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Old 27-08-2013, 10:52   #1
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Finance/Repo Advice Needed.

Hey Folks,

I find myself in a very difficult and embarrassing situation and could use some serious advice.

Last year my wife and I sold everything we own, except a fourplex rental, bought our Gemini and paid off the rental unit. We set out to live our cruising dream while living frugally off of the income provided by the rental property.

In January there was a fire caused by illegal activity in one of the units. The building was a total loss. Our insurance company is refusing to pay the claim. We have an attorney fighting with the insurance company and he has given us hope that we will prevail.......Eventually.....

Today I sit here wondering why I paid off the rental property and financed the boat. I have reached the point that I am unable to keep up my boat payments. I am currently in CentralAmerica and wondering how to proceed.

Do I sail immediately back to the US and turn my only home over to the bank?

Can I avoid repossession until I settle with the insurance company and can come current or pay off the boat loan?

I spoke with the loan company and they are not willing to work with me.

What are the realities of a US loan company repossessing a boat that is located in another country?

Please understand, I am not trying to screw the bank. I just need time to rectify the situation.

Any advice would be appreciated.

Thanks

Mo
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Old 27-08-2013, 11:44   #2
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If your attorney is working with the insurance company then maybe he could deal with the finance company and assure them you will be current soon
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Old 27-08-2013, 12:28   #3
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Re: Finance/Repo advice needed.

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If your attorney is working with the insurance company then maybe he could deal with the finance company and assure them you will be current soon
Good thought. Unfortunately we have already tried that. The attorney says it could be 6-12 months and the finance company refuses to consider any accommodation that exceeds 90 days. We are approaching 30 days at this point. According to the (SEVERAL) people contacted at the finance company when we hit 90 days they will take our boat. That said, I get the impression that the people I am talking to know even less than I do about the logistics involved with taking a boat when they don't even know what country it is located in.

New info: just received an email from my attorney. Looks like we are going to have to file a lawsuit against the insurance co (travelers group). He is confident enough in the outcome he is working on contingency.

I have depleted savings, borrowed from family and tried to borrow from the bank.

The guy at the bank laughed at me. No job, no income, no permanent address,no way. Regardless of 800+ credit score.
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Old 27-08-2013, 12:46   #4
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Re: Finance/Repo advice needed.

Where are my manners?


Thank you for taking the time to read and respond to my questions.

Mo
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Old 27-08-2013, 12:56   #5
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Re: Finance/Repo advice needed.

Maybe you can sell the lot that the fourplex was on.
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Old 27-08-2013, 12:58   #6
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Re: Finance/Repo advice needed.

What terrible bad luck, Gemini... If the lender is playing hard ball, I'd be inclined to keep the boat where it is and return to build up your cruising kitty. Hopefully, your attorney will bring you some good news soon an you can settle up but the lender is between a rock and a hard place if his security is somewhere off shore. No need to share with the lender exactly where it is as they are being so helpful and understanding. Your integrity is what will be the most important thing at this point. Just my opinion... Phil
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Old 27-08-2013, 13:04   #7
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Re: Finance/Repo advice needed.

I think the answer depends on the boat. What I mean is a very expensive new boat would be more likely to be worth the repo mans time and effort ($$$$) as opposed to an older boat of much less value. Not that it has anything to do with your situation but I have an older motor home and during the big crash could not make the payments to a large US bank. I wrote them a letter just saying what was going on and fifured if they wanted it they could come get it. Fours years latter they never did and I just resumed making payments.
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Old 27-08-2013, 13:05   #8
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Re: Finance/Repo advice needed.

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Originally Posted by Thumbs Up View Post
Maybe you can sell the lot that the fourplex was on.
We have considered that. Concerned that it may cause trouble with our want to have the insurance company pay to rebuild.

I am really out of my league in that arena. I am leaning on my attorney for that.

Unfortunately he has no advice regarding steps to retain the boat until things are resolved.

Thank you for the suggestion.
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Old 27-08-2013, 13:10   #9
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Re: Finance/Repo advice needed.

Hi Gemini:

I have no experience in boat repo's or any other kind for that matter. I had a friend who bought a truck in CA and then moved to MT. He lost his job and couldn't make payments anymore so he called the CA bank and said -- come pick the truck up. They asked him where he told them it was in MT and they asked if he would be willing to drive it back to CA. They never got the truck back and when he found a job he started making payments again.

Banking rules are much more strict now but I can't see that there is much chance of them repoing the boat across national borders.

Can you continue sailing w/o making payments on the boat. If so then just keep going till the lawsuit is settled.
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Old 27-08-2013, 13:13   #10
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Re: Finance/Repo advice needed.

Sorry to hear of your misfortune. Insurance is a racket and ripoff.
If the boat has enough value, a repo man will come find it that is certain.
If you have assets, the finance company might go after them, instead of the boat,
you'd have to check what you agreed to in the fine print.
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Old 27-08-2013, 13:15   #11
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Re: Finance/Repo advice needed.

Ouch .

I think definitely one for your lawyer to advise on - especially on what options the finance company has and how best to work with them (could be that they would settle on having the added security of a formal lien on the insurance monies that are due to you - of course that may mean that at the end of the day not enough cash to rebuild the property as the Finance Company snaffle their cash).

and very likely that letters from the lawyer will be given more weight than from you when proposing a temporary deal and as part of negotiating that he can write to them nicely saying: "good luck with finding the boat ".....not to say that you want to sail off into the sunset waving 2 fingers at them , but it is one of the potential scenarios and likely something they should be bearing in mind.........but to achieve that will need to get above the folks who simply do what the computer says (my guess is that your circumstances don't fit into the "standard" - so you need someone with half a brain involved at the Finance Company who can make decisions)........my guess is the standard is to get a judgement ASAP so they can then easily go after your assets as and when they appear - so IMO you want to offer them that without the extra cost and aggro of them going all legal on yer ass .

To my view, the thing you want to avoid is going in default with the finance company - not so much for the negative credit scores but to save racking up finance company penalties and legal costs (for judgement and attempted recovery)........would be simple enough for the Finance Company to give you a year to play with at interest only (rolled up) in exchange for the "lien" (likely a different legal term - but am having a brain fart at the moment!) over the insurance monies. The risk is of course that you lose the claim , but you could also throw in the sweetener as part of getting the 12 months leeway of agreeing to bring the boat back to US waters (at a named port?) until the claim is settled so that in 12 months time they can easily seize and sell the boat (if you have not done so already by then - IMO would be wise to at least put it on the market, just in case - don't want to end up with a forced sale and perhaps still owe some cash on her!).

I am of course not a lawyer! - best of luck .
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Old 27-08-2013, 13:16   #12
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Re: Finance/Repo advice needed.

My .02$? Sail home and tell the bank where the boat is. You signed a note promising to pay and if not the bank gets the boat back. It's not the banks fault you got yourself in a bind. Now the good news is that the banks are all inefficient and will likely take many months to get around to repossessing the boat. In the mean time you should have time to get a job and start working to get caught up and avoid the repossession. Probably not what you wanted hear, but it is the "honest" way.

Tom
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Old 27-08-2013, 13:17   #13
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Re: Finance/Repo advice needed.

Did you have a management company handling the property? If so, are they not liable for allowing illegal activity on your property? I assume that is the reason the insurance company is refusing to pay. I would add them to the suit. Just a thought. As for being nice to the bank and bringing the boat back for them, well, I would be just as nice as they are being to me...

Vibes for ya...
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Old 27-08-2013, 13:21   #14
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Re: Finance/Repo advice needed.

Mo:

Sorry about your situation. Sometimes crap things happen to even nice people. Doesn't make it any easier, I know.

While I can not talk knowledgeably about your PARTICULAR boat or finance company, I can tell you that credit issues don't necessarily "follow you". They certainly will be right where they are (or worse) should you ever decide to return to the US, but it is very unlikely that any repo agent will attempt to take your boat if

a) you don't go around publicizing where you are
b) you don't sail back into US waters
c) you stay in small, quiet places that are not desperately friendly with the US.

You probably will be able to buy yourself some time. I had a situation not totally unlike yours, and even in the UK the US folks couldn't really do anything to me until my divorce worked itself out and all the pieces finally fell where they needed to. I just kept my head down and wouldn't tell anyone where I was until the legal stuff was worked out.

Worth a shot...sure beats the alternative, since you DID try and negotiate with them. Go radio silent.

Good luck.
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Old 27-08-2013, 13:22   #15
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Re: Finance/Repo advice needed.

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I think the answer depends on the boat. What I mean is a very expensive new boat would be more likely to be worth the repo mans time and effort ($$$$) as opposed to an older boat of much less value. Not that it has anything to do with your situation but I have an older motor home and during the big crash could not make the payments to a large US bank. I wrote them a letter just saying what was going on and fifured if they wanted it they could come get it. Fours years latter they never did and I just resumed making payments.
It's tough to place an objective price on something you are so attached to.... similar boats on yachtworld $80-110k. I owe a bit less than $60k. Of course My Boat is much better than any of those


Will they really come looking for it? Mexico, Guatemala, Panama or points South?

As best I can figure it would work something like this if I let them take it:

Value: $90k
Sale @ auction: $60k
Less "costs": - $6k. ?
Balance applied to principal: $54k

Leaving me homeless and owing $5k on a boat I no longer possess.

I know it may sound like a bad thing to do but, if I can, I would rather lie low for a year until I can make financial amends. Instead of giving up my dream and my home.

Is that unrealistic?
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