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Old 10-07-2003
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cgha33 is on a distinguished road
Whoa...what are these charges

I just received my loan commitment letter today for a boat I''m buying...and I was shocked by the incidental charges listed in it.

Here''s what it said:

The following checked items are estimated closing costs that may be associated with your loan.

UCC Filing Fee $75
x USCG Documentation-purchase $495
USCG Documentation-refinance $295
x Title fees-varies by state $50
x Abstract $75
x State title search $10
UCC search $82
x Loan fee $195
Express Mail $38
QuickTrak Inspection $125
Other $0

What are these friggin'' fees, and which are manditory, and which are BS??? I live in Maryland, btw.

Who can enlighten me on these, or some of these????

And, of course, these do not include the 5% state tax that Maryland tacks on to the sail price, which will amount to $2500.

It''s like buying a house with all the "closing costs"...and not like a car, which it should be.

When I bought my last boat in 1990 the only add-ons were state tax, and $15 to register the boat and $15 charge as a lien fee.

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Old 10-07-2003
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flicker is on a distinguished road
Whoa...what are these charges

Remember, some of these fees are tax deductible as with a house.

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Old 10-07-2003
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Whoa...what are these charges

It would appear that the bulk costs are related to the documentation process which banks now require on boat loans. These are all being tacked on because you are not doing your own documentation work. I believe on loans originating Maryland, you are allowed to request that you provide the documentation services however the lender has the right to reject your loan in that case. The goal of documentation is to prove clear title and restrict your ability to sell the boat without paying off the loan. You might look for less expensive documentation services or do the work yourself. The cost should be less expensive if the boat is currently documented rather than titled.

I have no idea what the ''loan fee'' or the ''QuickTrak Inspection'' is. You might question those and also look else where to see what other loan choices might be available.

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Old 10-08-2003
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DonFoley is on a distinguished road
Whoa...what are these charges

One of my few pet pieves in life was my last boat loan. I asked my finance company at the very beginning if I could handle my own documentation, my broker said she''d do it for $75. They said yes. Fast forward to the day before closing when they hit me up for $450 for USCG documentation and said it was required for the loan. Could I have backed out? Sure, but my deadline for getting financing on the boat contract was a couple days away, so I just bit the bullet and went ahead. Lessons learned. Get all the fees in writing LONG before closing so you can reconsider if you need to. Yes, the bank disclosed all the fees, but when I saw the USCG documentation I asked about doing it myself and they replied, but they never (and I didn''t request) a new fee disclosure form with the new fee structure.
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Old 10-08-2003
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quinlanmw is on a distinguished road
Whoa...what are these charges

Obtaining your own USCG documentation is ridiculously easy.

I obtained my own documentation on my boat, purchased last December, through the internet. The title abstract cost $25, the documentation fee was $84 and the bill of sale fee was $8. The USCG National Vessel Documentation Center is an easy find with a basic internet search.

The listing broker tried to strong arm me into using their recommended documentation service, at a cost of I think $300 or $400. Mine was a cash sale, so there was no finance company to threaten me with denying a loan. I stood my ground under an implied threat from the broker that obtaining the documentation myself would somehow be invalid.

The only thing the finance company truly needs up front is the title abstract. The process of obtaining the documentation itself will take about 6 weeks and is not a prerequisite for closing the sale.

Most of us have been bombarded with obscure fees when closing a home loan. Many of us also meekly go along when we realize that costs amortized in the mortgage aren''t that significant and by this time we are so emotionally invested that we roll over in the face of the deal possibly falling through. Your emotional investment in buying your boat is likely even larger.

I urge you to stand your ground on this. Remember the boat market is different from real estate..it''s defintely a buyer''s market so you do have leverage. Good luck.

Regards, Mike
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