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Old 17-02-2010, 08:19   #16
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As others have already said, you paid for the survey and it's yours to do with as you wish. Neither the agent you dealt with nor the owner of the vessel you were considering are entitled to even read it without your consent. If your surveyor provides them with a copy, I would be shocked. If you do, then you have made another mistake.

As Intentional Drifter wrote, handle this in a businesslike fashion: Pay the surveyor for his time and the survey he produced for you, either written or digital, inform the agent's broker of your profound disappointment with his agent, inform the state of Florida about the agent and, if you still want to buy a boat, find a reputable agent to work only on your behalf. Just because you find a boat on your own that you become emotionally attached to, you are not obligated to select the listing broker as your representative - in fact, that's a very bad idea.

I'm a bit surprised that someone who seems to not have much experience at purchasing a boat would start with a 48' vessel. That is a handful for even a very experienced sailor. I know it's always easy to see oneself sipping Sundowners in the cockpit and entertaining friends and family aboard a big vessel, but the associated costs of maintenance, insurance, dockage, etc. rise exponentially as the vessels one considers buying increase in size.

Whatever the monetary cost has been, consider it your tuition in this school-of-hard-knocks course in Boat-Buying 101. It can only get better after this.

"Your vision becomes clear only when you look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks within, awakens."
Carl Gustav Jung (1875-1961)
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Old 22-02-2010, 19:06   #17
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The whole point of getting a marine survey is to help you, the buyer, make an informed decision as to whether to go through with the deal. Years ago, I was purchasing a C&C 36 and halfway through the survey, the surveyor started suggesting that maybe this was not the boat for me (it had a wet core). We bailed and went to choice #2, a C&C 34, which passed the survey with flying colors. My surveyor did not charge me much for the first half-done survey, and even if she had, it would have been money well spent to avoid buying a lemon.

Your survey is usually almost worthless to the next buyer if they want to insure the boat, since most insurance underwriters will require that the survey be performed on the behalf of the buyer, not a previous buyer or a broker. So they'll have to get a new one anyway. I suppose the broker could use it as a sales tool to try to talk a prospective buyer into buying the boat without getting a new survey, but that would be foolhardy of buyer #2.
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Old 22-02-2010, 20:03   #18
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In both the surveys I hired, the surveyor was clear that we would go so far and we would stop and talk. Usually, that is half way to lunch time if you start early. They encouraged me to watch and they showed me little things that would not be in the report. Those come in handy if you actually buy the boat. The idea is when things look bad they don't usually get better. There are show stopper issues. If you suddenly see a lot of things that need to be done then you can't expect some seller that didn't think enough to do it in the first place to do it all perfect now.

The boat is as it is and aside from things you can negotiate I expect to deal with them myself so I will know they are done right. At some point the boat will be more trouble than it is worth and then you walk away by terminating the agreement. Complaints that the boat was not as advertised are pointless when you won't buy the boat. A stupid broker is not the issue nor your problem.

Nothing a broker says has to be taken as important. The broker never signs an agreement with you. You need to prove information for yourself. All purchase agreements allow you to bail for any reason you care to and you don't have to say why or prove your misgivings. So long as you don't stall or attempt to hinder the process deliberately you are in good faith. You are obligated to pursue to the conclusion of the contract. You either buy or you don't. Good brokers know how to help the process work. I've been aided in both boat purchases. A deal delayed is prone to going off the tracks. Such is the way of all protracted purchases. Good brokers do help but you need to make the goal to come to the end of the contract to save yourself grief.

You do have contractual agreements with the seller but never finish a survey when you already know the boat won't work for. Pull the plug and save everyone the pain and suffering. All surveyors will cut you a deal if you don't need a written report and speak up soonest. It's a good idea to ask about a partial survey fee up front. Most will allow for some partial fee not including travel time and other expenses.

A good surveyor can help you decide some critical issues before you get all the way into it. If they steer you clear of a problem boat early they earned their money.
Paul Blais
s/v Bright Eyes Gozzard 36
37 15.7 N 76 28.9 W
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Old 22-02-2010, 20:19   #19
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Originally Posted by bstreep View Post
In negotiation, never, never, ever EVER fall in love with a deal. ALWAYS be prepared to walk away, at any given point. ALWAYS.
Absolutely! The minute you lose the ability to walk away, you've lost any & all negotiating leverage.
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