Painting with a very broad brush here but here's what I do.
If a "real deal" shows up on a boat I go to boats.com and do a search for that boat. Boats.com will usually have enough listings that you will get a few hits. From there you can see what like boats are selling for. At the top end may be somebody's pet or a non-serious seller. At the lower end may be some boats that barely float.
If the boat your son is interested in is in the bottom third on price
I think you can bet of having to invest some significant maintenance
A very cursory look reveals there are 18 Newport
30s listed in the US with a low price of $15,900 and a top price of $33,500. Based on this limited information I would be very wary of of a $14,500 dollar Newport. I probably would consider the middle amount - say $24k is representative of the brand. So he likely would have to put ~$10k to get this boat representative of the brand. He is at the older end of the age range and that is a fastor as well.
The hardest part in boat buying
is to take off the rose colored glasses and seeing it as an inanimate object. The great news about the west coast
is that for a 30 foot boat you have litereally hundreds to choose from. Over here we are lucky to have 5-6 in the whole country!
boats.com - Search Results
PS - If it were me, I'd be careful before spending money
for this boat. Maybe your son could just do a search on 30 foot boats in the San Diego and LA areas and just go kick tires for a while. It will give him a feel for the range of quality vs. price and save him a lot of surveyor money