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Old 22-04-2012, 07:48   #151
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Re: Bad Market - Good Negotiation Strategies ?

"Agreed upon selling price" is nothing more than the end of a discovery process to find out how much two parties each value something... which is entirely subjective.

When I'm selling a boat I am not in the least least offended to get a lowball offer... I'm happy to get the discussion started. In the conversation that follows we'll find out who values the boat more and at what final price. If I value the boat more than you do, you won't buy it. If you value the boat more than I do, you will buy it. But without the conversation, we can't discover what those values are.

So I'll set the asking price at a reasonable level, based on what I think the market realistically is at this moment. You come offer whatever you want. If what I really want is get out from under, you may end up with a bargain. If I'm not desperate, you can end up with a fairly priced boat, but not a bargain. But you'll never know what I want nor will I know what you want until we start the negotiation. Asking price and offers are starting places to get the discovery process started.
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Old 22-04-2012, 12:28   #152
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Re: Bad Market - Good Negotiation Strategies ?

Everyone assumes the normal negotiation goes something like this:
  • Boat is offered for sale at a price
  • Buyer makes offer
  • Seller agrees or makes counter offer
  • This can go back and forth a few times
  • Survey
  • Possible re-negotiation

In the past, I have sometimes shortcutted the buying process (not on boats, but vehicles, of which I have literally bought 1000's) by putting the onus on the seller. This does not always work, but I have got some tremendous great buys as a result.
  • Boat is offered for sale at a price
  • Look at boat, settle in your own mind what the top dollar is you are willing to pay for it, but do not advise seller.
  • Tell seller you are interested, but rather then bashing around to and froing on price, you want him/her to think about what is the best price they will accept. Today. Cash.
  • Also tell seller if it is not something you can accept, you walk (tell him/her in a nice way).
  • What happens next depends. Sometimes seller will surprise with a very low number. Hum and haw about it, but accept that deal. Sometimes seller will be close - I've walked, but either the seller would get back quickly, or I would call back in a few days suggesting something marginally lower.
  • Of course, this is also subject to survey and possible re-negotiation

Make sure you are realistic. Don't lose the good one by being stubborn, but as I said, this method has got me some wonderful buys, and the seller feels good.
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Old 22-04-2012, 13:30   #153
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Re: Bad Market - Good Negotiation Strategies ?

Well, I made an offer yesterday based on the following: The average listing price for seven boats of the same model, the average selling price for these same seven boats (supplied by the broker), the average percentage of sale price in regards to listing price.

In this case, the average listing price was about $80K for the seven boats. This included the highs and lows figured together. The average selling price was about $67.5K for these seven boats. That made the average sale price about 82% of asking.

I presented this information to the selling broker, telling him that the boat was over priced, which he agreed upon. Based on the information that he had provided me concerning recent sales of this model, I told him that a more realistic asking price would be $80K (actual asking price is $99K). So based on a realistic asking price of $80K, I offered $65K cash.

The broker hemmed and hawwed a bit and didn't like my figures. However, he agreed to present the offer. Since I do not have a buyer's broker he is acting as both, which is probably not ideal for me. He let an interesting piece of information slip as we were parting ways. After all his bluster about my offer not being realistic, he told me that my offer had a lot of evidence to support a low offer. He then proceded to tell me about three different yachts of varying length and price that were sold for a song, way below asking price.

I'm not sure what to make of that. Anyway, we left that meeting and conducted the sea-trial for the buyer of my boat. It went fine and I am now boatless. As a side note, my wife was less than impressed with the boat that we offered on, so I will probably stick to my original offer. Too few creature comforts for her cmmpared to the boat we just sold.

Anyway, this thread has been very helpful to me in seeing things from both sides (buyer and seller).

I'll keep you posted on how it goes.

Cheers, Bill
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Old 22-04-2012, 14:11   #154
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Re: Bad Market - Good Negotiation Strategies ?

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Originally Posted by montenido View Post
Okay, I'll weigh in. I just sold my Catalina 36 by owner for $52K. Pretty high for a C36, but she was really in bristol condition. Now, I have looked at LOTS of boats lately. I am thinking about making an offer on one that is listed for $99k. As has already been mentioned on this thread, it is not worth that in today's economy.

I have looked at this boat three times now, and will be bringing my wife to see it tomorrow. I told the listing broker that I am interested in making an offer, but that it will be well below the asking price. I gave reasons for this - needs new standing rigging, bottom job, has an older motor, etc. He said to bring him an offer. In fact, he has had the boat cleaned up just so my wife can see it in a tidy state.

It has been on the market for over 14 months with no offers. It is pretty close to what I am looking for - bluewater capable, roomy and safe. I am thinking about offering $65K cash.

Insult or savvy?

Thanks, Bill
I equipped your Catalina pretty well and came up with $33,820 ~$38,290 range, so yes, you did very well on the sale, if it was a recent sale. Tell me what you are looking at and I'll crunch some numbers.
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Old 22-04-2012, 14:21   #155
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Re: Bad Market - Good Negotiation Strategies ?

Thanks Bill for the updates on the buying process.
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Old 22-04-2012, 18:01   #156
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Re: Bad Market - Good Negotiation Strategies ?

Montenido,
Your profile lists you as boatless. Your signature says 1988 Catalina 36.
Did Wild Wind sell? Will you tell us what she sold for. If not, what is the number you will take to sell her. I probably already know since we have communicated recently, but one must be sure.
Congrats on sale if it happened. Good luck and happy sailing on your new boat.
Larry
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Old 22-04-2012, 18:32   #157
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Re: Bad Market - Good Negotiation Strategies ?

Larry,

Yes, Wild Wind is sold. I got $52K for her. I'll have to change my signature.

As an update on my offer, the owner replied, "No way, I won't even counter an offer like that". Thereby ensuring that he will be without a buyer for some time to come.

I told the agent to lay out my logic to the seller, but we all know the emotional attachment that we have to our boats...

Cheers, Bill

P.S. Told the agent to explain my logic and then shred the check and offer if the buyer was adamant.
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Old 22-04-2012, 18:45   #158
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You should get five of your friends to call the broker and make progressively lower offers. reset the sellers expectations and then go back with the original offer.
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Old 22-04-2012, 18:50   #159
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Re: Bad Market - Good Negotiation Strategies ?

Just wondering here, but you offered less than the average selling price for a boat that was listed higher than the average listing price? Was your boat of average condition or was it better than the average? If the seller is savy enough he may have realized that what he has is better than your average.

I think expecting to get the average discount is reasonable but all models aren't average and to use the average listing price may be a faulty assumption. If you had taken 82% of the $99K and arrived at $81 it would have made more sense to me. But then I don't know if this was an average condition model or above average.
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Old 22-04-2012, 19:48   #160
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Re: Bad Market - Good Negotiation Strategies ?

Hi all,

To answer some questions, the boat I offered on is in good shape for its age, but nothing special. I was going to have a mechanical survey, rigging survey, and the standard survey done to check everything. I really like the boat, even though it is old. My wife, on the other hand, was less than impressed, and would like something a bit more modern and comfortable .

So, I will be looking at other boats with more of the creature comforts, as well as bluewater capability. She does not mind paying more for this, so who am I to argue?


This is the boat in question,
1979 CSY center cockpit Sloop Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

Cheers, Bill
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Old 22-04-2012, 21:09   #161
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Re: Bad Market - Good Negotiation Strategies ?

Wow, nice boat! It's looks to be in better shape than most its age.
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Old 23-04-2012, 02:38   #162
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Re: Bad Market - Good Negotiation Strategies ?

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As an update on my offer, the owner replied, "No way, I won't even counter an offer like that".
Congrats! You have now acheived the status of Timewaster / Tyre-Kicker / Bottom Feeder - plus you have clearly insulted the Vendor .

To my mind, a good day . Nice touch on asking Broker to shred the cheque .

The good news is that didn't cost you any cash (only time) to acheive the result you got. Move on and let that boat remain the Vendors problem (or not). The caring either way stops now .

Just out of nosiness! - what did you list your boat for?, how long for sale?, how many viewings? / offers? IMO the best way to learn how to buy a boat is......to sell one! (obviously a bit of a chicken and egg situation in that!).
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Old 23-04-2012, 03:01   #163
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Re: Bad Market - Good Negotiation Strategies ?

On a general note, although not principally a negotiating "tactic" (although it does work that way ) when buying s/h I always ask up front "What's wrong / what needs fixing / will need fixing"....before getting my own eyes on, at least not properly.

I do however also make clear that am not expecting perfection as condition will be age related - that most things will not scare me off (excepting stuff like keel has fallen off ), just a matter of deciding what I can / want to deal with (individually and collectively) whether by self or by yard (or both).

Surprisingly(?!) most people don't lie when put on the spot (even if they would like to!). And those that do tend to get found out easily enough when getting hands on with the boat (which to me is a deal breaker). The "inbetweeners" will be vague, evasive or non-commital ("come and see for yourself" = "I know more than I will admit, just hoping a buyer doesn't spot stuff")....which IMO tells it's own story. Won't say that is always a deal breaker from the getgo, just a large red flag - smelling of BS .

The upside for me is that I can decide in advance whether or not a boat is worth a looksee, can do a bit of pre-visit costings (at least ballpark) and when onboard already have an idea what the fix(es) are - which also means I can sound like I know WTF I am talking about! Also gives a good indication as to how much the Vendor knows about the boat (which says a lot about their approach to maintanence).

For a Vendor it means I can price up a ballpark offer initially (and even before a visit) and then (if still interested) a firm offer that already includes things that a Survey will reveal, so no post survey haggling over anything already disclosed. Downside is that my offer may not be what they hoped for - upside is that if they accept, then likely the deal will get done at that price and also fairly quickly.
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Old 23-04-2012, 04:02   #164
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Re: Bad Market - Good Negotiation Strategies ?

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Frank, have you used agents for this in Aus before ? if so can you recommend one ?.....

Cheers
Johnno...

OP: Apologies i don't mean to hijack your thread....
Just on this point - see Personal Property Register Australia only
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Old 23-04-2012, 04:25   #165
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Re: Bad Market - Good Negotiation Strategies ?

Okay probably will regret this but bought my boat three years ago. complete newbie. Did search on internet looked at a few boats, all trash. Finally found In Island Packet 38 in bristol condition asking 120,000 bought it for 85,000. could I have done better.I didn't dicker or anything, the broker said he would take nothing less than 85,000 so I was tired of seeing junk and offered what he asked. I sometimes thinkI could have done better now that three years later I udnerstand boats a bit more but sometimes you pass by a boat looking of rthe perfect bargain and you end up always looking.
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