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Old 14-02-2013, 14:23   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 115
Questions about buying a sailboat in Bahamas

Can someone advise me on what actual costs are involved when one purchases a 25 ft sailboat in the Bahamas and wants to bring it into the USA?

The boat is foreign owned (UK) and registered (UK), and has paid 'Bahamas Importation Fees I've been told.

Should I just keep it in the Bahamas since the 'Importation Fee' has been paid? Is this good for the life of the boat?, or does each new owner have to pay the 'Importation Fee'? Does it change hands with the boat's title?

I'm tempted to leave the boat there and register it in the Bahamas (is this possible for a non-resident?) I figured I want to go over and sail there anyway in the Fall of this year.

What are the costs to ship it on it's trailer over to Florida? Or would I be better off selling the trailer in the Bahamas, and having the boat sailed over on it's own?

What Taxes are due on the purchase? Are taxes due to the Bahamas or USA for my purchase price?

What are the Customs Duties for importing a $20k/ 25 ft sailboat?

Is this something that boat brokers handle regularly? At a fair rate? If I buy the boat sight unseen, except for the surveyor's remarks; is this normally handled with an 'escrow account' for the buying and selling parties, until the transaction is completed satisfactorily for the buyer (me)?

I'm thinking I need to be assured there are no boatyard/marina liens, unpaid bills due workmen, all paperwork/titles clear.

Essentially I've never bought a boat outside of the USA to bring in and want to know from someone who's gone through the experience. I want to know the upfront costs as clearly as possible before I buy it so I don't end up 'buying the boat twice'.

Thanks...been lurking/reading this forum for years and enjoy it every chance I get.
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Bahamas, buying, sailboat

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