post #4 of 87 Old 09-30-2008
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I just received a notification on a Sabre 30 yesterday from my broker at 8:15AM. It sold to someone else less than one hour after being listed for the full asking price; which I learned when I said "I want to see it!" Sounds "seller's market" to me on that one. ;-)

With homes it's location, location, location. With used boats it's condition, condition, condition.

Brokers have sources for sell price vs listing price. Most everything "routine" seems to be dropping 10% in the last six months. With the latest news, God knows? Is your money safer in a boat or the bank?

I'm planning on still buying a boat.

Those that need large loans? THAT will crimp the buyers and could reduce new boat sales - bringing UP the used boat market.

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post #5 of 87 Old 09-30-2008
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There is certainly no shortage of selection out there right now and given the current financial climate you may get lucky. The current financial storm will pass as has happened before and then the market will improve.
There are many baby boomers reaching retirement age these days and they may be looking for a luxury toy such as a boat instead of a motorhome and they will eventually soak up the surplus boats and then die and the surplus will be for sale again.
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post #6 of 87 Old 09-30-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Delirious View Post
I just received a notification on a Sabre 30 yesterday from my broker at 8:15AM. It sold to someone else less than one hour after being listed for the full asking price; which I learned when I said "I want to see it!" Sounds "seller's market" to me on that one. ;-)
I smell a set-up or pre-sale there.
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Those that need large loans? THAT will crimp the buyers and could reduce new boat sales - bringing UP the used boat market.
The new boat market is already tiny compared to the used boat market, so I'm somewhat skeptical that a shift from new to used will be more than a drop in the proverbial bucket.

I've heard a prediction that powerboaters will be moving to sailboats in a big way because of fuel costs (that 30' Sea Ray above in this thread costs something like $500 to fill the tank, no?) and that this will result in a surge in sailboat prices. I'm skeptical about that too -- for many owning a boat isn't about actually traveling across the water, and my thought is that this is substantially the case with powerboaters and their penile stand-ins, so the ones who aren't so rich that they can ignore fuel prices will either let their boats sit idle even more than they usually do, or sell them and get out of boating altogether.
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post #7 of 87 Old 09-30-2008
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Originally Posted by anthony11 View Post
I've heard a prediction that powerboaters will be moving to sailboats in a big way because of fuel costs
Sounds great, Can you help me convince my wife to switch? lol.

Personally I think the sitting idle or getting out of boating all together is probably more likely. Most powerboaters I know wouldn't be interested in learning to sail. I think they'd probably end up getting out of boating.


Except of course for the 1000HP 190decibel penises running up and down the lake.

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post #8 of 87 Old 10-01-2008
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I can tell you that there are at least a dozen boats with the same asking price listed on Yachtworld from when I saw them over 1 year ago. Some that I expressed interest in if the price were more in line with book values.

Clearly, if you really want to sell a boat in this environment it better be a rare gem, or you best lower your expectations.

Yesterday, I heard a news article that home values have slipped 16%. Not sure if that is a national average but it has to indicate which way boat prices have moved. On a personal note I calculated my life savings has decreased 23% since June when I bought my boat. That probably would have taken me out of the markert if it had happened before I signed on the dotted line. No doubt there are many feeling the same thing as the market takes away years of gains.

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post #9 of 87 Old 10-01-2008
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I have been looking at boats lately and the brokers have said there are really two different markets - People who are selling generic production boats are more often inexperienced sailors than are those selling higher end boats - You MIGHT find a good deal on one of those generic boats but it is more a case of prices not rising at all and more sellers willing to negotiate. The higher end boats were more often bought by people who knew exactly what they were doing, are people who are actually sailing their boats all the time and are willing to wait for the right buyer. So that end of the market tends more just to freeze up for a while.

I know I know. The brokers are trying to tell me to buy the boat I am looking at for what the sellers want - But as a point of reference, I tried to look at a Caliber last week that was under contract within two weeks of listing. It was in good shape and well equipped - and it sold for about 10% under asking.
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post #10 of 87 Old 10-01-2008
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According to my broker a lot of recent sales are to overseas owners whose economies are still doing well and where the exchange rates to the dollar are beneficial. I am both selling and looking and it certainly is a buyer's market. I've told my broker to keep my asking price in line with the others (secure in the knowledge that my boat is better shape than most and if a real buyer should come along it will sell before the others) and the brokerage has suggested I drop my price twice in the past months in order to remain competitively priced. On the buying side, I've seen some even larger drops in asking prices than I have had to do; and a recent preponderance of "serious seller", "must sell", "dropped price due to lifestyle changes", etc. quotes hinting at sellers really needing to get rid of their expensive toys that were bought in good times with heavy loans. The boats that I am looking at are >45 feet and thus in higher price ranges and that might be a completely different market from the ~30 footers.


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