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Old 21-07-2003, 02:38   #1
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Question moving a boat for resale

I am a river guide/ wannabe sailor....My family was recently in Dominica and we met some Norwegians that bought a boat in Mallorca and were eventually going to return to Norway with it and resell it for a profit. Is this realistic? Is it realistically possible to buy a boat in an area that is abundant with boats or has a saturated market and then sail it to another place where it could fetch a greater price? I am not money-hungry, it's just an idea that I heard that makes sailing seem like something I could afford doing for awhile. Thanks for your time everyone...

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Old 22-07-2003, 00:04   #2
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Just my thoughts on the matter.

If you go out and buy any boat with the idea that you will sail it to some far away place you'll need to "fix it up" enough to sail. I mean you can't just hop in an unknown boat and sail off across the ocean without some work and probably some costs. Personally you will want a clean survey report and tend to all the details with your own life at stake here.

When you sell a boat you never get out what you put into it so you'll need to expect an extra healthy profit to cover the costs of the improvements so the vessle. You won't cross the Atlantic in an unsafe boat?

The world is a smaller place these days and the economics are such that the price you pay in one location is equalized in another. When the price difference is huge people in the boat business figure it out long before you can.

The perhaps most serious issue is delivering the boat to your new port with a clear title and documentation so it can be registred in a new country to a new owner. That process is exceptionally complex depending on the old and new country and requires special details be handled properly or the vessle won't be able to be registered. Just paying the money from the seller and a bill of sail is not always enough.

Boats are often brought into the US as XTAX boats and they have some ugly paperwork that has to be delt with to get the boats out of the current country and properly into the US. That porcess eats up a lot of the savings and carries some risks as well.

Paul Blais
s/v Bright Eyes Gozzard 36
37 15.7 N 76 28.9 W
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Old 22-07-2003, 11:29   #3
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I suspect that it can be done if you a really knowledgable enough to know the market value of a particular model in both the purchase and sale countries, are able to accurately assess its condition and the costs to make it right ideally having the skills to do the work yourself, and have enough financial leeway to cover the costs of importation (duties and taxes), Brokerage fees, upgrades to standards and the cost of crossing an ocean.

So much depends on the particular boat. You have to understand and ask yourself: Is this a model that is valued somewhere other than here? Is it capable of making a 'wrong way' trip? Why is it for sale so cheaply? What am I missing? What happens if the boat is damaged offshore? How will you pay for these boats as loans are pretty much non-existant on boats being sailed word wide.

I have sold most of my boats for more than I paid for them, and in most cases more than I had in them for repairs and maintenance but there have been boats that I expected to sell for more than I had in her and on which I did not do that well. I have known retireees who buy boats and fix them up as a way to make a little extra income. If you count their labor, they don't make a profit but they end up with a half way decent boat for a couple years and when they make a good choice in boats get paid something for their labor.

I guess in conclusion this is a high risk business that has few obvious benefits, but a lot of potential liabilities as a way to support yourself. Now then, if all that you want is a few sea miles then you might try this as a way to keep your costs down.

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Old 14-10-2003, 08:52   #4
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I think Paul and Jeff have just about covered it. The rest is specifics which are highly variable. Are you the type of person that finds real bargains all the time? Remember that there's more and more competition in this area. For me, having done this I agree with jeff that's it's a great way to get sea miles, and also the experience of different boats (my major motivating factor). To my mind the absolute essential is the locality your buying in (most will be selling back home) and networking there in order to find those bargains that will guarantee that the venture won't lose you money. After all boats that have high profile advertising etc will be expecting to get the market price in an expensive country. The other reason to be familiar with the target country and it's way's is so that you can get that essential safety work done and done cheaply there.
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Old 14-10-2003, 10:06   #5
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I don't know how true this is so take it with a grain of sea salt. I had fella tell me once that he had the same type of plan. Buy the boat in Hawaii as many people get the boat there and then discover that sailing over vast oceans was not quite what they had in mind.

Once purchased in Hawaii he was going to bring it back to the Mainland and subsequently sell it. I don't know if he ever actually did it.

But he had a dream.....
S/V AbbyGale
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Old 16-10-2003, 18:29   #6
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What I really like is waves sentiment to try and effect a healthy 'rich' experience without trawling for every last cent in a frenzy of paranoid defence against every possibility. As FZ once said ' the future is scary... death valley days straight ahead...' The necessary entaglement with the beaurocrats (that kindly look after our interests) is boring. The rewards of doing this, if you love sailing and adventure, are priceless. The knowledge you gain from a deep personal involvement with a variety of craft is difficult to get any other way, especially if you ain't no bread head, man. Moisture meters, x-ray machines etc. A best mate in every port who is luckily the local qualified surveyor, and his attractive sister who drives the crane up the slipway. where was I. All you really need to do is to find the good ones and know when you do. To find: pick a spot, talk to boat people, just ask them if they know of any fore sail.

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