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Old 14-08-2008, 21:42   #1
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Seller wants cash?

Hi,
This is new water for us. My husband I have found a boat we are interested in purchasing, we've done sea trials, and have agreed on a price and partial owner financing and survey is scheduled for next week. The sellers have just asked that we bring the down payment in cash.....not cashier's or certified check, not wired to a bank account, but a big old bag of cash.

My initial reaction is that I am very uncomfortable with this. Am I just beign paranoid, or does this all seem a little suspect? Please help.....

Thanks.
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Old 14-08-2008, 21:58   #2
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Don't do it. Is the boat a USCG documented boat? If so has the CG do an abstract title search.
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Old 14-08-2008, 21:58   #3
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I'd escrow a big ol bag of cash until the final survey.
Is there no broker involved?
I won't do any large transaction without an attorney PERIOD!
Are they Nigerian?
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Old 14-08-2008, 22:26   #4
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Ha. No, they are not nigerian....norther california hippies...not sure if that's better or worse. I hadn't thought about using an attorney to escrow....
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Old 15-08-2008, 00:49   #5
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You can escrow with a bank. If it is a big amount of money consider the lawyer.

There are check scams now with Cashier's Checks and Bank checks (what a world). Escrow protects everyone.

I wouldn't be running around with cash.

I just noticed that it's the downpayment they want in cash. Hmmm. Different motives - Hard to get cash back. Easy to stop a check.

Escrow still makes everyone comfy but you have to specify on what terms the Escrow is closed and who gets what depending on what happens.

I have a purchase agreement that we used that specified how it all works. Your welcome to a copy if you PM me an email address. You should still get a lawyer to look at it. At least it summarizes the things to think about.
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Old 15-08-2008, 14:53   #6
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I would not do this... no paper trail. I can't think of any valid reason why someone would not accept a cashiere's check. They can call the bank listed on the check and verify funds at exchange time.
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Old 15-08-2008, 16:41   #7
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I did this with one of my boats and everything went fine, but I suspect the money exchanged was a significantly more modest sum than your situation.
If you are doing an owner finance, I would think its imperitive that you trust the owners if you are to go through on the deal. In my case, the owner held the title until the boat was paid in full, so there was alot of trust on both sides of the transaction.
As to carrying a large amount of cash, I would simply tell them I was uncomfortable and have an appointment set up at a bank where they could receive the funds in cash.
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Old 15-08-2008, 17:16   #8
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Are you talking about $50,000 in cash for a 36 foot boat? Or two thousand dollars in cash for a daysailer?

Are you to be given a title and registration, or a pig in a poke?

Sometimes, cash is legal and understandable.
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Old 15-08-2008, 17:16   #9
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Norhtern CA hippies. How did they make their money? What is the highest producing cash crop in Northern Cal. Pot. Perhaps these people want to fly below the radar. Any unusual bank deposits can be halted by the dept of Homeland Security. I am trying to find a link to the article I read about money used to payoff a credit card was being held by the bank at the behest of DHLS b/c it might have been terrorist funds.

I would think a lawyer would be the best way to handle this if you are comfortable with dealing with them. They are holding a note on the boat so you might have to stretch your comfort zone to make it work.
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Old 15-08-2008, 17:17   #10
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California is a very easy state to commit fraud when it comes to vehicles. If the vessel is Documented, that will provide some protection, but you need to make sure you are comfortable. Remember, they want to sell you the boat as much as you want to buy it. I can understand some reasons why they may not want a paper trail, but among those reasons are to avoid having the money taken away due to a lien or judgment. This same lien could easily be applied to the boat, and it will transfer with the boat. In that case, you lose.
To give you an idea of the risk, in California, you can steal a boat from someone with nothing more than a copy of the registration. I will not elaborate, but I can tell you that it can be done, and it takes an expensive legal process to get the boat back even if you find it.
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Old 15-08-2008, 18:06   #11
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No, don't do it. The reason they want cash is that they are trying to hide something or rip you off. I would never have a business dealing with someone who is not on the up and up. Look for a different boat to purchase.
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Old 15-08-2008, 18:22   #12
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Delete that boat from your list no matter how nice it may be you are getting yourself into rough waters.
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Old 15-08-2008, 20:23   #13
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Escrow is the only way to go. Boat deals can get ugly. Little things happen and the money in escrow gives both sides the time to breath and do the right thing without fear. Someone gets spooked and really bad stuff happens.
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Old 15-08-2008, 21:37   #14
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Good Day Mr. Al Mostthere,

I am Barrister Ongobongo Mbaban I have a lovely sailing vessel for you to consider. It is a 52 meter Canardley-Floats Designed Schooner. Please forard your cash to me in a mayonaise jar to Po: Box.........Lagos, Nigeria
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Old 16-08-2008, 15:15   #15
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Chief! Thats too funny!
Almost There. Is CA a title state? Was the boat registered? Something smells funny.
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