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Old 05-08-2018, 20:37   #1
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Do you have to have your boat surveyed?

I've never bought a boat before and was wondering? I'm in U.S
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Old 05-08-2018, 20:41   #2
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Re: Do you have to have your boat surveyed?

Are you paying cash? If so, you can do whatever you want.

If youíre financing your boat, your lender will probably require it.

A lot of people here will tell you youíre crazy to buy a boat without a proper survey. If itís a major purchase, youíre probably better off doing so. If itís a cheap fixer-upper, it may be worth doing it yourself.
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Old 05-08-2018, 20:47   #3
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Re: Do you have to have your boat surveyed?

Thanks, I was looking in to buying a cheaper boat and just don't know all the rules.
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Old 05-08-2018, 20:58   #4
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Re: Do you have to have your boat surveyed?

Someone linked this in another thread, probably relevant to you.

http://www.pcmarinesurveys.com/Marin...rvey%20101.htm
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Old 05-08-2018, 21:26   #5
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Re: Do you have to have your boat surveyed?

Yeah this could be some help.
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Old 06-08-2018, 00:49   #6
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Re: Do you have to have your boat surveyed?

Sometimes it depends on the age of the boat.

For me it was the insurance comapany that required a survey.
I have one 2005 bavaria 42, that did not require a survey
Also just bought a 1982 Naticat 52.
I use the same insurance company on both ( Pantaenius) But on the Nauticat they required a boat survey and a rig survey.
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Old 06-08-2018, 05:47   #7
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Re: Do you have to have your boat surveyed?

Whether required or not, I recognize my lack of experience makes paying for at least informal assistance critical to me choosing a boat that won't cost the world to fix up.

The cheaper the price the more important that aspect is.

Spending $1000 on a surveyor to help me choos the right $3000 boat makes perfect sense to me.
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Old 06-08-2018, 06:00   #8
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Re: Do you have to have your boat surveyed?

As mentioned, if you want to finance your purchase then it is a good possibility that your lender will require a survey. If you want to insure the boat, it is also a good possibility that the insurer will require a survey. These requirements vary from lender to lender, and insurer to insurer.


Other than that, there are no "rules." The idea of a survey is to have an experienced professional take a look at the boat in case there might be major issues with it that you could not identify. It is like having an inspection done when you buy a house.


Of course, there is a point where having a survey doesn't make sense. A couple of years ago I bought myself a little, 15' daysailer for $850. No head, no galley, no engine, no electrical system. Nothing except a hull, a mast, a boom, a rudder, and a centerboard. It would have made no sense at all to hire a surveyor for a purchase like that.


So, in the end, barring any requirements of a lender or insurer, it is really up to you to decide if you are capable of judging the condition of the boat, and its various systems, well enough to do without a survey or not.


Good luck.
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Old 06-08-2018, 06:48   #9
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Re: Do you have to have your boat surveyed?

There is no legal requirement to do so but getting financing or insurance will often create the need.

Many marinas and mooring fields require insurance.
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Old 06-08-2018, 07:09   #10
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Re: Do you have to have your boat surveyed?

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There is no legal requirement to do so but getting financing or insurance will often create the need.

Many marinas and mooring fields require insurance.
Have you seen this much? I can understand if your doing a long stay at the marina but week long stuff would seem crazy. I guess insurance can't be much for a shitty boat.
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Old 06-08-2018, 07:55   #11
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Re: Do you have to have your boat surveyed?

When I bought mine, there was no legal or lender requirement for a survey. I had one done anyway because everyone told me that as a novice I had to do it. The broker was especially insistent, probably out of concerns of potential liability of his own.

It was a mistake. I got nothing out of that survey that was worth its steep price. Essentially, I paid for a formality I didn't need. Fortunately I also paid less than market for the boat, leaving me with plenty of financial room to fix the inevitable surprises of an older boat without exceeding its value.

I'm learning as I go, which is what everyone does in sailing. Next time I buy a boat I'll be competent to do my own &^%$ survey, and hang those pushing the service.

One of the first things I learned once into boating is that there are a lot of old sailors trying to increase their retirement income by selling services to novices. While some in the business are solid, honest people, and worth every dime of their time, many see newbies as little more than sources of quick cash. If you use them, stick with the ones who have sterling reputations, and make hard, critical decisions about what you really need. Let no one persuade you to do anything you yourself have not thought through and learned enough about to make sound decisions. Caveat emptor.
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Old 06-08-2018, 08:03   #12
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Re: Do you have to have your boat surveyed?

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Originally Posted by joseph221980 View Post
Have you seen this much? I can understand if your doing a long stay at the marina but week long stuff would seem crazy. I guess insurance can't be much for a shitty boat.
If you're in US waters, then, given the state of our insane tort and regulatory systems, liability insurance is something you don't want to go without. Casualty insurance, on the other hand, has become a ripoff as an industry, and not just for boats. If you're not required to carry it by a lender, then you can make up your own mind whether to buy it or self-insure.

I've not encountered any marina in this region (Carolina coast) that insists you insure your boat as opposed to your potential obligations to others. I'm sure there are some in other places, perhaps one or two here I've missed. I'm equally sure I wouldn't want to do business with them.
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Old 06-08-2018, 08:13   #13
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Re: Do you have to have your boat surveyed?

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If you're in US waters, then, given the state of our insane tort and regulatory systems, liability insurance is something you don't want to go without. Casualty insurance, on the other hand, has become a ripoff as an industry, and not just for boats. If you're not required to carry it by a lender, then you can make up your own mind whether to buy it or self-insure.

I've not encountered any marina in this region (Carolina coast) that insists you insure your boat as opposed to your potential obligations to others. I'm sure there are some in other places, perhaps one or two here I've missed. I'm equally sure I wouldn't want to do business with them.
Yeah I can see some very large fancy place with $500k boats one right next to the other and can't afford to park there anyways
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Old 06-08-2018, 08:22   #14
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Re: Do you have to have your boat surveyed?

No you dont have to. If you are mechanical and the boat is cheap you can rely on yourself. Many auto insurers will insure smaller boats without survey.
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Old 06-08-2018, 08:42   #15
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Re: Do you have to have your boat surveyed?

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Originally Posted by joseph221980 View Post
Have you seen this much? I can understand if your doing a long stay at the marina but week long stuff would seem crazy. I guess insurance can't be much for a shitty boat.
Good luck getting insurance on a cheap boat. Pantaneus told us our $25,000 most didn't qualify for insurance.
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