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  Topic Review (Newest First)
10-29-2012 04:38 PM
Re: buyer's broker payment questions

Originally Posted by KIVALO View Post
be forthright and realistic about your needs and wants in a boat and make sure to discuss them frankly with your broker.
Excellent point. The broker can't help you if he doesn't know--in absolutely unequivocal terms--what it is that you want. Given the OPs other postings here I have to wonder if he is hemming and hawing, and letting the broker tell him what he should look for, rather than coming straight out and saying in words that cannot be misunderstood, "This is the kind of boat that I want, and this is how much I am willing to pay."
10-29-2012 12:59 PM
Re: buyer's broker payment questions

I'm in Real Estate and I often work as a buyer's broker. bljones is right. A good broker will not wish to waste his time pushing you towards something you dont want. If you decide to go with a broker, be forthright and realistic about your needs and wants in a boat and make sure to discuss them frankly with your broker. That more than anything else will help you both greatly.

Good luck!


Originally Posted by bljones View Post
As someone who works on commission, I will argue that if you want results, hire a guy who doesn't get paid unless he gets the job done.

Of course, there are those who argue that "well, because a broker works on commission, he is going to steer me toward higher priced boats so he can make more money."
It makes no sense to a commission broker to steer you toward a boat you won't buy. It wastes his time and money, because if you don't buy he makes nothing. He also runs the risk of losing you as clients, because he is wasting YOUR time, too.

A GOOD broker will find you the right boat, at the right price, as quickly as possible.
10-29-2012 12:50 PM
Re: buyer's broker payment questions

Originally Posted by fowlerpb View Post
I don't go back on my word, and now I have a broker who I looked in the eye and promised to use.
Yeah, and he looked you in the eye and made promises, too, didn't he? And he is not keeping those promises, is he? He is not representing you the way he should be. You will NOT be breaking your promise if you go and find someone else. He already broke the deal!
10-27-2012 04:36 PM
Re: buyer's broker payment questions

I think you can go with someone like Robert Perry as he offers a consulting service. He may not go out and find the actual boat, but he should be able to whittle down the list anyway. It is really more just honestly looking at your intentions on what you are doing with the boat, and finding boats that fit that need. If you are going to be day sailing in lighter winds, (say Chesapeake Bay for example) then a heavy cruiser is not going to be a good match.

You really should be able to narrow it down quite easily even by posting the list here and what your plans are. No one here has a bone in the fight, but remember the advice may be worth what you paid for it.

As far as fire damaged boat, that would not be a deal killer but even if fixed properly it would still be worth perhaps 60% of what a good example was worth.

Did you wind up with a boat?
10-27-2012 04:04 PM
Re: buyer's broker payment questions

" It takes too much time to go look at all these boats. "
Then go buy a new boat, because any broker or agent you could hire is going to have to spend that much time and more, and they're entitled to be paid for that time. And presumably more expertise than you have.

The cruel truth.
10-26-2012 09:30 PM
Re: buyer's broker payment questions

Stumble - a refreshing outlook for sure. That scenario didn't exist here 18 years ago when I quit yacht brokerage after 22 years. That's one of the primary reasons I quit, disappointment with an industry I equated to the wild west. There was a broker in Vancouver, one in Halifax & a couple in Great Lakes area I held in high esteem. The rest were kinda status quo people. Sadly, real estate has turned out to be similar. Although regulated (self-regulating) in Ontario, when you get on the street there are too many agents working part time and not focused on their careers, eeking it out from deal to deal, and either unfamiliar with their duties to clients or not overly concerned about them.
10-26-2012 08:44 PM
Re: buyer's broker payment questions

find honest marina look over boats for sale sail one find honest surveyer
that is most of the battle
start low
broker will sell you most expensive boat
boat you sail good fittings good sail everything works
clean taken car of
10-26-2012 08:25 PM
Re: buyer's broker payment questions


As has been mentioned before in this thread, most boat brokers are actually representing the seller, even if they are 'your' broker. This is because they are also working for a brokerage house that carries contracts with owners to sell their boats.

There are some ways around this, but it may cost a bit up front. I would recommend hiring a buyers agent. NOT a broker. Having worked in this capacity a number of times I can tell you how I have dealt with it.

1) I take a flat payment when a boat is purchased or 18 months after our contract is signed, whicever comes first. Regardless of the amount the boat cost. Typically this will be set at around 3% of the top of the expected range.
2) I may or may not get a bonus if the boat, after outfitting is below a certain amount. This has typically been in the 10% of the amount I am going to get paid in 1.
3) Any approved expenses (travel, air fare, hotels) are paid in addition. But I try to keep it to a minimum, and explain why I feel this particular trip is justified.
4) I may or may not oversea outfitting, it depends on the owner. But this is a seperate deal.

What this allows is the buyer to know that I really don't have a financial investment in trying to get them into a more expensive boat. There is a slight incentive for a cheaper on, but not a major one. And frankly I want happy customers way more than I want an extra 10%. One client begets another, and the real money here comes from finding a boat everyone is happy with.

There is another issue that really bothers me, and that is finding a truly good surveyor. Without knowing who is good locally, it isn't unusual to have a surveyor who gets a lot of business from just one or two brokerages. While they may be great, the conflict here is even worse than for a broker, since at least a brokers conflicts are above the table.
10-26-2012 05:47 PM
Re: buyer's broker payment questions

Based on what you just stated, he is not acting as your Buyer Broker, he is acting as sub-agent (maybe the wrong term, SN lawyer members could clarify) of the Seller. If he knows your confidential info there is a very good chance he is revealing that info to the Seller Broker 'to put a deal together'. I was a yacht broker, I'm now a REALTOR and saw/see this action regularly - Agents forgetting who they owe confidence, confidentiality and fuduciary duty to, all just for another buck. No wonder my wife calls them pimps and whores.
10-26-2012 05:33 PM
Re: buyer's broker payment questions

I know this thread is a little old. But I would like to update.

Generally, a lot of the advise on the thread is good.

I finally gave in and decided to get a buyer broker, because there is simply too much to do on my own.

He has shown me a boat that meets my criteria (but on the high price range.)

I put an offer in on the boat. HOWEVER, my broker has also tried to get me to buy quicker than I can really research the boat (less time = more money) AND he has even tried to negotiate us UP in asking price beyond 120% the amount the bank is willing to loan us... I am also suspect that he appears to be downplaying problems with the boat concerning a fire and a spongey deck.

It had been too long since I last looked at this thread. Looking back over the last few weeks, three pieces of advice in the thread I should have followed but can't take back are as follows:
  • Do not reveal finances to any broker
  • Spend extra time finding brokers that other people have been pleased with. If you search 200 hours looking at boats, at least spend 1 hour searching for a broker that has made clients happy. (People will say I am just biased, but when I first talked to the broker I was happy that I found someone to help me get past the searching. That happiness was short lived when he started talking me up in my asking price beyond what I had declared as my top limit.)
  • Practice negotiation

Boat brokers do not work for a buyer. However, some brokers might make you much happier than other brokers. My new stance is that an ability for a broker to make you happy for a long time with the purchase is the differentiator. I wish I could just find that broker. I don't go back on my word, and now I have a broker who I looked in the eye and promised to use. I just have to get real good real quick at negotiating boat prices against 2 seller brokers (one of which knows my finances.)
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