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Old 04-09-2011, 01:46   #1
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How to Determine Boat Value via Internet (Valiant 42) ?

I am somehow fixated on a Valiant 42. I would very much like to get up close and personal with one but there are only a few listings and they are all over the place as far as location and asking price. It isn't really feasible to fly all over the world t look at every Valiant that is offered.

Looking on Yachtworld.com I see a brand new 2011 Valiant 42 at $404k and a number of other boats between 1997 and 2004 in the 300k-340k range. There is also a 2008 Valiant for $595k.

How does one sort through these to see which are worthwhile to look at ? I keep seeing recommendations that electronics have a average life of 5 years so what would justify a 3 year old boat with an asking price of $595k when a new one is worth roughly $400k? Is this a situation where somebody decided that they want new cost prices for everything that went into the boat?

What about the boats in the 300k range and an age difference of 7 years - how can one judge the reasonableness of the asking price?

Short of getting a survey done on everything that is offered (probably cheaper than flying all over the country), how can one judge what might be a good deal and what is someones crazy notion of what the price should be?

I have heard figures for depreciation of 10% per year which would make a 5 year old Valiant 42 about 200K but yet I see 10 year old boats at 300k. These boats may have 5 year old sails, probably need some rigging replaced, the engine might be at 2000 hrs already and the electronics are ready for replacement so what is with the asking price?

I can just see the face of the broker when I tell them that I am only prepared to offer 50% on the asking price ....

Anyway, lots of questions from someone that can't make heads or tails out of the market place.
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Old 04-09-2011, 03:08   #2
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Track and talk...

When I was in the house buying era (oh so long ago) I found that a well educated buyer knew what the final selling price would be to within a few hundred dollars.

It didn't take much more than driving round with a few agents and chatting to them about what the houses had sold for. After checking out a few hundred houses I knew the price.

Boats are more difficult. To start with they are all over the place so actually looking at a reasonable number is almost impossible. Then their condition may also vary wildly from total cream puff to near sinking derelict.

So what to do. First, get a clear idea in your head about why you want to buy a boat. What's the dream? What's the plan? What's the budget?

My dream was to go cruising. My plan, after seeing the asking prices, was to buy a fixer upper, fix it up and then to cruise. Now, I would have done things differently but not being psychic...

I ended up with a budget of "$X" for the boat and 25% of "$X" as the p.a. running costs. For me this was a key part as, with a boat, unlike a house or even a car, there is no way any serious part of that money is ever coming back. 5 years on, despite the GFC and a looming recession I'm still on track. Scary and comforting at the same time.

This is the time to be brutally honest with yourself. Just why (no need to tell anyone) do you want/need this boat?

At this stage in the buying process I started to print out the listings of boats that I liked put them in one of those folders with clear plastic "pages" and talked to the brokers. I must have come across as a serious buyer because every broker was happy to chat.

I looked a brokerage boats and private sales. All were grossly overpriced for my budget and plan. I particularly remember one boat that was almost perfect, but was double what I had budgeted. While I dithered someone else brought it.

I met the buyer a few years later. His plans hadn't worked out, he had paid pretty well full price as he would have been aware that I was after the boat, had spent a lot of money and time fixing it but was now trying to sell it, still rather over priced for the market. As far as I am aware at the moment he is still trying to sell the boat in a falling market.

I found that (a guess) roughly half of the boats that I was looking at over my two year period sold. I made "notes" as to their estimated selling price (based on conversations with brokers, last known advertised price, and my opinion of the boat. I did get a pretty good idea of what boats cost).

The reason I really liked this Forum was that it kept me in tune with other boat owners and what it costs to keep, as opposed to buy, a boat. It became clear that 1) I needed way more knowledge of how to "fix" a cruising boat and 2) I needed to improve the training and experience of both myself and my crew. This meant that I needed to buy a boat that needed fixing and was also useable. Hence Boracay!

So you're at the beginning of the buying process.The more time that you can spend refining what you want and determining what boats actually sell for the better. I ended up getting the price right to within 20%. I trust that you can do better.
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Old 04-09-2011, 04:33   #3
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Re: How to determine boat value via internet (Valiant 42)

For a small number boat, to guage the market / value IMO you really need to also be comparing against other similar vessels, in size, design and capabilities (even if you don't actually want one)........

Not much experiance with $500k boats but I would have thought a few new sails, new rigging and some updated electronics (they don't mostly stop working after 5 years - just won't have the latest features / gadgets), plus some light interior refurb? and other upgrades personal to a new owner shouldn't break the bank for someone in that financial range, 10% of the purchase price would go along way on a boat with no actual problems....and you have a boat good for another 10 years (just add maintainence ).

Just to say that I would be happier to have an engine that had 2,000 hours on it, with a Maintanence Record (and bills) - that looked like you could eat your dinner off (that is very feasible if the TLC starts from new).......instead of a low hour engine that looks like it came out of a swamp and no bills.
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Old 04-09-2011, 06:11   #4
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Re: How to determine boat value via internet (Valiant 42)

When you can't determine the price of a commodity the market is called Illiquid.
Its exactly the same in shares, or real estate.
Quote:
What Does Illiquid Mean?
The state of a security or other asset that cannot easily be sold or exchanged for cash without a substantial loss in value. Illiquid assets also cannot be sold quickly because of a lack of ready and willing investors or speculators to purchase the asset. The lack of ready buyers also leads to larger discrepancies between the asking price (from the seller) and the bidding price (from a buyer) than would be found in an orderly market with daily trading activity.




In other words if you have difficulty working it out when you buy then others will have the same difficulty when you are selling.
One area that it can become a problem is finance: Its more difficult to borrow money when an exact valuation is not possible. A Surveyor may put the valuation far lower than you thus screwing up the loan.


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Old 04-09-2011, 06:39   #5
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Re: How to determine boat value via internet (Valiant 42)

If you are seriously interested in a Valliant 42, call Bernie at RogueWave Yacht Sales. He sails a Valliant 42, is a Valliant dealer and knows cruising boats. I really trust his knowledge and opinion, know others who have dealt with him and feel he has done a great job representing me. He represented me on the purchase of two boats and the sale of one. If I sell or buy another boat he will again represent me.
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Old 04-09-2011, 07:49   #6
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Re: How to determine boat value via internet (Valiant 42)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jd1 View Post
I am somehow fixated on a Valiant 42. I would very much like to get up close and personal with one...
- how can one judge the reasonableness of the asking price?
...
I can just see the face of the broker when I tell them that I am only prepared to offer 50% on the asking price ....
You have a lot of good advice in a few post already. I would add that most of us feel your pain. We have gone through what you are and appreciate the frustration of something that should be so ... "simple?" Most of us have bought cars and houses - why is this so...hard?

First, I bought and read/studied/reread Don Casey's "Illustrated Sailboat Maintenance Manual" which includes his book "Inspecting the Aging Sailboat." This allows you to be the "first line" Surveyor. You can eliminate or at least understand what you are seeing - even on a new boat. That will save you the costs of bringing someone in just to hear "this is not the boat." It also tells you what you need to be looking for in a boat.

You also asked the right question - how do you get up close an personal with one. That is going to require an understanding owner or a broker. If you are serious, most sellers will let you in for a look. If you are really serious they may even take you for a sail in hopes of a sale.

Next is your question on value. Consider a 1967 Shelby Mustang
GT-500 came in at $4195, about $150 less than 327 Corvette. A rebuilt 1967 Shelby could be worth $100,000+, and I doubt you can find a depreciating blue book value even listed anymore. So what is it worth in 2011? That is what you face with sailboats. They are so customizable they are worth what someone will pay for them.

A person who adds a $9000 radar/electronics package does not want to hear that it did not add $9000 value or that in 4 years it will be worth $1000 even to him or her. Or those new cushions they had to have at $4000 are nice, but add $0 to the value. So you are dealing with the emotional value of a boat. They don't want to hear - even though they "knew it" going in, that their $300,000 boat is only worth $175,000 after 5 years. Especially when they see a 15 year old version selling for $155,000. Or worse, a 40' version of the boat is selling for $250,000 while the 37' they own is selling for $125,000.

If there is any good news with regards to buying is the sellers/brokers are being pushed hard to make sales of any kind because boats are now sitting (per a broker I know) 255 days on average. It truly depends on how long a seller can hold out. Like a house on the market for a year and the seller refuses to consider a price reduction.
You know a broker is less enthused with someone holding out for the unrealistic.

So a 50% offer? If you can justify it to yourself, you may be one of those people with a story to tell on how you got a boat for half the asking price. When prices are emotion based - stranger things can happen.

Good luck!


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Old 04-09-2011, 08:14   #7
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Re: How to determine boat value via internet (Valiant 42)

Thanks for the replies guys.
I probably missed the mark in what I was trying to say when I originally stated the question so let me try this a different way.
Let's say that I am specifically in the market for a Valiant 42.
I look at Yachtworld and I see 4 listings. A new one at 400k, a 2008 at 595k, a 2004 model for 340k and a 1997 one for 330k.
In an ideal world I would go and look at each one to get a feel for things and ascertain which one offers the most value. The prices are all over the place and there seems to be no recognizable pattern to the prices.
Without seeing each boat, is there any way to determine what represents value and what is just a silly asking price?
First impression would say that if a new boat is 400k, there is no way that a 2008 should be worth 595k for example. Yes it has all kinds of goodies on it that the new boat doesn't have but it is also three years old.
To sum it up, is there any way to ascertain which of the listed boats provides value for the money (btw, this must necessarily include resale value) without actually going and looking at each boat?
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Old 04-09-2011, 09:39   #8
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Didn't Valiant stop new construction earlier this January?
Valiant No Longer Manufacturing

My professional opinion is that the '08 one is overpriced. Only justification is the fact that you cannotpurchase a new one anymore. Yacht prices are higher on the Pacific Coast especially for east coast (or in this case Gulf Coast) built boats. That is the reason behind the California outlier. If you throw out those two listings of the 9 available, there is a pretty normal depreciation curve. If you are seriously in the market for a late model V42, I'd recommend looking at the '03 and '04 models and purchasing the one in better shape.

Only other thing I might do as a sanity check is scan the brokerage soldboat records. Haven't done a deal with him but second an above average general feeling about Bernie.
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Old 04-09-2011, 09:41   #9
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Re: How to determine boat value via internet (Valiant 42)

One question to ask yourself is:

"What could the owner possibly have added to the boat to make it worth 50% more than a new one, and could that addition possibly be worth that to YOU in your application."

My guess is that the answer will be that nothing could fill that description, and that the seller is trolling for suckers.

In my observation of the market, goodies added to a newish boat don't really add much to the selling price. Rather they simply add to it's "sellability" in a competitive market.

I reckon that it is pretty hard to estimate the eventual selling price for a one-off or low production boat, either now or at some arbitrary time in the future (when you might want to re-sell your boat), for the value of such boats is simply what some customer may be willing to pay for it at that time. It's a crap shoot, and if that sort of certainty is important to you then buying a higher production model may be the only solution.

When we bought our Insatiable II (a somewhat exotic one-off) I had to remind myself that it was to be a long-term purchase, and that there was no way to guesstimate what I might recover from her when eventually we must sell and move ashore. For me the pleasure of owning her for all those years was worth the risk. YMMV.

Good luck with your decisions.

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Old 04-09-2011, 09:54   #10
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Re: How to determine boat value via internet (Valiant 42)

Quote:
Originally Posted by jordanship View Post
Didn't Valiant stop new construction earlier this January?
Valiant No Longer Manufacturing

My professional opinion is that the '08 one is overpriced. Only justification is the fact that you cannotpurchase a new one anymore. Yacht prices are higher on the Pacific Coast especially for east coast (or in this case Gulf Coast) built boats. That is the reason behind the California outlier. If you throw out those two listings of the 9 available, there is a pretty normal depreciation curve. If you are seriously in the market for a late model V42, I'd recommend looking at the '03 and '04 models and purchasing the one in better shape.

Only other thing I might do as a sanity check is scan the brokerage soldboat records. Haven't done a deal with him but second an above average general feeling about Bernie.
I am assuming the new listing is a boat that just hasn't sold yet. Of course it could be a listing for a boat yet to built that just wasn't taken down when production stopped. It is interesting though to see what the new price was compared to the used prices.
Where would I find brokerage soldboat records? The once I have seen so far always listed the last asking price and not the final transaction price.
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Old 05-09-2011, 12:47   #11
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Re: How to determine boat value via internet (Valiant 42)

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Originally Posted by Jd1 View Post
I am assuming the new listing is a boat that just hasn't sold yet. Of course it could be a listing for a boat yet to built that just wasn't taken down when production stopped. It is interesting though to see what the new price was compared to the used prices.
Where would I find brokerage soldboat records? The once I have seen so far always listed the last asking price and not the final transaction price.
jd1:

There are no more new unsold boats. The 2008 model listed is indeed Bernie's AFAIK, so a good idea to call him to talk V42s.

Options can add substantially to the cost. Where are you located?
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Old 05-09-2011, 13:25   #12
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Re: How to Determine Boat Value via Internet (Valiant 42) ?

The V42 is a very nice boat. When I was boat shopping I went on two separate trips to look at boats. Prior to that I had never been on a b-40, just seen them on the internet or a glance here and there at the dock or on the harbor.
Figure out how to see several each trip. Take lots of photos.
The one in Oriental is very nice, sweet boat.
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Old 05-09-2011, 13:31   #13
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Re: How to Determine Boat Value via Internet (Valiant 42) ?

Looks like there are several in the MD, Va region. Just fly in to a convenient airport, rent a car, hit 'em all. Even the one down in Oriental. Then to a trip to FLa to see that cheaper one.
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Old 05-09-2011, 14:44   #14
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Re: How to determine boat value via internet (Valiant 42)

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Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
One question to ask yourself is:

"What could the owner possibly have added to the boat to make it worth 50% more than a new one, and could that addition possibly be worth that to YOU in your application."


<snip>

Jim
It could also be that someone in their life is after them to sell the boat..

So.. they say.... I am into it this much, so this is the 'sale' price.

And the price allows them to still keep the boat and sail it.. as opposed to selling it.....

I have seen this on a couple of boats....
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Old 05-09-2011, 14:54   #15
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Re: How to Determine Boat Value via Internet (Valiant 42) ?

or that the price has been arrived at simply by matching the finance owed (once you get into default / arrears the penalties and interest can really start to add up).

I would narrow it down to 2 or 3 candidates, get full details (and photos) and either visit yourself or engage a Surveyor for a preliminery inspection (should be cheaper than a full survey), basically to confirm she is as described and no obvious faults.

After that it is down to comparing specs and deciding what is important to you......and then it's off to Mr Google to compare prices with similar boats.
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