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Old 23-07-2020, 10:46   #16
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Re: Buying a used sailboat

This would be like finding a good (wife/husband) from browsing nude images on a dating portal.


At times the images are true to life, at other times they are of a younger sister. In some cases a 15 y.o. tall blonde turns out to be a 50 y.o bearded male.



To me, images are next to useless in judging a potential buy. Now come ask me about my photoshop skills.


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Old 23-07-2020, 12:55   #17
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Re: Buying a used sailboat

The most common pictures I see that would save someone from taking a trip to view a boat are the engine photos. Bits or over-sprayed paint on the belts, hose clamps, wiring, etc. are a common turn offs.
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Old 23-07-2020, 13:14   #18
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Re: Buying a used sailboat

As already noted, ad photos can be legit or not...one approach to indirectly verify potential legitimacy of photos is to see other comparable boats in person, crawl over, in and around, to develop an understanding of interiors/exteriors and areas of potential flaws. This combined with the listed price of these comparables should help in your remote evaluation of photos provided..If list price is extremely lo & limited photos, would ask many questions before traveling any distance, but if price is mid-hi and tons of photos, I would be more apt to "trust" the time-stamped photos & what they represent, but still need to see in person. good luck in your hunt.
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Old 23-07-2020, 15:42   #19
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Re: Buying a used sailboat

Instead of assessing the pictures...assess the seller. If you can email back and forth with questions, that's a good start. Telephone conversations often get sidetracked with personal stories, not relevant to the boat.

If the seller can give you lots of details and information via email or messaging, and answers questions directly, then that's a good sign.

I've bought several boats "sight unseen". The most convincing thing a seller said to me was..."I was sailing the boat yesterday, and it was great". That tells me the engine works, the rig is all there, etc.

If the owner is non-communicative, or is evasive, then walk away.
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Old 23-07-2020, 16:27   #20
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Re: Buying a used sailboat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
IMO... Does it come off on your hand leaving white residue?"
He said "no, it looks fine. "
When I flew down it there it was really flat white , porous, sun baked and powdery.
Grrr...
Are you kidding??? Broker lied to you??? Why, I never heard of
Such a thing!!! Holy cow. 🤪🤪🤪
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Old 23-07-2020, 17:30   #21
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Re: Buying a used sailboat

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Originally Posted by gulfcoastsailor View Post
Are you kidding??? Broker lied to you??? Why, I never heard of
Such a thing!!! Holy cow. ������
I don’t know why people don’t prominently list the names of brokers who are sleazy. Doing so would provide the greatest benefit this forum could provide and no liability accrues to anyone stating factual information regardless of how derogatory it may be. It would be analogous to writing a bad review on Yelp, Amazon, Opentable, etc... My only reservation is that the forum would be overwhelmed by naming unscrupulous brokers.
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Old 24-07-2020, 05:40   #22
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Re: Buying a used sailboat

Yes and No
Do you know what your looking at? Do you know what you want? In regard to the type of sailing you plan on doing, will you be club racing on Weds-night? Are you looking to chill and cruse? Will it be mostly day sailing? Where will you be sailing?
Deep water or shallow? What is the average wind range? How long is the season?
You should know what you want out of a vessel or at least understand what the differences are in structural features. Learn the basic hull, standing rigging,running rigging and cockpit configurations.
I am a performance minded cruiser that mostly day sails, I have a wife that is sensitive to motion. Our local sailing grounds are deep (For the most part) and protected to costal. We also like to just chill and I am an open water swimmer, so we looked for a vessel with ease of access to the water.
Knowing what you want will help you narrow your search, looking at photo representation with knowledge will help you identify the deal makers and breakers. Some neglect there vessels in use and maintenance others use heavily and clean compulsively, and most ly in between.
I got a deal on a vessel that was to much manual labor for the owner to sail solo and he was oblivious to maintenance or did not have the funds. If you can seen the cleaned structure under the neglect the photos will be invaluable.
My hierarchy is length, draft, Hull, motor, standing/running rigging, cockpit, electrical, interior. With deal beakers or makers at every step.

One Iíd the best ways to inform your self is though visual reference
IEictures
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Old 24-07-2020, 07:14   #23
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Re: Buying a used sailboat

Few responses here are addressing the specific question the original poster asked. Basically, is there a way to assess a listed boat for sale from afar to determine if it is even worth the time and effort to travel there and take a closer look at it?

Nowhere did he say anything about buying a boat sight-unseen or making offers on them as such.

Two principles are in effect here.

1: If it is too good to be true then it always is -or else in the rare instance of a super deal being available someone else would have definitely snapped it up by now. The exception is something that literally just went on the market that day. In those rare cases you have to be willing to jump with cash in hand to be the first person knocking on their door, and be prepared to be disappointed.

2: Someone else already mentioned this above, but you have to be able to assess the seller, not the boat since it can not be assessed by photos very well. You only really see what has been left out of the photos (reading between the lines) If it is broker listing -well you know what they say about used car salesmen. Boat brokers make used car salesmen look like choir boys.

If a private seller you can often tell what frequency they are transmitting on and what kind of signal you are picking up versus background noise. I don't know how much experience you have with the darker side of the marine industry and especially the used market, but when you say "wanna be sailor" I take it you may be at a bit of a disadvantage here, and more easily led astray by a bullship artist. Those tend to be in the majority nunfortunly. You are going to have to sift through a lot of crapola to find the hidden gems. Unfortunately that means a lot of wasted trips even for someone good at this game.

They say that good decision-making is a product of experience, while experience is a product of bad decision-making...
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Old 24-07-2020, 10:54   #24
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Re: Buying a used sailboat

Quote:
Originally Posted by flybynight View Post
Another question from a wanna-be sailor.
Is there a way of roughly assessing a used sailboat from its photo in the ad (in combination with the usual brief description)? Are there any clues that will tell you that this is something worthy of a trip, or - that this is clearly a piece of junk?

Thank you very much!
A lot of good advises here.
Been there and still there...
Treat any listing as "crime scene" with information provided by "crime" accomplice. Don't trust single word coming from broker or owner.
The only way to move forward remotely is "interrogate" main suspect - the boat owner. But you have to know what to ask, how to ask and have "interrogation" experience. THIS requires significant time and efforts.
I think you too early in the game to consider dedicated trip to see particular boat - forget about it for a couple of years. To speed up process travel locally or nearest location for educational trip to see as many boat as you can. Learn how investigate and compile reports for yourself. You will learn a lot..
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Old 24-07-2020, 11:06   #25
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Re: Buying a used sailboat

So itís Caveat Emptor when using both buyerís and sellerís brokers. Personally, Iím soon to be a buyer and will be asking to talk to folks from the brokerís client list as well as talking to others in the industry. It seems that due diligence is in order. If the broker refuses, thatís a broker I donít use.

1). Just how much money is appropriate to put into an escrow account?

2). Is there an ďAngieís ListĒ rating for boat brokers anywhere?

Thanks.
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Old 02-08-2020, 10:57   #26
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Re: Buying a used sailboat

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Originally Posted by WK4T View Post
So itís Caveat Emptor when using both buyerís and sellerís brokers. Personally, Iím soon to be a buyer and will be asking to talk to folks from the brokerís client list as well as talking to others in the industry. It seems that due diligence is in order. If the broker refuses, thatís a broker I donít use.

1). Just how much money is appropriate to put into an escrow account?

2). Is there an ďAngieís ListĒ rating for boat brokers anywhere?

Thanks.
Dave
1. everyone says 10%... I did 5% cause, whatever. If they didn't like it, they could have countered the offer. It was still more than enough money that I wouldn't want to lose it. My take is it just has to be enough that they know you're serious, and that if you flake it will cover the cost of not showing it while you line up a survey.
2. Not that I've found... but if they refuse to show up and then say "let's just meet tomorrow" as you stand at the boat for 2 hours... that's a good one to not use. (on the plus side, had a nice talk discussion going over things and a sandwich from the guy working on his boat next to that one. Super nice guy, and his info had me certain that it was a RUN AWAY from that boat anyway. )

HOPEFULLY by the end of this week our purchase will be done. In the process I've driven to see boats that the broker didn't show up for, that the owner called the broker cause "I don't want people on my boat, so i'm not gonna sell it". One boat that "Oh yea, the pics were before it was beached from the hurricane, but those rudders are sturdy, it doesn't hurt if it's a little bent" Several that "Oh, I just used the pictures from the previous owner's listing" one that had almost 2' of water in it, WHILE IT WAS ON THE HARD...
The list goes on.
That said I've also gone to boats gotten there double checked cause the boat in pictures looked trashed, the one I was standing at was very clean. (sadly those two were both just not a layout that would work for us)
Every aspect of this process for both buyers and sellers seems to be one step below the used car salesman level.
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Old 02-08-2020, 11:21   #27
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Re: Buying a used sailboat

Not really, but you can judge the apparent condition cosmetics wise

Another indicator, how well the lines appear to be stowed and how upscale the marina appears to be.

But really you need to have hands on the boat with a good survey to really know.
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Old 02-08-2020, 11:48   #28
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Re: Buying a used sailboat

Quote:
Originally Posted by hscrugby View Post
1. everyone says 10%... I did 5% cause, whatever. If they didn't like it, they could have countered the offer. It was still more than enough money that I wouldn't want to lose it. My take is it just has to be enough that they know you're serious, and that if you flake it will cover the cost of not showing it while you line up a survey.
.......

HOPEFULLY by the end of this week our purchase will be done. In the process I've driven to see boats that the broker didn't show up for, that the owner called the broker cause "I don't want people on my boat, so i'm not gonna sell it". One boat that "Oh yea, the pics were before it was beached from the hurricane, but those rudders are sturdy, it doesn't hurt if it's a little bent" Several that "Oh, I just used the pictures from the previous owner's listing" one that had almost 2' of water in it, WHILE IT WAS ON THE HARD...
The list goes on.
That said I've also gone to boats gotten there double checked cause the boat in pictures looked trashed, the one I was standing at was very clean. (sadly those two were both just not a layout that would work for us)
Every aspect of this process for both buyers and sellers seems to be one step below the used car salesman level.
Yep, it shouldn't take a big deposit. I've done like 1% or less on $250k-320k boats. I just ignore what brokers want. They can choose to move forward and sell a boat or not. Let's face it, selling boats is hard, a broker better to be willing to get it done however he needs to, or he's going broke. What else is doing? Sitting reading the newspaper. A good broker once took a faxed copy of a deposit check and got my sale.

And yeah, the default position is: "Assume both the Broker and Seller are either lying, or not knowledgeable until proven otherwise."
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Old 02-08-2020, 18:42   #29
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Re: Buying a used sailboat

I heartily concur with the advice to have the boat surveyed before negotiating the selling price, AND the surveyor should have no connection with broker or seller. Yes, the surveyor may not turn up some little things, but he/she will look at all aspects that are crucial to the boats sea worthiness and relative condition. Also, a recent survey may be required for insurance or renting a slip in a reputable marina. A thorough professional survey should run between $700-$1200 for a boat between 30-40 feet. Due diligence is nearly always worth the price in the end.
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