If you're a first time boat buyer, hire a marine surveyor
the boat before you make the purchase
. Your deposit should be refundable if you find something you don't like and want to back out of the deal.
If she is on the hard
, leave a portion of the purchase price
in escrow to pay for problems discovered during the sea trials after the purchase .
When we purchased a boat we submitted a standard purchase a sales agreement from the yacht brokers association of america along with the deposit. After the boat was surveyed, we signed an "Acceptance of vessel" form and received a bill of sale
from the previous owner.