I looked around CF to see if there was a 'local boat buying
assitance' sticky or thread but could not find one. At SN (sailnet) there is just such a thing there where members post their locations and offer to have a look-see of boats that might be local to them, but not the interested party. I posted on this thread/sticky for the SE NY area at SN but have never been contacted because of it. Keep in mind that, at best, you might get a mostly disinterested 3rd party to have a look at the Catalina
27' (take a few pictures if they are nice) and give you a general impression.
I did take a look at a 32' Allied Seawind Ketch
in Northport, NY for a fellow in Chile
who bought the boat sight unseen because he asked me to via email
. I visited the boat while his surveyor was there and took a 'boatload' of pictures of it that I gave him through a photo
website. I am also a wannabe 'surveyor'. In return for me efforts I enjoyed the ride with him for the 30 or so nm. to NYC
. Nice chap too.
IMHO, this website (CF) has a bit more of an international flavor and maybe even more 'traffic' then SN although they have members from around the globe as well. My point is that many of the members at SN are in the US and there are quite a few good folks up in ME who might be willing to drop by a boat that someone was potentially interested in.
27's are quite a common boat as many were built. One issue that I hear is fairly common with some Catalinas is the 'Catalina smile', eg., visible cracks around the keel
. Even the most novice
of boat owners should be able to give you feedback on such things. A surveyor should look at a boat more thoroughly though. Going rates are around $10 - $13/foot and you get a 'surveyors report' which you might very well need for insurance
purposes if you buy the boat.
I would suggest that you should be able to find a boat of the same model (C 27) that is closer to your location. There must be boatloads of them on the Chesapeake where the winters are generally much less severe then in ME (less extreme freeze/thaw cycles). As with all boats there are a lot of variables that affect it's value and sea worthiness; a good surveyor should be able to identify. The 'untrained eye' might pick up on a good bit of evidence but not all problems are clearly visible.