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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know this a tough question to answer, but maybe there's a general trend in today's market of sailboat buying that people are following. I really don't like bargaining, but I'm in the position of being priced out of the market on a boat that's "owner-valued" at something under 100K. The NADA value is less, but these boats have typically sold for about the current asking price.
What would you do?
 

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Nobody says you have to bargain. if you see a listing for a boat you like but you think the price is too high, just cross it off your list. Problem solved. Re-read your own post, and think about it. You don't like bargaining, but you feel that every boat for sale that you like is overvalued. You have choices- pony up, shut up, and go sailing, grumble, complain, walk away, and stay on the hard for another season...
or learn that negotiation is a skill that can be learned, and is rewarding for both buyers and sellers. But a little realism doesn't hurt.
You know what funds you have available. You know what the boat of your dreams is listing for. if there are a few comparable dreamboats for sale, you can get an idea of how realistic pricing is. look at listings and see when they were last updated.
But don't be an idiot. if you have 50 k available in ready funds today, and all of the boats you are drooling over are running 100K plus, then man up and shut up. Nobody is selling their boats for half of list today unless a) they are realllly desperate, b) the boat is worth less than half of asking, or c) the wife got it in the settlement, and they don' t take boats as collateral at Saks.

having said all of this, I would not hesitate to offer 55%, as long as my broker knows that this is "not a take it or leave it" offer, and to convey that to the seller. your first offer simply gets the boat in play.

You offer 55%, they come down to 90%, you offer 65%, they come down to 90%, you meet in the middle at 75-80% , everybody feels it is a great deal.
 

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Iroquois MkII
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Why would you tell the broker it's not a take it or leave it offer? That just lets the seller know you'll pay more ...

Bid low, see what happens. The worst they can do is say no.

It's a lousy market for sellers, if there's a bunch of boats you like, just move on to the next one, until you find somebody willing to sell low.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I appreciate your replies. I'd be financing this puppy. Not having bought such a large toy (that I actually plan to live on), I'm not familiar how the big-boat buying game is played. There are more variables to consider when buying a boat compared to buying a car. There's value and there's market price. The two can be further apart regarding boats because it's not like there are only a few used Hondas to choose from in a 300 mile radius from where you live. In my boat search, there are only 2 of this type on the entire west coast that are for sale and only a handful more that exist out here.
I'll be throwing in an offer...after I visit the other one for sale that actually is priced way high.
 

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my 2 cents

I read a quote somewhere... (i think it was in Don Casey's This Old Boat) regarding making an offer.. it went something like this:
"make an offer of half the asking price but, beware, because they may accept it."

anyway good luck!
 

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...It's a lousy market for sellers, if there's a bunch of boats you like, just move on to the next one, until you find somebody willing to sell low.
I suggest you remember what I think is a fundamental about the boat buying process - it is a very unequal process, the seller tends to have perfect information, knowing everything worth knowing about the boat, while the buyer will have less than perfect information, either way less if no surveyor is involved, or only partially incomplete if a good surveyor is used.

The result is that in most boat purchases the seller is far more likely to get a good deal, i.e. more money than deserved given the real condition of the boat. And this is particularly true when the boat sale is at an apparently below market price, the seller is likely equipped with knowledge as to why he is making out like a bandit, even as the buyer thinks he's made a killing, a regular Donald Thrump.

Even in today's slow boat market, the best you can expect in a boat purchase is to get what you pay for...
 

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Big Chicken Baby
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Condition trumps all! We currently have a contract on a boat and are awaiting survey and sea trial. We offered about 10% above market because the condition of the boat is about 90% above market.

That being said, we have made offers on other boats that we're accepted at almost 30% off of asking/market. Survey showed these boats weren't worth even the discounted price so we passed on them.

Nada values are low, Buc is a little more reaslitic. Are you working with a buyer's broker? The only added benefit they can offer is that they have access to Boat Wizard, which tells you what these boats have been selling for recently. If you are looking at very rare boats, you don't really get much information as there aren't enough models sold to give solid pricing info.

Do your homework. Find out what the market value is but in the end, a boat is only worth what you are willing to pay. I personally wouldn't expect much positive response from a seller if you offer a really low ball offer. Sellers can get really offended and the ones who don't have a realisitic view of what their boat is worth tend to be the first to be offended. If a boat is not marketed at a realsitic price, chances are the seller does not have a firm grip on reality and you are better off looking elsewhere, there are lots of good boats out there you just have to look a bit!

Good luck!
 

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I think it is dangerous to use the seller's asking price as a guide in any way. Just because the seller pulls a number out of his/her ass doesn't mean much of anything, so why would 10% or 20% less than that number mean anything ? Figure out what the boat is actually worth to you and use that to make your offer.
 

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Bombay Explorer 44
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NEVER EVER think in terms of a fixed percentage. Remember there are liars, dammed liars and then there are people selling boats.

I have travelled hundreds of miles to look at a boat "above average sailaway condition" to turn around without getting out of the car. The engine was sitting on the deck covered with the bottom of the cockpit which had been removed with a chain saw.

REGARDLESS of the asking price set your own value, then offer about 75% as a starting point. Remember it is very hard to come down on an offer, you can always go up.
 

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Talk to your insurance company. They will likely have a range or limit to which they will insure. If they say they will only insure this $100,000 boat for $75,000 then you'll have a problem with the financing company. They won't finance more than about 75% of the insured value.

I found that finance and insurance companies have tightened up considerably. It won't matter if you are willing to pay $120,000, you might not get financing! Or you'll pony up a very big downstroke.
 

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Too bad, there's a good chance the more expensive boat was worth far more than the difference in the prices.
There's a "good chance" ? None of us knows one way or the other, all you know are that there are two integers involved and that one of them is 16000 and the other one is 11000, that could mean absolutely anything. Maybe the one asking 16k$us woke up Tuesday before last and realized he needed to sell his 10k$us boat for 16k$us to cover his divorce settlement, or the other woke up and realized he needed to sell his 30k$us boat for 10k$us so he could quickly send money to his sick niece.

Who knows how people end up with prices like 16k$us or 10k$us, half the time they probably don't even know. I've sat with people who have put a price on things before and most of the time they seem to just turn their head slightly to one side or the other, look up at the ceiling for a minute, then pull a number out of the air. All you CAN know is that there are two boats out there, maybe (until you've seen them who knows ...), and that they are in various states of disrepair, being offered for sale by whoever, for whatever purpose. You just have to go look at the boats and figure out what they are worth to YOU, then make an offer, if you dare. :)
 

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research, research, research, and you can do it by looking right here on the internet. Use yachtworld.com as a comparison for pricing, or another similiar site. A lot of variables in your question.

I spent 6 months looking on the net at 40 - 50.ft. monos making comparisons. I talked these over with knowledgable sailing friends, and not so knowledgable. I had no idea sites like this existed.

One day while looking I saw my current cat. I never intended to buy a cat thinking price was out of my range. I talked it over with a very knowledgable sailing friend. We came to the same conclusion. Get on a plane NOW, and fly 4k miles to look. I was at the right place at the right time with cash in hand, and now I sail something I wasn't even looking for......research, research,and more research......i2f
 

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research, research, research, and you can do it by looking right here on the internet. Use yachtworld.com as a comparison for pricing, or another similiar site. A lot of variables in your question.

I spent 6 months looking on the net at 40 - 50.ft. monos making comparisons. I talked these over with knowledgable sailing friends, and not so knowledgable. I had no idea sites like this existed.

One day while looking I saw my current cat. I never intended to buy a cat thinking price was out of my range. I talked it over with a very knowledgable sailing friend. We came to the same conclusion. Get on a plane NOW, and fly 4k miles to look. I was at the right place at the right time with cash in hand, and now I sail something I wasn't even looking for......research, research,and more research......i2f
I agree i2f that research is what will create a good outcome.

I disagree slightly with using yachtworld for pricing. There is so much variability in boats, customization, how well they were maintained, their engines, status of sails, number of sails, and everything else, that it is impossible to have a true market price for boats. Mortgage backed derivatives are sold OTC instead of being exchange traded for the same reason, because there are so many variables that it effectively makes each one of them unique. Besides, on yachtworld all you see are the ask prices, you never see the bids or what the boat sold for.
 

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I was only advising it as a guide. Not the defined word on price. You have to start somewhere, throw in some common sense, and any guide will help you if you are clueless. I also advised using other sites like yachtworld for comparison.

My point being gather as much knowledge as you can, and make some decisions. Tell me what kind of boat to buy with this amount of money is too vague. The person needs to do some research themselves. Then a question such as.....

I have looked at x,y,f boats. My use will be this, or that. x boat has, y boat needs, and f is just stock. We all start out fairly clueless. Unless you come from a boating family. I understand neeeding to get answers, but you got to do some RESEARCH first.......IMHO......i2f
 

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Yeah I agree with you i2f.

I think in the end the only people who really know what boats are worth are brokers, and that's not to say they will ever actually tell you, but they do know. Like Warren Buffett famously said - the way to know what something is worth is to buy some of it and then try to sell it.
 

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I appreciate your replies. I'd be financing this puppy. Not having bought such a large toy (that I actually plan to live on), I'm not familiar how the big-boat buying game is played. There are more variables to consider when buying a boat compared to buying a car. There's value and there's market price. The two can be further apart regarding boats because it's not like there are only a few used Hondas to choose from in a 300 mile radius from where you live. In my boat search, there are only 2 of this type on the entire west coast that are for sale and only a handful more that exist out here.
I'll be throwing in an offer...after I visit the other one for sale that actually is priced way high.

Dear Snort,
We are new to the big boat thing too.(30ft. for us) Since we had basically no idea of how things worked, we started looking at boats in our "price range" and quickly found out that generally, all listing prices seemed way high.So we started looking at boats 20% higher than our price range. With only BUC and Nada values to use as a guidepost, we ended up with a final offer that was about 20% lower than the asking price. Mind you, the asking price was way too high in our opinion anyway. I don't like to play the negotiation game either, it's worth what it's worth and i'm willing to pay a fair price. I wanted a fair price for my boat when i sold it. But that's not how alot of people operate. I think you really have to know how much you're comfortable with paying for something. You may end up kicking yourself later if you pay more than something is worth just because you can, or you just couldn't live without it at the time. We also did not have a problem telling the broker that we were not trying to insult the seller when we made a final counter offer, we were not playing a negotiating game, we were just at the top end of our range and we would have to walk away if it wasn't accepted.
The survey and time will tell if we are paying a fair price, I think so, it's a little below the BUC low end and in the middle of the NADA and it was the nicest boat of the type we wanted that we had seen.

Good Luck!
 
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