Join Date: May 2012
Location: North Vancouver, BC
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Re: What To Take Into Account When Considering A 40+ Year Old Sailboat?
We don't know the particulars of the deals that fell through for the OP. There are 2 sides to every story. What exactly was found by the surveyor that justified an price adjustment? How much was he trying to grind the price? Was the price already on the low side? Without details like that we can't cast judgement on whether it was the buyer or the seller being unreasonable.
We all know brokers use old photos or sistership photos a lot, for various reasons. If I were going to travel long distance to see a boat I would certainly make sure the broker sent me current condition photos. I might even ask him to go down to the boat and give me a live virtual tour using Messenger or some other video conferencing app. We also have to acknowledge that if the boat has been on the market for a while the boat may have been all clean and polished when listed, but has been neglected since. If I were the seller and I had a buyer coming from out of town I would clean it up, but not everyone thinks that way. Hell, some people don't even declutter before they take pics!
A buyer is also at a disadvantage at the negotiating table if the seller knows that you want their particular model boat and are travelling great distances to find it. Naturally they are going to drive a harder bargain. That doesnt necessarily make them corrupt or fraudulent. (Again, I dont know the particulars of the OP's cases, I'm speaking generally) they know your options are limited, and negotiate accordingly.
My advice to the OP is to be patient, and gather as much info as you can from home before travelling. Monitor the boats that you were unsuccessful on. If they continue to languish on the market then revisit them later, and you may find the owners will be more flexible and you will get your price. If they sell, then perhaps the price the owner was looking for wasn't so unreasonable after all.
In the meantime, don't take anything personally and don't burn bridges. If you cant arrive at an agreement just tell him to contact you if he changes his mind and walk away. He may just do that. If you get angry and call him a fraud etc that is far less likely.
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2011 Jeanneau 39i Azura