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Old 06-04-2015, 07:24   #16
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Re: What happens after a bad survey?

ok so you looked at a boat
you made offer on boat
you got surveyor to look at it for financing and insurance reasons
NOW
you find that which YOU should have found BEFORE purchase.
what others before you and before public forums did ...
fix it n keep on going.
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Old 06-04-2015, 07:42   #17
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Re: What happens after a bad survey?

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Originally Posted by S/V Illusion View Post



As a retired insurance liability attorney, I have seen many such successful recoveries including one by my son for a very similar omission.

That's interesting. Care to elaborate on that with some useful information for the OP? Who might he contact first? Is there a surveyors institute or governing body with information on disputes? Is there a government body for claims?
As an attorney specialising in this I guess you would have also seen a lot of unsuccessful actions. What were the circumstances of your sons similar claim? Any details would be greatly appreciated I'm sure.
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Old 06-04-2015, 07:50   #18
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Re: What happens after a bad survey?

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I'm curious as to which side of the recoveries you were on? And how many recoveries did you see where the party wasn't using an attorney?
What I "saw" is only a trivial fraction of cases such as this so it is meaningless to cite numbers with which I was personally involved. Suffice it to say surveyor's would not carry E&O insurance if they didn't need to pay out for losses due to omissions.

Being a boater which means i know many people who have had similar experiences, I've 'seen' many cases resolved to the benefit of the purchaser regardless of attorney involvement.

The problem is some people see hold-harmless language in the survey report and assume they have no recourse. When people suggest here that the purchaser is 'screwed', such advice is both wrong and uninformed.

If you don't know what you are talking about, dont!

In response to the last post, the process to file a claim is analogous to that in any insurance case. Contact the surveyor's underwriter who will explain their specific procedures for filing a claim. Follow their steps in writing with as much documentation available including all receipts to support a monetary claim. My experience is such cases get resolved in a few weeks.
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Old 06-04-2015, 08:39   #19
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Re: What happens after a bad survey?

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Originally Posted by zeehag View Post
ok so you looked at a boat
you made offer on boat
you got surveyor to look at it for financing and insurance reasons
NOW
you find that which YOU should have found BEFORE purchase.
what others before you and before public forums did ...
fix it n keep on going.
You are making a big presumption that it was purely for financing and insurance reasons.

We've only bought 2 larger boats but both times the surveyor found items we missed and we were able to account for it in the deal.

I wouldn't buy a cruising boat without the offer being contingent on a survey even though I know far more about how they are put together than I did 20yrs ago. If nothing else it's an objective set of eyes when you are looking at your potential new love.

Now back to the issue of what happens when the surveyor misses something...
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Old 06-04-2015, 09:09   #20
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Re: What happens after a bad survey?

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So we bought our new to us dream boat after an extensive survey by a certified professional who has been in business for many years. Unfortunately he missed something big that is costing several boat bucks to fix.

He spent allot if time explaining what he was finding and seemed to honestly want to do a good job. He did not do any research online about the make and model because it is a fairly common line. After I discovered that my upper rudder bearing was not attached to anything because the support had completely rusted away, I found several references to similar issues on similar boats very quickly with a simple search on Jeanneau and rudder.

I don't want to be a jerk but I feel like a simple search could have at least prepared me for this major issue. He is supposed to be an expert but says he has never heard of this type of problem on this kind of boat. He offered to refund 1/2 of his fee but has not called back to setup how to repay me.

Someone suggested to me that I could claim it on insurance. Who's insurance, mine? The surveyor's?

Has anyone been in a similar situation? What did you do? What would you do?

Thanks in advance.
Bite the bullet probably. Call him again speak nicely and infer a satisfied customer tells three a dissatisfied tells eight. That is probably understated today. If he has a boss go to them or if associated with a certification outfit go there. **** flows down hill.
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Old 06-04-2015, 09:16   #21
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Re: What happens after a bad survey?

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I don't fullly understand all that is marine. Much of it is still a learning process for me in vessels greater than 30'.

However what I do know is Real Estate. A paid professional in the Real Estate world is an appraiser. This person's job is to understand what is being appraised, what condition the structure is in at the time of inspection and how it compares in the market place in which the structure is located. That is just an overview and residential Real Estate appraisers carry E&O insurance. Stands for Errors and Omissions.

If some one is suggesting making a claim on insurance it would be this insurance. The coverage or policy details are commonly listed in a Real Estate appraisal report. Your survey report may have the same. This assumes the surveyor has E&O insurance. Not sure if it is required and part of the discovery process is discovering who is and what qualifications the discoverer has!

>>>>>>>>>Action
A surveyor is more analogous to a Home Inspector than an Appraiser. An appraiser spends 20 minutes inspecting a house while a home inspector spends 2-3 hours although every home inspection report has a disclaimer saying the inspector is not responsible for what he misses. Surveys have the same disclaimer. IMHO you're lucky that's all he missed. If you can get a refund you're doing well.
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Old 06-04-2015, 09:50   #22
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Re: What happens after a bad survey?

I've been doing shipwright work for several (40+) years. Only once did I encounter an error and omission by a surveyor. It pertained to the foredeck and foc'sle damage from termites and dry rot. The owner discovered the problem and asked me to sit down with the surveyor, a highly respected and experienced individual. The owner presented his case, the surveyor politely listened, asked a couple questions, inspected the contested area, and then told me (I had known him for several years in our trade) to do WHATEVER repairs I deemed necessary to making the boat comply to our mutually agreed standards for structural integrity. I did the work, which included removal of the entire foredeck, replacement of all deck beams and the foredeck hatch, reinstalling the windlass and supporting deck gear, and some rigging work associated with the headstay tang. He gave me a large deposit and promptly paid off the balance upon presentation of the bill. He then went to his own insurance agent and was partially reimbursed. He is still in business, many years later.
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Old 06-04-2015, 09:57   #23
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Re: What happens after a bad survey?

I think the Real Question is has there ever been a Marine Survey that didn't "miss" something? Some of the misses are minor to fix....others not so minor. The Safety Blanket feeling of a Surveyor isn't all it's cracked up to be at times.
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Old 06-04-2015, 10:02   #24
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Re: What happens after a bad survey?

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A surveyor is more analogous to a Home Inspector than an Appraiser. An appraiser spends 20 minutes inspecting a house while a home inspector spends 2-3 hours although every home inspection report has a disclaimer saying the inspector is not responsible for what he misses. Surveys have the same disclaimer. IMHO you're lucky that's all he missed. If you can get a refund you're doing well.

The appraisers that spent 20 minutes in a home have left the industry after several laws have been past. Most appraisers may only have less than an hour at the home, it is the 3 to 10 hours not spent at the subject home that make the report.

And appraisers are required to have E&O insurance. Not having coverage means not getting work other than non-bank transactions.

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Old 06-04-2015, 10:29   #25
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Re: What happens after a bad survey?

I've bought a few boats (and a few houses) - with *every* one, I've found issues the surveyor (or appraisor/inspector) "missed"

Do your best upfront - research the boat type/model for issues - look for each of them on *that* boat you are interested in.

Crawl through the boat - open everything you can open, peer in every crack/crevice/space, ask yourself "how could this thing go wrong and what would it cost to fix?" - focus on the big items first.....

Good Luck!
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Old 06-04-2015, 10:41   #26
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You Swear a Helluva Lot...
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Old 06-04-2015, 10:42   #27
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Re: What happens after a bad survey?

If it is as obvious as what you say, then by all means get compensation. You could file a claim with your insurance and let them know that the surveyor screwed up, then they can go after his insurance.... I don't think or assume surveyors should find everything, but obvious ones they should find. A completely botched rudder bearing should be felt in the sea trial and when hauled out also.
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Old 06-04-2015, 10:50   #28
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Re: What happens after a bad survey?

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A surveyor is more analogous to a Home Inspector than an Appraiser. An appraiser spends 20 minutes inspecting a house while a home inspector spends 2-3 hours although every home inspection report has a disclaimer saying the inspector is not responsible for what he misses. Surveys have the same disclaimer. IMHO you're lucky that's all he missed. If you can get a refund you're doing well.
I agree. I've had an appraisal recently and have two personal friends that were for many years. First, since the recent recession, lenders started using appraisers who know nothing really. I assume the lenders started using some nationwide large appraisal companies instead of knowledgeable people who know the actual area they are appraising in. I swear the little gal who did ours was no more than 22 YO. The two appraisers I know retired when the recession occurred due to this.
Second, no appraiser has ever assessed the actual condition or problems on any unit I've had done, They just come up with a general condition statement.
Maybe other states are different.
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Old 06-04-2015, 10:54   #29
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Re: What happens after a bad survey?

I think that if you bought a 50ft boat, and this is the only problem, resulting in spending a couple of thousand dollars, then you are doing quite well.
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Old 06-04-2015, 11:38   #30
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Re: What happens after a bad survey?

Are you saying that the E & O covers something the surveyor breaks while doing his/her survey but not for failing to discovering a latent problem?


Wouldn't the rudder be noticeably loose if the upper bearing were missing? That ought to be noticeable in an inspection if the boat is pulled for inspection.
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