Buying a Second-Hand Vessel
Advice on Buying a Second Hand Vessel
Why should I buy from a broker?
Firstly, most Brokers including ours are boating enthusiasts. They understand the ins-and-outs of boats and the boat sales process, and will endeavour to make it as simple as possible for you.
A Broker will be able to guide you through the entire buying process and offer a wide choice of boats for you to view. They will also be able to help and advise you on the suitability of different types, sizes and style of boat with an unbiased view. A good Broker will also be able to provide a contract agreeing the terms of your purchase as well as assist with making your survey arrangements, organising sea or river trials, helping with technical issues, moorings, insurance and finance.
Brokers can also help protect Purchasers against any outstanding claims, liens or finance that may apply to the chosen vessel. Ultimately, they can help ensure a smooth transition of ownership with clear title, including the Bill of Sale and all the other relevant documentation, passing title from the Seller to the Buyer.
Why do I need to pay a deposit before I have even driven the boat?
A deposit is requested once a price has been agreed for your purchase. However this deposit is held in a clients trust account and is usually subject to satisfactory survey and/or demonstration and evidence of a title chain. The deposit is required to remove the vessel from the market and hold it under offer on your behalf whilst these procedures are carried out. The deposit is refundable should any of the caveats relating to your purchase not be completed as agreed and detailed in the sales contract.
Can finance be arranged for the purchase?
There are several major marine finance companies that will be happy to provide finance for your purchase. Each company may well have different financial products and can advise you which would be most suitable for your circumstances. See our link to our finance partner CGI and get an indicative quote on line immediately.
What are the annual running costs involved?
General running costs will depend on the size of the vessel and where you plan to keep or use it. Things to take into consideration are mooring costs, insurance, registration and licensing costs, together with typical costs for annual maintenance, fuel and other incidentals. We would be delighted to give you an approximation of the typical costs expected for any boat you have in mind.
Do I need to have a survey carried out?
Surveys can be required for all sorts of purposes - pre-purchase, condition, insurance, damage and re-fit are the main examples. In the case of buying a vessel Surveyors provide you with a written report explaining any defects and how urgent the repair is, and suggesting means of rectification. This information can be extremely helpful when buying a vessel as you may be able to reduce the purchase price or have the defects rectified before completion. If the defects are very serious, you may even wish to reconsider buying the boat, something our sales agreements enables. Surveyors understand the construction materials and equipment aboard and so are able to provide you with a very professional service. Therefore Boat Showrooms strongly advises that you instruct a qualified and reputable Marine Surveyor to carry out a report on your prospective purchase. This will give you peace of mind that the vessel is in good condition with all equipment working, or will draw attention to any defects.
A good surveyor will provide you with an extensive report on the boat and its condition, including ancillary equipment. If your intended vessel is around 20 years old or more, many insurance companies will insist you have a survey before they will offer cover on the vessel. A survey will also usually be required by a marine lender to make sure your vessel is a sound investment. Although Boat Showrooms is unable to recommend any specific Surveyor to you, we can offer you a list of Surveyors who are all YBDSA accredited. This means they are very experienced, undertake continuous training throughout their membership, abide by the Surveyors' Code of Practice and have the appropriate professional indemnities in place.
Is a licence necessary to drive a boat?
A licence is not currently required to handle a boat in UK waters.
However, insurers will usually assess the type of boat you are buying against your experience or lack of it and may ask you to take an industry recognised course such as the RYA Day Skipper if you plan to go to sea. No licence is required for use on inland waterways, but you may find that courses such as the RYA Inland Helmsman Certificate are an excellent way of gaining confidence and learning and improving your boating skills, particularly for the less experienced skipper. Once a qualification and training has been undertaken most people actually get more from their boating as it usually gives not only them the confidence in their own ability but also it gives confidence to friends and family who come aboard. Boat Showrooms would be happy to put you in touch with any appropriate RYA recommended training establishments and instructors to suit your location and boat type.