Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Yeocomico River, VA
Thanked 18 Times in 15 Posts
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We purchased our previous boat by private sale and our current one by broker. Both experiences were very positive. We used Annapolis Yacht Sales and were very pleased with how they helped narrow our search and how they actually fought for us on the purchase. Keep in mind that a really good broker, while working for the seller, wants to make the sale. Thus, he will "guide" an unrealistic seller's price toward something reasonable, especially if there is a serious buyer involved.
Regarding peace of mind, others are correct when they say that used boats generally have nothing of the sort, whether purchased privately, through a broker, or new boat dealer. However, your comfort will come from a detailed survey. A surveyor, selected by the buyer (without influence from the seller or broker) will find the vast majority of warts on a boat. The survey will not be cheap and the buyer should resist the temptation to go with a cheap "Insurance Survey" and should opt for a "Purchase Survey". When the surveyor has completed the survey (including sea trial) you will have a great understanding of the boat. In our case, our surveyor rescued the sale when she found a structural defect that I missed.
My recommendation is to find the boat that fits your needs regardless of who's selling it. If it's brokered, don't sweat the difference in price. After a couple of years, it won't matter. In our case, we were neutral regarding seller. Our broker found us a boat that we never even saw in our searches. After narrowing our list to 3 boats, we looked at all 3 and bought the 2nd one. The point is that we knew what we wanted, limited the search, and then made a purchase. Broker was secondary; I really didn't care.
Sabre 38 "Victoria"
Last edited by Sabreman; 11-04-2010 at 12:07 PM.