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  #1  
Old 10-31-2008
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Smile Documentation & Registration procedure

I am about to realize a dream come true by purchasing the liveaboard sailboat that I have wanted since I first saw it back in 1987. It is a Freedom 33 Cat Ketch that I saw for sale 30+ years ago when she was quite new, but I was unable to swing the finances then. Several years ago, while I was working at a small Marina in Greenport, NY(about 50 miles from where I first layed eyes on her) This very same boat came sailing in, as a new slip holder at this Marina, skippered by its new owner, who had just purchased it from the original owner who had wound up keeping the boat all those years. I was hired by the new owners to maintain and upgrade the boat since then. Well as it turns out, she went up for sale this summer and the owners have worked out a plan for me to purchase her! I expect to be moving aboard Dec.1. My question is what is the proper procedure for turning the vessel over to me? Specifically, I need to know ; Do I get the boat Documented first and then when that is done register it with the state of NY? Or Do I first register it then document it? I am wondering because I need to know if I can put off paying the sales tax , which would become payable I understand at the time of registration, until after I get the documentation taken care of. Funds being stretched to the max for this transaction, it would be easier for me financially if I had a bit of breathing room. The vessel is currently a documented vessel and registered in NY by the current owners. They will be holding a lien on the vessel, as they are going to be financing it for me. I also will need to obtain documentaion of insurance coverage for the value of the vessel, (about $40,000.00) Which I believe is a fair price considering the excellent condition of the vessel and the many upgrades and excellent maintenance. The vessel has been surveyed by myself and another independent surveyor so I am very well aware of her condition. Thanks for any help and info you can provide as I have alot to do in a very short time. Rick
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Old 10-31-2008
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Midnight-

If you're planning on going cruising with the boat, get it USCG documented. Some states don't require you to pay registration fees if the boat is documented, others not so kind... as for the sales tax...gonna have to pay that in either case.

If the owners are financing the sale to you, and will be lienholders, they'll want the boat USCG documented anyways. BTW, documentation can take up to three months... depending on how backlogged they are.
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Old 10-31-2008
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Move to New Hampshire. Buy the boat. Document it. Move back to New York and never mention the first three steps. If anyone asks you are 'just visiting' i.e. a transient

Seriously? I haven't had the pleasure of dealing with sales tax, registration, AND documentation. As far as documentation goes no lien holder will be listed. And make sure the documentation is CURRENT. It can be a PITA to get it reinstated, and quite expensive. It cost me several hundred to get my documentation reinstated, and I did all of the work myself. If you keep the NY registration (which sounds like it is probably required) you will have to register and pay sales tax within a given time frame. There are legal implications, possibly fines if you don't.

Depending on what type of insurance you want to carry you will probably need a survey conducted by an accredited (SAMS, MARS) surveyor that has fair market and replacement value. The survey may also contain items that must be fixed in order for the vessel to be insured, or insured for certain activities. Seems no matter how 'bristol' she is something will have to be fixed if you want full coverage.

Goodluck and enjoy the new boat. I hope you are not cutting it too close. I was in a similar situation before I bought my Rawson looking at a boat that was going to stretch me financially. I was ready to sign papers when common sense told me to walk away. Turns out the guy that bought it (at asking price) discovered severe hull delamination only a few months later that cost well over $10k, and took 4 months in the yard to fix. I will never forget that little twist of fate.
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Old 10-31-2008
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Sailboy-

What you're advocating is simple tax evasion... not a really good idea. Most of the states get a list of documented boats from the USCG for purposes of tracking people trying to do just that.
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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you will need survey for insurance, get one

most states will list their time frame for visiting boats before the need to register. since yours in already registered, i suspect you may be liable for tax right away. A call to the state will tell you how much time you have, I'll guess 30 days from purchase.
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There are a lot of sales and use tax treads on the board, I'll list a few below.

As a NY resident, you owe the sales tax at the time you purchase the boat, if you don't pay it promptly you run the risk of interest and penalties being applied when you do. Do not fall for any schemes about dogging the tax - if you are going to have the boat in NY sooner or later, pay the tax. (In the 90's while living in Minnesota, I grudgingly paid Mass. use tax on a R19 I (then a Mass resident) had bought in Maine five years before and no longer owned, the stae had no evidence I ever brought the boat to Mass, they insisted I provide evidence that i had not.....).

If the boat is documented, you probably don't end up with a NY registration (numbers on the bow) you jus tneed to go through the tax paying part of the process.

Living Aboard in NY 2...

http://www.sailnet.com/forums/buying...y-not-pay.html

http://www.sailnet.com/forums/buying...tax-right.html

http://www.sailnet.com/forums/buying...pay-taxes.html
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Old 10-31-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Sailboy-

What you're advocating is simple tax evasion... not a really good idea. Most of the states get a list of documented boats from the USCG for purposes of tracking people trying to do just that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by sailboy21
If you keep the NY registration (which sounds like it is probably required) you will have to register and pay sales tax within a given time frame. There are legal implications, possibly fines if you don't.
I am?? Ooops... Actually if one were to move to another, less communist, state that would simply be a 'move,' a change of residency. What they do in another state is none of the last state's bee's wax. They might moan and groan, like California does about the 'Esenada Yacht Club' but there really isn't anything illegal about it. How do you think corporations do it? Thats all we are.. little mini corporations. They make the rules, but it is up to us to understand the rules. If there is a legal way to avoid paying a tax I am all for it!
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Sailboy-

If you're advocating a paper move to a state for the sole purpose of buying the boat and then a paper move back to the state of use... yes, that is tax evasion.
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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Old 10-31-2008
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Obviously, judging from the responces I am getting to my post, I was not clear in my intentions, needs or questions. Let me try again.
First, to make this clear, I am not at all trying or desireing to avoid the NY sales tax. My situation is this:
I work as a shipwright via a small buisness I have repairing, restoring, maintaining and building (on occasion) boats (almost all sailboats). I work out of a small Marina. The boat I am buying has been berthed at this Marina for the past 4 years and the owner became a customer of mine. I have maintained, and done many upgrades to this boat over this time and the boat is in excellent shape. I have surveyed the boat myself, AND have also had it surveyed by an independent, professional surveyor, so I know the boats condition thoroughly, inside and out. Presently, I live in a house I rent, which costs me over $2,000.00/month. For those of you who are concernred that I might be stretching myself out to thin, I plan to move out of this house and move aboard the boat and live on it at the Marina where it is berthed and where I work out of. This will cost me a lot less than I currently am spending. (BTW, I live alone, with just my dog as family)So..living aboard is a better finacial situation for me. More importantly to me is that I love living aboard and that has always been my dream. I do currently own a 29ft Contest, which I lived on for 3 years. Because it was in need of major work and upgrades to make it more liveable, I pulled it out of the water several years ago to give it a major re-fit and upgrades. I have rented the house during this time. I intened to move back aboard this boat when I finnished it (it is about 90% completed) but I aso have desired somthing larger because 29 feet is a bit tight for a liveaboard. I just never had the opportunity to find and buy somthing more suitable until now. My plan is to move out of this house and abord the new boat on Dec. 1, where I will live aboard her at her current slip ,at the Marina I work out of. I can then stop paying my landlords mortgage and pay for somthing I own!
My question is , in order to transfer the boat over to me, do I first take care of the documentation and then get it registered, when I then pay the NY sales tax..or.. do I have to get it registered first,pay the sales tax and then go about transfering the documentation ? BTW, the boat is currently Documented and registered in NY. I hope I can do the documentation first , which should take a bit of time, and then get it registered and pay the tax. This would give a bit of time ,even a monthwould help, before I have to come up with the sales tax money. Otherwisae I have to come up with the boat downpayment and the sales tax all at once which is going to be tough for me to do. AT any rate, I do need to find out the proper procedure for transacting the sale and transfer of this boat. Doc. first and then reg.+ tax or reg.+ tax, then doc.? Thanks for all your responces and help...they are appreciated. Rick
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Old 10-31-2008
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Midnight...congrats on the "new" boat! I'm afraid that there is no way around paying NYS tax if the boat will be kept there. They are most aggressive and will catch up with you and make it more painful when they do.
You will need a formal survey for insurance but since the financing is private, your lenders may not require documentation as banks will. Simple NYState registration may suffice. On the other hand, as the Dawg says, you may need documentation to visit other countries in the future and since the boat is already documented, it is pretty simple and relatively cheap to simply re-document under your name with the loan holders shown as leinholders on the docuentation.

EDIT...oops..just saw your latest post. Just get a us coast guard bill of sale and apply for re-documentation under your name with the former owners listed as leinholders. While that is all pending...you will need to present the same bill of sale to NYS to register the boat AND to pay your sales tax.
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