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Old 13-04-2021, 13:45   #1
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Storing a sailboat in FL in order to sell

Hello All,

I have a 2003, european built, european flagged Beneteau Oceanis 361 sailboat. I sailed her across the atlantic in 2020 and am currently cruising in the caribbean, she is in good condition, fully equipped and ready to go.
I am planning to sell it. My initial plan was going to Rio dulce in Guatemala but i was told the location there is pretty remote plus lots of boats for sale, low prices, everybody told me the US is a better place to sell.

I asked a few marinas, but slip prices are pretty expensive for my standards.
So if it doesnt sell immediately that pretty quickly sums up to a lot of money.
I hope id find something not much more expensive than 350-400 usd/month.

I would be so thankful for any recommendations about Marinas in the FL, SC, NC area, also Brokers that could help selling the boat.
My insurance company covers named storms, so thats not an immediate concern, still the better sheltered the better.
I suppose it is easier to sell while in the water? Or how do you usually sell boats in the US?

Big Thank you,
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Old 14-04-2021, 16:19   #2
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Re: Storing a sailboat in FL in order to sell

You will have to import the boat into the US. How much will that set you back? There may be a guide on the US Customs web site that you can check.

We all know marina berths are expensive, as well. The cheaper marinas are the less well maintained ones; excellent protection will come at an espense. Maybe the boat would sell better back in Europe? Was its VAT paid there?

I'm thinking it might be more favorable for you to sell her back in Europe.

Ann
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Old 15-04-2021, 09:16   #3
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Re: Storing a sailboat in FL in order to sell

Hi Ann,

Thank you for your reply!
Well, european VAT is not paid, plus i am not really keen to sail her across back the atlantic.
We will see...
If anybody has a tip about affordable boatyards / marinas let me know,

Thank you
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Old 15-04-2021, 09:54   #4
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Re: Storing a sailboat in FL in order to sell

It has been a long time since I sailed Florida - my caveat but since no one has chimed in .....

Look inland, marinas are really expensive on the coasts. There used to be two in particular that were good hurricane holes and for long term out of the water storage. Indiantown Marina in Indiantown was my favorite, they had acres of boats from all over the world and Glades was similar but on the other side of Lake Okeechoobee. There use to be a lot of boats for sale there but most of them needed a lot of work. Hurricanes are possible so ask them to set you up with plywood under the stands. We used to take our mast and rigging down. It get really hot and humid so a white cover with lots of ventilation helps. One boat from South Africa "sank" while ashore - it rains a lot so if you have deck leaks, have a working pump.

In the water you will want to be near an airport. There was one marina in south Tampa that would have been perfect. Super protected, no services, very quiet and just a few minutes from the airport. Maybe someone with a dock will want to store and look after your boat?

I hope this starts off your discussion, my info is going back 25 years, I've heard Florida has really changed,.
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Old 15-04-2021, 11:46   #5
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Re: Storing a sailboat in FL in order to sell

Boats sell for the highest generally around Florida. Brokers most over will tell you that as well. But yes, the costs of dockage in florida is also high just from a demand point of view. But if your boat is in guatemala or somewhere that isnt that accessible, you will lose out on those sellers that it doesnt make sense to travel there, or have a surveyor go out there to survey a boat that it costs a good amount to just access. .

also, that being said - if your boat is located in US waters and it isnt flagged here, technically you cant sell it to a US buyer.
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Old 15-04-2021, 12:31   #6
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Re: Storing a sailboat in FL in order to sell

Quote:
Originally Posted by anthem00 View Post
Boats sell for the highest generally around Florida. Brokers most over will tell you that as well. But yes, the costs of dockage in florida is also high just from a demand point of view. But if your boat is in guatemala or somewhere that isnt that accessible, you will lose out on those sellers that it doesnt make sense to travel there, or have a surveyor go out there to survey a boat that it costs a good amount to just access. .

also, that being said - if your boat is located in US waters and it isnt flagged here, technically you cant sell it to a US buyer.
If the boat has not been imported into the USA, that is, has been custom's duty paid, it can not be offered for sale to a USA resident, hence one routinely sees advertisements for boat that are located in the USA stating: Not for Sale to Residents of the USA.

If a USA resident expresses interest in the boat, e.g., makes an offer then the boat will need to be imported into the USA to be sold or to proceed towards marketing it to that person.

If someone who is not a resident of the USA expresses interest in purchasing the boat then it will need to either be imported into the USA to be sold in the USA, or it will need to be transported out of the USA to a foreign place or port to be sold, albeit typically invokes its own need to be imported into that foreign place or port to be availed the right to sale the sailboat.

A broker will explain the details and the work around and will be sure to include the proper disclaimer language on any and all marketing information, be that websites, signage, print media, etc.

Duty on a France made Bennie should only be 1.5%. There is no VAT in the USA but there can be a State Sales or Use taxation upon sale.

Not sure about the need for compliance as the engine as to emission regulations will be for that older boat, which may preclude its admission as to importation until it is brought into compliance as to emissions. If that is an issue that can invoke a very expensive new engine installation / upgrade.

Presently I know of no retaliatory tariff for EU built vessels imposed by the US Customs upon importation entry to the USA;
whereas be aware that the EU has imposed a 25% tariff on vessels imported from the USA to the EU and that retaliatory tariff is scheduled to increase to be 50% of the CIF value of the USA origin boat when imported into the USA. And that retaliatory tariff is in addition to the regular tariff duty; also note that EU VAT will be imposed on the full value of CIF plus the all of the EU duty so one will be looking at say 70+% cost of importing a USA origin boat into the EU later this year. No joy in that harsh duty and VAT expense.
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Old 15-04-2021, 13:09   #7
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Re: Storing a sailboat in FL in order to sell

For a moderate priced sail boat less than 40', I think paying the 1.5% import duty and selling in the US is the right move. As you are not a US citizen you will have to state register it (very inexpensive) rather than document with the CG - but that's not a problem for buyers. The buyer will face a 6% state sales tax but they face that on any boat purchase.

For cheapest rates, I'd look at Indian River marina. While far inland, it's close enough for buyers to visit and there are lots of boats for sale so buyers typically can see several boats on their trip. No hurricane risk. Very inexpensive. Consider hauling for even cheaper rates.

The market is very good right now because of COVID. I might think of first getting a slip for a month at a major marina on the coast - price aggressively and try to sell it in a few weeks. If that fails - move it inland to longer storage.

If you don't want to be that far from the ocean, look at St. Augustine. Cheaper than farther south in Florida. Good brokerage activity and lots of sailboats.

Indiantown Marina - Home
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