1. Dufour 27 2. How do you know how much a boat is worth? - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 07-23-2009
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Cool 1. Dufour 27 2. How do you know how much a boat is worth?

Two questions here I thought I would put them together. They are the same thing really.

I'm gearing up to buy a 27 footer and there is not the BIGgest selection here, and the prices seem all over the place. How do I know what a boat is worth? I'd like to get a good deal in this buyer's market, and have something that I can resell at the end as I intend to continue to step up to a solid 33-35 ft. bluewater, but where do I start?

For instance there were recently 3 westerly 26's for sale, and they were priced all over the place, so I looked on yachtworld, and there too they were anywhere from a couple thousand to in the 20's, but the boats in the 20's didn't look any better than the ones in the teens.

Same with Cal 20's, I'm not looking for a Cal 20, I already had one, but they are asking 2000-4500 for boats that look the same.

Also, so far I like this dufour best. Good for coastal cruising with some bluewater potential, and it's not too expensive, asking 12k, but I would offer less. What do you think of this boat from what you can see of the pictures and from any previous dufour information you have. Thanks for the help. Here's a link to the photo's of the dufour.

Flickr: northoceanbeach's Photostream
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  #2  
Old 07-23-2009
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question

To sum it up you asked;
What is a boat worth and where do I start in order to buy it for resale??
Am I correct in interpreting what you wrote?

Needless to say 'This is my opinion:' and others will most certainly disagree, I am not infallible let's discuss it.

Boats are priced all over the place based primarily upon their owner's belief in what the boat is worth and somewhat on the general condition of the boat. They are just fiberglass, wood, steel and canvas.

It took me over one year to buy after I decided exactly which boat I wanted; I knew footage, brand, year range in mind and I knew exactly how much I was willing to pay and why. I looked at 20+ boats made only 3 separate offers before I bought my current boat. Toward the end of this process I could decide in 5 minutes if I wanted to inspect this boat or if I had just wasted my time driving over to look at it. I do not like to negotiate and I told them this when I made my offer, I was counter offered every time by the seller anyway. My first offer / counter offer taught me a lot about what I knew and what I thought I knew. When I actually bought I knew about what the market values were I knew about how long these boats stayed on the market, what sold them quickly and what did not sell them.


I have seen nice advertisements for Smelly rusty JUNK with original 20 year old equipment priced the highest on the market with the arrogantly delusional owner expressing the belief 'it's worth every penny'. Likewise, I have seen nice boats in good condition where the owner just wants to get rid of it quickly, priced at the bottom of the market. You have to look at a lot of boats to distinguish between these two extremes.

Nobody will say this way but, as the buyer YOU set the price. Do some serious research, if a survey costs 10% what are you willing to pay yourself to save an unnecessary survey? Read more than one book on boat buying, inspecting, repair, sailing and everything on the internet concerning your specific boat choice. There are numerous good boat buying checklists available online for free. This is after you make a decision on which boat to buy. Then with this knowledge make an offer based upon what you think this boat is worth and explain the reasons why to the seller. My last boat I bought for asking price, it was a fair asking price, I considered it way undervalued, he was making an emotional sell just to get rid of the boat which had been on the market 3 days. I didn't have to steal it from him to get a fair price. I felt then and still feel I could double my money in one week when I decide to sell it.

I donít subscribe to the survey prior to the offer method, if I have any doubts I walk away. Trust your instinct and do your homework. Then again I'm not financing a 750k 20 meter yacht. FYI, I have bought 3 sail boats in the past 9 years and have made money every time; first boat returned 300% second boat returned 100% and I am keeping my last purchase for a while, but I plan on returning 150-200% on it. Brokers/ dealers make a living this way, figure out what they do and just do as they do.
Surveys are not all bad insurance requires them, loans require them. My point is don't rely upon a surveyor to decide if the boat is in decent shape or right for you. If you are self educated an expensive survey should tell you nothing you did not already know. If you are self educated you will be surprised what a professional surveyor tells you they did not inspect that you did.
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Old 07-24-2009
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A boat is worth whatever someone will PAY FOR IT.

You'll find many old threads here and elsewhere that discuss how to find out the general market values that reasonable buyers and sellers claim boats are actually selling for, but that doesn't change what they are worth.
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Old 07-24-2009
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My advice to you would be to continue looking at lots of boats. In a while, after seeing what is on the market and what people are asking for them, you'll get a rough idea of what things are worth.

When you find the right boat you will feel a bit of a twinge in your midsection - halfway between the first time you saw a cheerleader's skirt fly up and the last time you wet your pants.

If you have more money than the seller is asking you will go through the motions of negotiating but won't waste much time trying to beat the price down. You'll buy the boat and then go out and spend everything you have left on little presents for her.

If you have less money than the seller is asking you will negotiate like crazy, you will remortgage your house and send your spouse out to work the nearest corner for extra cash. When you finally have enough money you will buy the boat and then you will find more money from somewhere to go out and buy little presents for her.


Good Luck !
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Old 07-24-2009
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Another way to help you with your calculations is to figure out the costs you will incur the first few years you own the boat.
For example if Boat A costs 5,000
Needs new:
Sails, Standing rigging, running Rigging,Cushions, Headliner, ground tackle, water tank and Outboard.

If Boat B had all the above in excellent condition plus an inboard diesel in good condition and a dinghy plus good dock lines and extra life vests etc but cost 15,000 you would have to talk the owner of boat A into giving you several thousand dollars to take his boat off his hands to even up the value. Not likely.

Many boats have negative value compared to other boats.

It is the easiest thing in the world to buy a boat that is a good deal at 20,000 and after 5 years have a boat worth at best 5,000. All you have to do is do nothing.
As a buyer you usually want to avoid the boats that have been let go and find a boat that has been kept up.

In short do your own survey and add up the repair/upgrade bills you are facing and add them to the price of the boat. I have found that when I adjust for condition the boat prices make a lot more sense.
Of course the exception is the low price boat in great shape. And thats the one you buy of course.

Last edited by davidpm; 07-25-2009 at 11:21 AM.
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