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  #11  
Old 02-11-2010
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... not to mention engaging the services of a broker/brokerage with integrity (but how do you know before something like this occurs????)
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  #12  
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I spent several months selling my old boat myself and buying a boat through a broker and learned lots about the business. We sold our boat for way less than wholesale and it was in advertised condition with a great hull.

The first thing I find shocking about the Whitby story is that the buyer got the problem solved.

From the ads, to the showing and the survey the buyer is at a disadvantage when it comes to information about any one boat.

The survey system is so full of loopholes that we for the most part ignored surveys and did not get one before our purchase. Many people count on surveys but what can they tell you that you cannot determine yourself with a little research and logic. If you need that survey to understand the boat you are at a significant disadvantage.

Many brokers only hunt for the weakened antelope separated from the herd. They gave me the creeps and I never called them back even though one of those boats made our short list and would have warranted a second viewing.

Almost all of them wanted offers to be made before we were really serious about the boat. To me that is less than ethical and is trying to make a sale happen regardless of the buyer’s intent.

The one thing that seemed clear to me was getting the deal corrected after money changed hands was going to be impossible or more expense than it was worth.

To that end we made offers bearing in mind that the items I could not measure or know the actual condition of may require R/R. We increased that offer based on emotion, in other words if I had missed something was I going to like the boat so much that I wouldn't mind fixing it.

It was that emotional part that got us over the few little rip offs we encountered with our purchase. A recent insurance survey suggests the deal was a good one from the money POV but if that was important I’d invest in something less risky.

In the end the system relies on emotion and the fact that the buyer has little recourse once the ball starts rolling. Which is why we did not pay anything until we were ready to buy the boat as is, where is.

Tough way to buy a boat but in this Whitiby case it almost came down to that. How many owners would have even talked to the buyer?
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Why not list the Broker? If it was me that went through that ordeal, I'd list his or her name and brokerage company. They should not be selling boats...
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I would suspect (not an attorney in spite of having stayed at a reknowned holiday resort and inn) that naming the broker could result in legal action against SN, since unless actually prosecuted and convicted the individual could claim harm to reputation and business.
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Tom—

I'd point out that if everything that is said about the broker by Andy is true and documented, it is very unlikely that the broker would have any leg to stand on, since truth is a qualified defense for any libel or defamation action. I understand libel/defamation law fairly well as I was trained as a journalist.
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Old 02-11-2010
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Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Tom—

I'd point out that if everything that is said about the broker by Andy is true and documented, it is very unlikely that the broker would have any leg to stand on, since truth is a qualified defense for any libel or defamation action. I understand libel/defamation law fairly well as I was trained as a journalist.
In my experience that is just not Andy's style, calling out the broker. He was paid in full for the issues but this was ONLY after they tried to avoid compensating him for the deceit.

Had he not received the electronic evidence from the PO perhaps they would not have stepped up? I believe his point was not to call out the broker or brokerage but to give everyone a heads up about what some folks will try to pull on you..

I suppose if you are one who is in the process of buying a boat in the MD area, and are concerned as to who the broker was, you could try and ask him nicely in a PM?
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  #17  
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I had no qualms in trying to circumvent the broker when I bought my boat. The ones I dealt with were not helpful.

Some broker agreements allow the seller to sell directly without broker involvement unless the broker was contacted first.

I was happy to find a private sale
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Author weighing in once again

Well this has generated some interesting discussion. Truth be told once I was able to pull the information from the previous owner (took 2 weeks of e-mails) that there was actually a paper trail, I realized I had a leg to stand on. Without the hard evidence of documented e-mails I would have had just hearsay and it would have been worth nothing to the brokerage. I had contacted the MD attorney generals office and they told me that even with documentation, the cost would have been significant to me. Boat US has a fraud division that was willing to pursue the issue and would have listed the brokerage as undesirable on their website (actual action pending) and would have been willing to contact the Brokerage on my behalf. I even contacted the president of the Yacht Brokers Assn of America and what I was told was that they had only in 2006 enacted a code of ethics for brokers. This was not a legally binding code but that after multiple infractions could possibly result in the broker loosing their accreditation. Therefore what I learned from this was that in MD at least and probably most places, the broker are held to NO LEGAL OBLIGATION and therefore act out of personal ethics. I was told by a marine industry lawyer that I should just take what was offered and run. That since there is no legal obligation for brokers to tell the truth, that I was lucky to get what I got (and only from dogged determination and persistence). Therefore, unless I have a personal relationship with a broker going forward - I WILL NEVER TRUST A MARINE BROKER !!!!!!! and you shouldn't either - not until they are held to some accountability of their actions.
Some might say I was lucky, but I am sure I lost 10 years of my life due to pressure and stress - I couldn't let the SOB get away with what he was willing to do to my family.
Hence the story
Andy
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Old 02-11-2010
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I've started to write a post and deleted it at least four times. After two years just THINKING about the broker who sold us our boat spikes my blood pressure.

There are ways to get the AG off his/her backside. Right now you're just some guy who lives very far away. You just have to decide if it's worth the additional aggravation.

Jim
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