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Old 19-01-2013, 08:42   #16
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Re: Recourse for surveyor mis-stating condition?

A broken mount is not serviceable, it requires replacement or else the engine is unrestrained and normal operation can damage the entire shaft and shaft log as it whips around.

One broken mount also raises questions, i.e. did it simply break from age? Or is there another problem?

And having said that, engine mounts, belts, hoses, all rubber parts are supposed to be replaced after 5 years. Engine mounts never are, so if that one simply failed from age, it indicates that ALL the engine mounts are due for replacement and that's a more expensive job, requiring the shaft alignment to be checked again afterwards as well.

Serviceable? I'd disagree and say the surveyor should have caught that and warned that it means all new mounts and alignment. I'd send the surveyor a letter, politely requesting that, and if he says no, just take it to small claims court, along with an estimate from a shop for doing the job.

IF the surveyor had caught this and stated it, odds are it might have knocked some money off the purchase price to have the work done. Depending on the brand and local labor? Could be thousand dollars. If the surveyor offered to split the cost, I'd settle for that. If he offered it up front, not in court.
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Old 19-01-2013, 09:15   #17
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Thanks for all the advice. This is my first boat so I appreciate having this forum and all you smart folks out there to help me set my expectations in situations like this. I feel the surveyor should have spotted the problem; it was visible to the naked eye but required more than a cursory glance with a flashlight. Nevertheless, I want to start my boating karma account in the positive so I've decided to take mcarling's suggestion and just bring it to his attention with no demands or expectations. Actually, I feel I've already come out a bit ahead because I thought the repair would be thousands of $. And yes, I sail near Annapolis where they put the word "marine" in front of everything and double the price. Example: 40x16 slip costs $6k/yr or more. Further south where it's "only" $4500/yr. Ahh the things we do for the sport.
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Old 19-01-2013, 09:19   #18
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Re: Recourse for surveyor mis-stating condition?

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
A broken mount is not serviceable, it requires replacement or else the engine is unrestrained and normal operation can damage the entire shaft and shaft log as it whips around.
The surveyor didn't say the mount was servicable, he said it appeared to be servicable.

I use this same language in the "Comments" section of my invoices where I briefly describe the condition of the bottom paint, running gear, thru-hulls, transducers etc. I say, "The thru-hulls and transducers appear sound." That means from my perspective and without an in-depth inspection, they appear to be OK. That is not any kind of guarantee that there is not a hidden problem that I am unable to determine exists.

The bottom line as I see it, if knowing there was a broken motor mount would have been a deal breaker for the OP, he has a real reason to persue the surveyor. Otherwise, it's a pretty minor fix as far as boat expenditures go and he should just eat it and move on, as most here have stated.
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Old 19-01-2013, 09:20   #19
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Re: Recourse for surveyor mis-stating condition?

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Originally Posted by FruiVita View Post
I want to start my boating karma account in the positive so I've decided to take mcarling's suggestion and just bring it to his attention with no demands or expectations.
Please let us know how it works out.
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Old 19-01-2013, 09:54   #20
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Re: Recourse for surveyor mis-stating condition?

Quote:
Originally Posted by fstbttms View Post
The surveyor didn't say the mount was servicable, he said it appeared to be servicable.

I use this same language in the "Comments" section of my invoices where I briefly describe the condition of the bottom paint, running gear, thru-hulls, transducers etc. I say, "The thru-hulls and transducers appear sound." That means from my perspective and without an in-depth inspection, they appear to be OK. That is not any kind of guarantee that there is not a hidden problem that I am unable to determine exists...
I used similar language in my construction inspection reports.

... Noted deficiencies:
1.
2.
Etc.
“Excepting the foregoing, no further deficiencies observed”
E. & O. E.
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Old 19-01-2013, 10:07   #21
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Re: Recourse for surveyor mis-stating condition?

A good point, fst, but a surveyor is not paid to comment on aesthetics and appearances, he's paid to SURVEY the boat. Broke is broke, it usually means a crack or motion that is not present on a normal mount. If he just looks at it (oh that engine space is dirty, I'm not going to stick my head in there) and can't really tell, then he should be saying "Engine mounts appear serviceable with no gross visible failures, but the engine was not run and the mounts not inspected during use."

You know, same as the engine. "Looks good, but I didn't run it and don't know if it really works." If the mere appearance of something has no real bearing on whether it will be an issue, why bother to mention it?

If I ask a mechanic to look over a used car I'm buying, any competent one will check the motor mounts. Same same. Not blow a kiss at them--but check them. Stick a hand on them and shake them, if need be. Ain't that hard to check a thousand-dollar item by wiggling it.
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Old 29-01-2013, 12:04   #22
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Re: Recourse for surveyor mis-stating condition?

Many surveyors exclude engines. Did this one?
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Old 29-01-2013, 12:29   #23
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Short but funny / bad experience with a marine surveyor in Florida One mr. Scott G, when i asked did he feel i should get an engine surveyor he told he does all the same stuff an engine surveyor would and it would be a waste of money. All he did was shoot the tranny and eng temps and note it needed alignment on one. Then in the survey he reported recc an engine surveyor as engines not covered under his survey. He also inspected upper rigging only via a pair of the binoculars and never reported the lower rigging. When i questioned him on this he responded " i thought you had looked at it. " Idiot...
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Old 29-01-2013, 12:37   #24
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I think you can mount a formal complaint with the SAMS www.marinesurvey.org/ of he/she is a member.

Ideally, I don't think you have any "recourse" but you can blemish his credentials so it never happens again and he improves his process/methodology.

IMHO: Without a 'Yelp' or epinions (some form of reputation management) for the Surveyor community, it's up to the mistreated parties to be proactive and log a formal complaint.

My 2 cents
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Old 29-01-2013, 14:45   #25
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"Many surveyors exclude engines. Did this one?"

Yes and no. His report states that he does not survey engines. However, same report clearly states "engine mounts appear serviceable" but at least one mount - the one most clearly visible during the survey - is busted.

Anyway, I contacted him and let him know he missed that but he did not admit any error or offer an apology. If he is smart he won't ask for a reference.
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Old 29-01-2013, 14:52   #26
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Re: Recourse for surveyor mis-stating condition?

A surveyor could cover his A** by spending days inspecting your boat and charge you accordingly. You cant expect them to find everything. Did he go on sea trial with you? Most surveyors exclude "hidden damage" and only really note general condition of the engine. Otherwise you also need an engine survey.
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Old 29-01-2013, 14:53   #27
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Re: Recourse for surveyor mis-stating condition?

I've said it many times but I'll say it again here: if you can't do the survey yourself then you shouldn't consider buying an older recreational boat of any kind. Recreational surveys are a complete waste of time and money. If your insurance company requires one then there's not much way out of it but know that you are p'ing your money away.
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Old 29-01-2013, 14:54   #28
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Re: Recourse for surveyor mis-stating condition?

I bought a boat and paid for a seperate engine survey. They missed a broken engine mount. It showed up when I couldn't do a decent job aligning. It was frustrating --- it's a boat.
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