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When buying a used boat, inspection if "in the water", and test sea trials if out?

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When buying a used boat, inspection if "in the water", and test sea trials if out?

Old 06-04-2018, 07:34 AM
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Default When buying a used boat, inspection if "in the water", and test sea trials if out?

My buying of boats in the past was more around run-abouts, outboards.

When looking at inboard boats, in the upper 20 foot to low 30 foot range, we're planning on using a surveyor to inspect it.
Many boats we're looking at are still up on land...so the survey will be easy. Is asking to take her out for a sea trial still common in this situation? With the price of dunking...I don't see this being common!

Another boat we had in our list with the broker to look at last weekend, to the brokers surprise...the owner put it in the water! How does a seller expect to sell a boat when a potential buyer can't have his surveyor guy take a look at the hull 'n drive system from the bottom sides? It was a '98 Sea Ray 300.
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Old 06-04-2018, 07:39 AM
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contract and deposit first with stipulations of survey and sea trial after. That is how we did ours and pretty sure most are that way. The boat was in the water so surveyor came for sea trial and then the boat was pulled and surveyed. Price adjustments were made to contract after survey for recommended repairs.
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Old 06-04-2018, 07:54 AM
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Originally Posted by jdiddy101 View Post
contract and deposit first with stipulations of survey and sea trial after. ...
Gotcha.

I'm guessing some marinas may have a fixed fee for hauling for inspection, say "hang time" is an hour or something...perhaps something like 300 or 500 bucks flat fee..for an approx 30 footer? Tying to figure out what kind of "value" you'd place on something when it comes negotiation price for the final sale price.
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Old 06-04-2018, 08:01 AM
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Whether the boat is in the water or on land, it needs to be hauled and launched (or launched and hauled) for a proper survey/sea trial. Buyer pays.
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Old 06-04-2018, 08:18 AM
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Originally Posted by finatic1 View Post
Whether the boat is in the water or on land, it needs to be hauled and launched (or launched and hauled) for a proper survey/sea trial. Buyer pays.
OK...thanks.
From my perspective..I guess that aggravates me a bit, one of the boats on our "like list"..that was on land, the owner decided to dunk it and it's in a slip. So it makes the potential buyer ask "Why did the owner drop it in the water..if they're selling it? Knowing it adds costs to the price of the sale?"
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Old 06-04-2018, 08:27 AM
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Originally Posted by YeOldeStonecat View Post
OK...thanks.
From my perspective..I guess that aggravates me a bit, one of the boats on our "like list"..that was on land, the owner decided to dunk it and it's in a slip. So it makes the potential buyer ask "Why did the owner drop it in the water..if they're selling it? Knowing it adds costs to the price of the sale?"
Perhaps they just wanted to use it for the summer while its up for sale. Would not overthink that.
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Old 06-04-2018, 08:36 AM
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Buyer pays for a short haul.
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Old 06-04-2018, 08:38 AM
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Originally Posted by YeOldeStonecat View Post
OK...thanks.
From my perspective..I guess that aggravates me a bit, one of the boats on our "like list"..that was on land, the owner decided to dunk it and it's in a slip. So it makes the potential buyer ask "Why did the owner drop it in the water..if they're selling it? Knowing it adds costs to the price of the sale?"
If it was on land buyer would typically pick up the tab to, "dunk it," (and return to land) for sea trial, during which engine survey can also be completed. Surveyor for boat & other for engines. Having
it already in the water is a savings for buyer.
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Old 06-04-2018, 09:30 AM
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If the boat is in the water, you or your surveyor will arrange for a short-haul on your dime. If out of the water, you will arrange to have it floated and then re-hauled for the sea trial, again, on your own dime. Personally, I would be nervous about spending this dime on a boat that isn't floating. I wouldn't make an offer on a boat and incur the aforementioned dime without at least seeing the boat in its natural habitat.
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Old 06-04-2018, 10:21 AM
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I bought used through a dealer and they refunded, actually never charged me, the splash fee for sea trial when I bought it, I would have had to pay if I didn't purchase. If I was to buy from an owner I would ask they refund the cost to splash if I purchase.
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Old 06-04-2018, 10:31 AM
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When I was negotiating a purchase, the boat was on the hard for the survey, followed by a dunk to do the sea trial with the surveyor, me, and the sales guy on board. It was a consignment boat but I don't think that mattered. I fully expected to pay for the survey and sea trial. I think the sales guy/dealership didn't charge for the launch but may have charged the seller since it had to be hauled to repair a raw water pump.
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Old 06-04-2018, 10:41 AM
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A few years back, '29 Blackfin Combi. Went to look at the boat a couple hours away, liked the boat. Buyer and I agreed to a price, assuming a clean survey. We agreed on a marina he was willing to take it to. I told the marina operator we need it taken out of the water at 10AM. Surveyor was instructed to come at 9AM. Boat owner instructed to come at 9AM. I paid for the haul out. It was in the air for about an hour. Bill = $120. Then we dropped the boat back in the water, surveyor, owner, and I got on and ran it through various RPM's. Back at the marina, surveyor ran final tests and made his notes. It took about 4 hours total. Worth every penny.
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Old 06-04-2018, 12:30 PM
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Make the offer subject to Inspection, Sea Trial & Survey. If the owner agrees and the boat is on land, it is up to the owner to make the boat ready for sea trial (put the boat in the water). If the boat is already in the water then part of your Survey is to inspect bottom and running gear, thus the short haul, which is on the buyer. Don't know where you are but a decent price is @ $5 p/ft, with $10 being on the high side for a short haul. If its out on land and your surveyor can inspect the bottom and save you the shorthaul, great. I'd rather have the boat in the water knowing all systems are running instead of coming out of sleep and launch/sea trial all in the same day.
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