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Old 07-15-2009
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Survey etiquette

This may have been covered somewhere, but I didn't stumble across it doing a search.
What is the correct etiquette for getting a survey done when selling a boat? I know that the buyer has to pay the surveyor, but what am I, the seller, generally responsible for? The boat is in the water. Am I going to be expected to sail it a couple of hours somewhere so that it can be hauled? Who pays for the hauling? For putting it back in the water? I recognize that anything can be negotiated, but I want to try to understand what a potential buyer might be expecting.
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Old 07-15-2009
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The Catch All Answer is......

depends.

I would say most times it is the responsibility of the buyer to pay for the haul/splash as well as the survey. As far as getting the boat to a place for hauling, well that is a different can of worms. I would say most of the time, the boat is located near a yard that can lift the boat out of the water, so you can either arrange for the broker to bring it over (if they are there and you trust them), you can bring it over before the survey and leave it at the dock, or do it during the survey yourself.

If you're not local to a lift facility or the buyer wants you to bring it to him/her, then I would charge them a flat rate 1) either hire a captain to do it, or 2) do it yourself. The rate is something that I can not help you with.

When I bought my boat, the PO wasn't there, the boat was in the water, and I had it hauled. The broker and I brought it the 300 yards from the mooring to the yard dock/lift and met the surveyor. When we were done, we left it at the dock.

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The survey I did was at the sellers yard. It was already ashore and blocked. I paid for the survey. The yard said it had already been paid for the return trip launch and I would not have to pay again unless I did not buy and it had to be reblocked. Everything passed and the yard gave me till the end of the month to move it.
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Old 07-15-2009
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I've just had a survey carried out on a boat I'm buying in San Francisco.
I hired the surveyor over the internet, and paid in advance for what turned out to be a professionally conducted survey, and for the haul-out fees.

The seller sailed it to the haul-out location, and was good enough to sail it for a few minutes with the surveyor to check all the basic systems.

The whole process was smooth and easy thanks to a co-operative seller, and a professional surveyor.

I couldn't attend as I'm a few thousand miles away on another continent, but I'm very satisfied with the result, and am going ahead with the deal for my dream boat!
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Old 07-15-2009
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The boat we bought was in the water at the owner's marina. We chose and paid for the surveyor and paid to haul/powerwash/splash the boat for the hull inspection. The broker operated the boat during the sea trial.
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Old 07-15-2009
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On our purchase, the broker paid for the haul out. I think there might have been some confusion during negotiations, but the haul was cheap in their area compared to others I've seen. The PO sailed the boat to a marina (about four miles from home port) that does Saturday haul outs. We sailed back with the PO and surveyor. This may not be the norm, but the PO was able to answer some questions we had during the sea trials. Everything was very casual and the seller, although motivated, was very patient.
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Old 07-15-2009
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I think this is a tricky issue. In my case I paid for the haul out and the surveyor, it worked out ok as it was the boat I bought and I would have needed to haul it out anyway.
What happens though if your a buyer with a short list of two or maybe 3 boats and the inspection on them is the clincher, all need hauling.
Fair enough you'd pay for each survey but what about haul out costs on the boats you don't buy?
With my boat I negotiated a 5k reduction in price which offset the haul out and inspection but I've concluded that boat buying is a tricky business.
If I were a seller then I'd have the boat on the hard prior to advertising, then buyers can pay for the surveyors and it would not affect me.

Mychael
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Generally the buyer pays all fees associated with the survey, incl. haul-out. As to whom gets the boat to the haul-out location, let me put it this way: Are you going to trust somebody else, likely somebody you don't know, with a boat you still own?

When our boat's survey date came up the seller was unable to make it. He sent his son and a crew member to get the boat over to the haul-out.

Jim
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Old 07-16-2009
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Having never sold a boat, and only bought one..... My experience has been the same as others here.

I paid for the surveyor and the haul out, I used the slipway that the PO had used several times (they knew the boat and knew exactly what to do, so less chance of the boat being damaged during slipping)

My boat had been anti-fouled 6 months before I purchased so no wash down was done.

PO motored the boat up the river about 1-2Km to slip.

As a buyer I had no idea what was the norm, I asked the surveyor and followed his advice and recommendations. All went well for me and I am happy with the boat.

When it came time for payment, I was lucky that the PO banked at the same bank, we walked up to the teller, she withdrew the money from my account and deposited it to his there and then. That mad it easy for both of us, not cheque fees and clearing time or risk of bouncing. we were both happy with that arrangement.

I have always taken the approach in life that try to be reasonable with the other party (buyer or seller) if they are not prepared to be reasonable then save yourself the headache and move on. Buyers who aren't being reasonable are likely to be trouble after the sale has competed, claiming all sorts of ridiculous things, likewise sellers that are unreasonable are likely to try and rip you off and remove things that were supposed to be included in the sale. Life's too short for this unnecessary stress.

Hope all goes well for you and that you find a reasonable and genuine buyer.

Dave.
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Old 07-17-2009
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Thanks

Thanks for all the responses. Everyone seems to be saying pretty much the same thing: the buyer pays all survey related expenses. My boat is approximately two hours from the nearest hauling facility, and I will be happy to take it there myself. (That's why I own a boat.) As for hauling it before advertising it, as one poster suggested, that could go either way. I'm going to leave mine in the water until someone is interested enough to haul and survey. That way I can take them out, if it looks as though they are interested enough, and I can use it myself.
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