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Old 22-08-2012, 10:42   #1
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Buy A Boat Straight Out Of Charter - Why Not ?

Opening a hornet's nest here, I know.

5 Reasons against, in no order, and without thinking for more than 5 seconds:
1/. No decent spec means you'll need to upgrade all systems for 'proper' private cruising. Think batteries, tankage, electrics, generators, etc etc.
2/. Crap galley. No storage there, or generally.
3/. Tired, overworked systems and engines. Old boat design.
4/. Lots of dinks and cosmetic scratches.
5/. The charter-specialist builders just aren't as good in the first place.

But then, we all know that huge volumes of boats come through the charter market, and someone out there is buying them, right?? Come on now, have you got one? Five reasons, again, equally quickly:

1/. It's cheap. Often it's a forced sale meaning that even beyond the general tight pricing there are further discounts because some poor guy needs to finance a divorce, or a pony, or whatever.
2/. Bang for buck. You get a huge boat for your money.
3/. It's been maintained, by a professional. You'd hope.
4/. It's a proven design by now.
5/. It's available now, with all sorts of finance agreements, and there's lots of choice.

Come on then! Welcome all further comments!
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Old 22-08-2012, 11:53   #2
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re: Buy A Boat Straight Out Of Charter - Why Not ?

Been around the charter industry for many years, don't entirely agree with your list, but regardless....buying a boat out of charter is a bit of crap shoot. The biggest issue is how well was the boat maintained. Quite often the answer to this is "not so well".

I've had multiple friends buy boats out of charter. For about half of them it has worked out great (one who has an absolutely beautiful Beneteau 50 acquired at way below market value and no major problems). For the other half....not so good. Had friends who bought one a few years ago who went through an absolute nightmare. For them, any savings they realized from purchasing from the charter fleet was more than exceeded in repairs...and two years of their lives.

To try and minimize your risk, always get a good professional survey from someone who knows the model of boat your are planning to buy and who has no relationship with the charter company. Fly them in if you have to -- yes it is worth the cost in what it might save you.
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Old 22-08-2012, 16:17   #3
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re: Buy A Boat Straight Out Of Charter - Why Not ?

I agree with Belize. A good marine surveyor is an important part of the process.

I have been on privately owned yachts that after 5 years are in worst off shape than an ex-charter boat.

Like Belize said it all comes down to maintenance...
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Old 22-08-2012, 16:37   #4
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re: Buy A Boat Straight Out Of Charter - Why Not ?

As with all used boats it completely depends on the specific boat in question when balanced against the buyers wants and needs.

Not better, not worse. Just an option.
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Old 22-08-2012, 17:46   #5
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re: Buy A Boat Straight Out Of Charter - Why Not ?

A charter boat to carry more than 6 passengers is approved by the USCG. A manufactured boat requires extensive, expensive, time consuming hard and very frustrating work. The regulation book covers every aspect and part of the boat. Inspections are at least annual and more often if deemed necessary. The boat is modified to death. The railings alone are ridicules and ugly.
You can get a good price on a charter boat, if the licensed surveyor is thorough, competent and the boat still possesses It’s Certificate of inspection (COI). BTW, if the charter boat does not have a COI, just walk away. If you do buy it, first thing, just get rid of those ugly railings!
OK, for you novices that don’t know a boat is an ongoing maintenance project that will never be finished…Good luck…Love is a wondrous, most powerful and at times, a senseless human drive.
But sure worth it,
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Old 22-08-2012, 18:24   #6
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re: Buy A Boat Straight Out Of Charter - Why Not ?

I think he is referring to ex-bareboat charter boats... Not ex-day charter boats...



Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt.Fred View Post
A charter boat to carry more than 6 passengers is approved by the USCG. A manufactured boat requires extensive, expensive, time consuming hard and very frustrating work. The regulation book covers every aspect and part of the boat. Inspections are at least annual and more often if deemed necessary. The boat is modified to death. The railings alone are ridicules and ugly.
You can get a good price on a charter boat, if the licensed surveyor is thorough, competent and the boat still possesses It’s Certificate of inspection (COI). BTW, if the charter boat does not have a COI, just walk away. If you do buy it, first thing, just get rid of those ugly railings!
OK, for you novices that don’t know a boat is an ongoing maintenance project that will never be finished…Good luck…Love is a wondrous, most powerful and at times, a senseless human drive.
But sure worth it,
Capt.Fred
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Old 22-08-2012, 18:27   #7
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re: Buy A Boat Straight Out Of Charter - Why Not ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt.Fred View Post
A charter boat to carry more than 6 passengers is approved by the USCG. ......
Capt.Fred
Fred, you may be thinking of a different category of "charter boat". My assumption was that the OP was referring to mid-sized sailing vessels in charter management. For example, managed by the Moorings etc. These boats are not USCG inspected vessels.
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Old 22-08-2012, 20:25   #8
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re: Buy A Boat Straight Out Of Charter - Why Not ?

I think the forum has already answered, but I second the notion that charter boats, at least from big fleets, are tried and true models. Also they have lots of support. Like I said in another forum about buying a production cat vs. a one-off design, here's a simple question. If you have a hundred grand to buy a really nice sports car, do you buy a Porche, or do you buy a Caparo (yes it's a real brand, and pretty cool). The point is that production boats have a huge amount of support by the producer as well as thousands of people who have already done everything you think you may want to do with them. Just read any of the Mahe 36 threads and you'll know what I mean. Also, keep in mind that the Moorings will be dumping a lot of cats of the same age and caliber at the same time, which helps this already positive buyer's market. A good one-owner boat can be nice, well maintained and well outfitted, if the price is right, but many of the prices I've seen are absurd. They talk a lot about all the stuff they have, then ask to get all the money back they put in it for radar, water makers, generators, etc. For 20 or 30 or 50 grand less on the purchase price of a charter boat, you can buy all the gadgets you want and they'll be brand-spanking new.
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Old 22-08-2012, 20:55   #9
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re: Buy A Boat Straight Out Of Charter - Why Not ?

Speaking as the owner of an ex charter cat it can be a very positive and rewarding experience.
Not all charter companies are the same and I think it was very lucky to deal with a very honest and reputable company.
They also owned and maintained the boat which appeared to have been written down in what seems to be a very generous tax depreciation scheme run by the French government.
There is no doubt that the boats do get a harder life than most private boats but at a cost saving of about 20% I am very happy with my purchase.
The complaints about my boat are related to the manufacturer and have no connection to the vendor.
I would have no hesitation in recommending a boat from Corail Caribies.

I did see some pretty smashed up charter boats from some of the other companies so obviously not all are the same.
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Old 23-08-2012, 02:55   #10
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re: Buy A Boat Straight Out Of Charter - Why Not ?

I echo Dragon Lady's comment. The most important thing is the quality of charter company maintenance. There are good and bad charter companies as there are good and bad private owners. A lot of charter companies in Croatia employ their staff on a seasonal basis and they can be rough and ready in the rush to get the boats ready at the start of the season. Our charter company employs full time staff who know each boat intimately and have a vested interest in minimum problems during the season. So its important to dig into the charter company as much as the boat.

The other factor is the type of clients the charter company recruits. I suggest that you avoid the ones largely frequented by young stag/hen parties. Ideally you want charter companies who have a high percentage of repeat customers.

True, charter boats can and should do a lot of work, but like cars, they will last more hours if regularly used and serviced than if lightly used. Most private boats in my opinion are under used and don't last as many hours use as they should, and if they are used hard then they differ little from charter boats.

Charter boats will tend to have gear that is simple, reliable or at least readily available and affordable to replace. They may not have the bells and whistles that some loving owner will load on to his pride and joy but you can use the difference in purchase price to put on your choice of goodies.

Get a really good surveyor for the boat and a marine engineer to check over the machinery and I don't think you can go far wrong
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Old 23-08-2012, 04:11   #11
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Re: Buy A Boat Straight Out Of Charter - Why Not ?

Yeah the manager even said goodbye to our boat with a tear in his eye when we left with her.
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