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Old 24-04-2008, 21:06   #16
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Another Tellie rant,
Yeah I'm sorry but it is more the rule than the exception. I went through four brokers practically begging them to sell me a boat. I met one at the Miami strickly sail who had a booth selling mainly Valiants which where on top of my list at the time. I spent at least an hour with him there looking through his book of boats he had for sale. Man was he full of promises of what great fun we were going to have putting me in the right boat on and on and on. Gave him all the contact info, a month and a half later I called him asking if he forgot me. "Oh no" he said "I've been real busy, but lets get together to see some boats" Great says I. A month later I called again "Hey Stu, it's Tellie" "Oh my hard drive crashed and I lost your info glad you called" Me "Gonna show me some boats?" Stu "yeah right away, Boy are we gonna have fun" OK I'm looking forward to it. So Stu shows up two weeks later, my wife and I follow him around Ft.Lauderdale to look at a 38' Morgan and 28' beat up Hylas. Then says 'What do ya think? Are you interested in making an offer?" I says "I thought we were going to look at Valiants" You know that deer in the head light look? Stu had it. He says "Wait we can look at one more" So off we go, next thing I know we're standing on the deck of a Liberty 485, which I actually kinda liked. My wife is giving me that look that wives get when their husbands don't tell somebody to jump off. But ever the gentleman that I am <grin> I invite him to dinner on us to maybe get a few things straight. "Oh no gotta run, I'll take you up on your offer next time we get together in a few days" A month later, no Stu. My wife says if you call that idiot again she's gonna leave me for being such a wuss.
They way I see it I was a cash buyer looking for a boat in the 40 to 48 foot range and I couldn't get four brokers to give me anything other than the same look I get from my teen aged daughter when I tell her I might even know a thing or two. Why is it if I were to walk into a Farrari dealership cash in hand and ask to see a few cars in the 200-400k range they'd roll out the red carpet, fancy water I can't pronounce the name of, champagne for the wife and tickets to the super bowl on the fifty yard line. But walk into a boat brokers office and you're made to feel unworthy to step on their Holy ground.
But two years later I did meet a young kid Mike Carlson who worked his butt off for us and really did give us great service. I spent less than half of what I was willing to and never felt pressured to do anything. Even long after the sale I could call him for anything I needed and he still gave great service. Thanks Mike.
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Old 24-04-2008, 21:13   #17
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Brokers... UGH. Here's the long and short of it:

I've been told that it takes 100 lookers, on average, to sell a boat.

The brokers have their business DESIGNED so that they don't even have to sell a boat, to make ends meet/make money:

They get a discount on slips, and the seller pays full price.

The boats have to be cleaned on a regular basis - usually a couple of times a month, at the seller's expense (to the broker, who makes money on this...)

The bottoms have to be cleaned as much as once a month, same as above.

When something happens to the boat that needs to be repaired, many/most times the broker arranges and bills for the repairs... and makes money.

IF they happen to sell a boat, it's a bonus
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Old 24-04-2008, 21:15   #18
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By the way, I've heard of sellers, out of state, being billed for the above, and then find their boat dirty and grown to the bottom, on a surprise visit!
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Old 24-04-2008, 21:29   #19
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I should have known those bilge rats had an angle. I wonder if they aren't set up like real estate offices where the actual broker gets that cut and the salesman does all the real work. Sounds like in real estate it's better to get a new young under paid salesman to work for you so you can mold him the way you want.
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Old 24-04-2008, 21:30   #20
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To come to the defense of brokers....don't even bother to look for a boat until
you have your finances/financing in order.
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Old 25-04-2008, 03:33   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pelagic View Post

That way, you don’t waste anybodies time.
Apart from your own........

As part of "the buying experiance" I am not someone who wants the seller / salesman to kiss my butt, however I do require some effort being put in.......and being treated with courtesy.

Having said that, tyrekickers must be a big problem - but other industries seem to be able to cope........
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Old 25-04-2008, 14:47   #22
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Todays tyrekicker could be next years buyer, treat him bad now you wont see him next year
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Old 25-04-2008, 14:55   #23
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come on down to Florida .. plenty of boats and plenty of good brokers that are interested in selling them.
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Old 25-04-2008, 15:44   #24
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Some sales people are good and some aren't worth your time. I'm sure there are good honest brokers out there just as there are skunks.

I know when we made the offer on our current boat the broker called another party to start a bidding war. Didn't work but I don't really blame the broker, he was trying to make more money for himself and the seller, that's just business. I found out about the call when I met the other potential buyer at the marina we used for winter storage. Funny, he wanted to buy the boat from us since we had completed all the work to bring the boat back to as new condition. This is the only boat we have ever owned that people call us to buy it unsolicited.
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Old 25-04-2008, 17:43   #25
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In Oz most of the brokers seem to be untrained yachties who need cash--and being a broker gets them some now and then. Most are very unimpressive.

There are some few who really go the extra mile for you and earn their money from the vendor--and actually know what their stock situation is, having visited all of it. That is pretty rare--most have no clue other than a cursory shufti.

Then there are the dishonest ones--who keep buyers well away from the boat they want to buy keep and/or resell themselves. The usual ploy is to ignore all requests for an inspection, tell you it is under contract, there has been a holding deposit, we will let you know etc etc.

Later you meet the ex-owner and discover how he was conned--it is not such a big world once you limit it to boat owners and buyers--

Then there are the other co-conspiritors in the art of the con--the rare but present crook marine surveyor who gives a clean bill of heath to a vessel full of dry rot or spray paint over serious corrosion hidden under rust scale.

Wouldn't it be nice if people were honest and competent? That should be the absolute minimum on offer--Unfortunately not all of us are lucky enough to receive it.
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Old 25-04-2008, 19:48   #26
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Quote:
Are all boat brokers lousy or am I just having bad luck?
Boat brokers are like real estate sales people. The two jobs require the same amount of effort. What is true and has been true for a very long time is 20% of the brokers sell 80% of the boats. It's just a job. If you think it's not then you can't sell boats. You work hard or you pretend to work hard. It's a very easy job if you don't sell many boats.

So by the numbers most boats brokers are like you suggest but they don't sell many boats either. I think it's pretty easy to tell the good ones from the bad. OK, so you ran into a few bad brokers. It's not like you gave them any money. Sometimes you just move on and say good bye. The boat sales business is full of wanna be boat owners that take up a lot of your time and never buy. To get attention you need to act serious. Sometimes it's not enough.
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Old 25-04-2008, 21:09   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pelagic View Post
I think to be fair to brokers they get a lot of tire kickers, dreamers, guys trying to impress their girlfriends and generally a lot people out there, who waste their time.

On top of that, if you are a tough experienced buyer they will know that their commission often become the first casualty of a serious negotiation.

I think a “buyer's” broker prefers to find inexperienced clients that they can guide towards a purchase that maximises their profit instead of researching for the perfect boat for a knowledgeable sailor.

I recommend writing up a very detailed owner’s brief of what you are looking for and “why”.

Send that out to every established brokerage house and wait to see if it gets a good hit from someone who feels they have found a possible match.

That way, you don’t waste anybodies time.
Pelagic,
That is an excellent idea. I will probably take that approach when the time comes for my wife and I to buy a boat. If a broker responds, I know he is serous and is listing a boat that fits our criteria. I think your method pretty much insures that we are not wasting each others time. Thanks!

David


I don't think blanket labeling yacht brokers is very accurate. Like all people, brokers come in all personalities. Its really the buyers responsibility to find a broker that works with his personality.
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Old 25-04-2008, 21:49   #28
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We're looking in LA and San Fran for now.
If you're in SF see Don Wilson that works at Tartan and CC on Alameda. He's been selling boats in the area for 30 years, and most everyone knows him. His email address is dwilson@tccsf.com

He was the seller's broker for the boat we bought, through our broker (Dorthy Allen) at Southern California Yacht Sales in San Diego..she is good too. After the sale we got to know each other while I was having the boat readied for the trip south to San Diego, and he was always very helpful to us, and knew all the good contractors to have work done on our boat.
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Old 25-04-2008, 21:52   #29
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I think that's standard operating procedure for some of them. I've had a boat under contract for two weeks, had it hauled and surveyed, and transferred the money for the sale with closing tomorrow. And guess what? It's still for sale on Yachtworld!!

I have to say though, my experience with a buyers broker has been positive. If you can find one of the good ones it's a huge asset. She did a lot of legwork for us, calling brokers and setting up appointments, going with us to look at the boats, forcing the brokers to be honest about the condition before we drove to see it, etc. She knows the reputations of the other brokers, the surveyors, the locations of all the marinas, and was a help in negotiations. If you can find a good one that will be on your side it can make the process a lot smoother. Still not as much fun as it should be, but a help.
I had the same good experience with our buyer's broker too. Getting a buyer's broker is a good idea, one fo the better ideas I had.
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Old 26-04-2008, 02:55   #30
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Several years ago, I contacted Beaufort Yacht Sales* seeking information about a used “Caliber 40” they had listed.
I received a large package of information, by return post, and a follow-up phone call within a week or so.
Since then, I receive regular (twice yearly?) packages of info’, and a personal phone call every year (near the anniversary of our first contact).
The broker is diligent, friendly & polite, and knowledgeable.
I wish I could remember his name (might be David Cavett), which I would gladly post with my enthusiastic recommendation.

* FWIW:
Beaufort Yacht Sales
300 Front Street
Beaufort, NC 28516, USA
Toll-free: 877-269-3022
Tel: 252-728-3155
Fax: 252-728-6715
Web: Beaufort Yacht Sales (Beaufort, NC)
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