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Old 26-06-2015, 19:27   #1
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Selling question

Have any of you guys sold a boat to a person in another state? Meaning that the selling transaction occurs while you and the buyer are in two different states. If so, what was the process?

Thank you!!!


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Old 26-06-2015, 19:34   #2
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Re: Selling question

The process doesn't really change. The buyer hands over the money, the seller hands over the boat and the title. The buyer may also have to fill out some paperwork declaring/proving that the boat is in a different state, so they don't owe any sales tax in the seller's state, if that is applicable.

One caveat is that it is becoming a common scam to send a cashiers check (or paypal payment) and a third party to pick up the boat. When I bought a boat unseen, I hired a surveyor to go buy and confirm that the boat seemed in like new condition (it was a dealer's boat show model), wired them the money, and arranged to have a shipper bring it to me. Now that I am selling the same boat, I am not sure I that would accept a similar arrangement, because so many scammers have already contacted me.
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Old 26-06-2015, 19:57   #3
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Re: Selling question

Yes I have. Broker.
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Old 26-06-2015, 19:59   #4
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Re: Selling question

I haven't sold my personal boat to someone in another state but I bought my last two boats out of state and when I was a yacht broker in FL handled deals between buyers and sellers from all parts of the US and overseas.

Basically what Greenhand said. The specifics will vary a bit from state to state if the boat is titled or will be a bit different if it is USCG documented. Some states have titles and you endorse the back of the title to the buyer. Other states the seller just signs a bill of sale. Doesn't matter if the buyer is from out of state or not. Most states it is then the responsibility of the buyer to pay the sales tax or prove exemption, get new registration, etc.

If the boat is documented then similar process, you sign over the documentation to the buyer. If the buyer is not a US citizen then a little more complicated as the boat has to be taken out of documentation.
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Old 27-06-2015, 09:28   #5
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Re: Selling question

Another way is to hire a marine documentation person. I sold a boat while in the Caribe once. In fact both the buyer and me were out of the US (but US citizens) the Document person handled the whole paper work and it was a lot cheaper than a broker. Less than $500. It was someone named Shirley xxxx in Florida.
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Old 28-06-2015, 08:13   #6
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Re: Selling question

It's property just like a car. So bill of sale...maybe notorized, title if there is one, and if the boat is coast guard registered then use their form, it's on their Web site. The buyer should check the state laws for where they intend to keep the boat as that state may want sales tax, property tax, or/and a use tax!

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Old 28-06-2015, 08:40   #7
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Re: Selling question

Is the boat registered with the state or just documented? Do you have a title for the boat?
If its registered this is the wrong place to get your answers. Your state will tell you exactly what you need to document change of ownership.
If you regularly get a tax bill from your state or city you need to make sure you properly document change of ownership or you will continue to get billed and be forced to track down the new owner and do the proper paperwork after the fact. Things will be much more difficult then.

If you can meet at a notary and have the bill of sale notarized with the new owners full name and full address you will be covered for tax purposes.

I have been through this several times. In the past three years I sold our entire family fleet of day sailers, dinghy and large boat. The inflatable sold separately, it was titled and the bill of sale did not have the new owners address. It turned into a drill where the new owner had to send me a notarized new bill of sale. Kind of a pain.
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Old 30-06-2015, 20:19   #8
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Re: Selling question

Thank you everyone for the response!! Sorry it took me so long to reply. I was curious about this process because we have someone interested and even created a gofundme account for the boat. Im a little bit nervous about the idea of doing it without us meeting and the fact that it just seems strange to me. Haha Since I never went through a process like this I'd like to get points from others to make sure we wouldn't end up in a mess!


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